Gary Short is from Virginia City, Nevada. He completed his undergraduate work at Fresno State University where Pulitzer Prize winner Philip Levine ran the creative writing program. Later, he earned a master's degree in English at Sacramento State, where he studied with the poet Dennis Schmitz. Short received a master of fine arts (MFA) in creative writing at Arizona State University, under the tutelage of noted poet Norman Dubie. He is the author of three poetry collections: Theory of Twilight, (Ahsahta Press, 1994); Flying Over Sonny Liston (University of Nevada Press, 1996), which won the Western States Book Award; and 10 Moons and 13 Horses (University of Nevada Press, 1996).