He is the father of three daughters and five sons, the grandfather of four girls and five boys.
His interests range from the scriptures, Plato, Aristotle, and St. Augustine to Emmanuel Levinas and Raymond Carver, but most recently he has pursued studies of Reynolds Price and Gina Berriault, and he continues to write his own fiction. He has published poems, stories, critical essays, and reviews in Carolina Quarterly, The Ensign, Modern Fiction Studies, BYU Studies, Sunstone, Dialogue, Western American Literature, Wasatch Review, and High Plains Literary Review.
The main study of his life since childhood has been the hearing and telling of stories. His work focuses at the intersection of story, the ethics of agency, and the sacred. As an LDS literary critic, he would do the works of Abraham, who waited in the door of his tent to welcome strangers, and pled with Yahweh to spare the Cities of the Plain for the sake of even ten righteous persons. He now feels that all his writing is a long, intermittent, tentative exploration of the LDS scriptural teaching that "the spirit and the body are the soul of man."
M.A. in English (1969), Brigham Young University
Ph.D. in American Literature (1978), Cornell University
He teaches creative writing at Brigham Young University and writes criticism. He writes poetry as well as fiction under the name Wayne Jorgensen. He has most recently been pursuing studies of the American fiction writers Reynolds Price, George P Elliott, and Gina Berriault. Jorgensen, who has served as President of the Association for Mormon Letters, has written criticism that has been seminal in shaping Mormon literary tradition.