Born James Beresford Grant in Melbourne in 1949, Jamie Grant attended Geelong Grammar School, and subsequently La Trobe University, where he studied English. After graduating he worked briefly in advertising as a copywriter, before becoming a sales representative for the academic publisher Cambridge University Press. Grant moved to Sydney in 1984, where he worked as a bookseller and later as a freelance journalist and reviewer. He is married to a literary agent, Margaret Connolly.
Grant began publishing poetry in Australian literary journals in the early 1970s. His first poetry collection was a joint publication with Graeme Kinross-Smith, Turn Left at Any Time With Care (1975). He has since published six further volumes of poetry, including a Selected Poems (2001). Associated with the more conservative stream of contemporary Australian poets such as Les Murray and Robert Gray, in the late 1980s and early 1990s Grant gained a reputation for his book reviews, which tended to be highly critical of the ‘Generation of ’68’ poets among others. His poems have been distinguished by their use of narrative, and increasingly, by the use of rhymed verse. His work has appeared in a number of literary magazines, most frequently in Quadrant. Grant was editor of the anthology 100 Australian Poems You Need to Know (2008).Poetry Collections
- [with Graeme Kinross-Smith], Turn Left at Any Time With Care (St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 1975).
- The Refinery (North Ryde, NSW: Angus and Robertson, 1985).
- Skywriting Poems 1985–1988 (North Ryde, NSW: Angus and Robertson, 1989).
- Mysteries: Poems 1989–1991 (Port Melbourne, Vic: Heinemann, 1993).
- The Valley Murders: Poems 1992–1995 (Port Melbourne, Vic: Heinemann, 1995).
- Relativity: Poems 1995–1998 (Potts Point, NSW: Duffy and Snellgrove, 1998).
- Selected Poems (Potts Point, NSW: Duffy and Snellgrove, 2001).
- Gary Catalano, ‘Jamie Grant,’ Quadrant 40.12 (1996), pp. 59–65.
- Jamie Grant, ‘The Generation of ’68 – and Me,’ Southerly 59.3-4 (1999), pp. 213–16.
- Geoff Page, A Reader’s Guide to Contemporary Australian Poetry (St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 1995), pp. 86–88.
- Alan Wearne, ‘The Chart: A Reply to Jamie Grant,’ Southerly 60.1 (2000): pp. 150–55.