MEET DOUG WORGUL: Our Alpha Author in Residence

Doug Worgul

The Honors College is excited to welcome Doug Worgul, the college’s first-ever Author in Residence. Worgul is a distinguished author, journalist and advertising executive, with four published books of his own. This semester, Worgul is teaching a class called, “The Author at Alpha”, which is a uniquely-designed course to teach students how to write a novel. Students in the course will read and discuss the first chapter of several famous novels while crafting the first chapter of their own novel.

While Worgul has taught many courses at other universities and high schools, this is his first time teaching at MU. Students are encouraged to say hello to Worgul as he spends his semester in Columbia, but in the meantime, here are some fun facts to help you get to know our Author in Residence.


Name: Doug Worgul

Hometown: Lansing, Michigan.

Alma Mater: Western Michigan University

Favorite book: Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving.

Favorite author: Jim Harrison, Kent Haruf and Marilynne Robinson

Favorite place to eat in CoMo: It’s cliché, I know, but Shakespeare’s is my favorite pizza joint of all time, not just in CoMo.

Favorite quote or philosophy: ‘It’s not in the unquestioned answers but rather in the unanswered questions where most of life’s meaning can be found.”

Advice for aspiring authors?  Don’t aspire to be an author, aspire to write and to write well. Publication may or may not happen, but either way, you’ve become a writer.

Greatest professional accomplishment? Having written a novel. Note that I did not say that the greatest accomplishment was the publication of the novel. It was the actual writing and completion of the novel that has had the most significant impact on my life and how I understand myself.