Book-length Nonfiction


Art / Photography / Video Art


  • (Script) Trauma Bounding
  • Editorial consultation for forthcoming Science Fiction Movie


2010/2009 (Juvenilia) 


  • Ironclad Closet Long Island City Magazine
  • The Madness of the Upperclass THE L MAGAZINE 
  • Presidential Elections IMPACTGAMES
  • Battleground States
  • Acorn and the FBI
  • Oil Balancing Act
  • Car Giants Mega Merger
  • Livini’s Coalition
  • Sanctuary for Deserters
  • Dying of the Light
  • Madonna Divorce Rumors
  • Angels and Monsters
  • Nobel prize in Literature
  • Middle aged Nukes
  • Russia Recognizes Independence
  • O.J. Simpson on trial again
  • North Korean succession
  • U.S. Financial Crisis
  • Vice Presidential Debates
  • IOC Age Investigation
  • Too Maverick for the Mavs? (etc)


  • Cyberpunk Not Dead The L Magazine
  • Homeland
  • Sour Grapes, Grad School, and Granta
  • Off-campus Housing Court
  • Love hurts, squashes roaches
  • From the Department of Rhetoric
  • Soft focus


  • Prestige: the answer to our woes
  • On ceasing to self-infantilize
  • On protestors and other bloodsuckers
  • Who, who, who will feed the owls?
  • Coming in from the cold

More Intelligent Life clippings available here
ImpactGames clippings available here
The L Magazine clippings available here
Columbia Daily Spectator clippings available here
3quarksdaily clippings available here (scroll down)


  1. Jamie says:

    Most of these links should be working now… I’ll try to find my ancient Foreign Policy and TIME Asia clippings too

  2. Jamie says:

    Teaching experience includes:

    Fall Semester 2010, Teaching Assistant, FICTION: A PRIMER
    with Heidi Julavits

  3. John Washington says:

    Dear James McGirk,
    I like your work, especially the recent Kim Jong-un piece. I’m a Fulbright Fellow in Mexico City, working on an anthology of fiction that has to do with migration. I’d like to send you an invitation to participate. If you’re interested, drop me a line and I’ll send you more information.
    Thanks, and hope to hear from you,
    John Washington

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Why We Trash Hotel Rooms

A situationist analysis of trashing hotel rooms. An attempt at writing prose poetry.

“The New Flesh” essay in Angel City Review

PDF link to the magazine.

Awarded Art 365 Grant

Amy and I were selected as 2017 Art 365 artists by the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition.

Art 365 is an exhibition from the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition which offers five Oklahoma artists a year and $12,000 to create innovative artwork in collaboration with a nationally recognized curator. The artists work with a guest curator for one year to create a body of original artwork for the exhibition.

The Horror of the Ouachita Mountains

The closest Paul Bowman ever came to killing Bigfoot was in 2011: “I was kicking around camp around two, three in the afternoon when there was a rock impact from the west, a large one—he couldn’t have been far—so I get suited up and grab my camo and rifle and go out. Bob Strain stood guard.

Coast to Coast Cat Smuggling

The rendezvous was arranged for a motel parking lot just off the I-44 freeway in Oklahoma. (“Please beware of this one,” warned a Google review of the motel. “Your life is not safe here.”) A helicopter cruised overhead. Outside, the temperature was over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. A man and a woman in a black Jeep Grand Cherokee rolled under an awning.

South China Morning Post Reviews “A Grand Theory…”

Grand Theory of Everything
by James McGirk
Amazon Digital Services (e-book)

Perhaps “strange chemicals”, and large quantities of alcohol, have affected the way James McGirk thinks. For A Grand Theory of Everything is odd – deep but also shallow, and meaningless, unless you too have careened through life trying to make sense of stuff. That will include many, although few will have had his upbringing, living as a “princeling”. As an Anglo-American teenager growing up in New Delhi with journalist parents, his was a third-culture existence, heightened by hard drugs, which he took to expand his mind and become a psychedelic astronaut. Then, everything was like an onion, wrapped around a core of nothingness. His theory of everything shifts when he encounters Colonel John Boyd, developer of the OODA loop, which stands for Observe, Orient, Decide and Act. The premise is that by acting faster than an opponent you will appear unpredictable to them and have the upper hand. Readers will wonder whether this Kindle Single was the result of a bad trip.

The Horror in the Ouachita Mountains

Giving a talk to the Oklahoma Skeptics Society about my search for the Ouachita Mountain bigfoot and the group of amateur researchers who want to kill him. November 9th at Picasso’s Cafe in Oklahoma City: 7pm-9pm. (More details forthcoming)

The Stranger

A new piece in Oklahoma Humanities Magazine’s Internationalism themed issue about assembling a version of the United States from abroad.

A Grand Theory of Everything

What do you do if you’re a teenager, stranded by your parents in New Delhi, without any sort of adult supervision, with easy access to all sorts of strange drugs? If you’re James McGirk, you use your bad trip to develop a philosophy that explains the whole world and all of its complexities. In A Grand Theory of Everything, McGirk takes us from the winding backstreets of New Delhi to his cramped apartment in New York City, and then on to his eventual relocation with his wife to the empty plains of Oklahoma. And, most importantly, he takes us inside his own head, where his weird theories take shape to help him understand his alienation from his family, his struggles to find a career, his wife’s failing health, and all of life’s hardships. 




Amazon Author Page

Here’s a link to my new Amazon author page