Mike Shropshire is a writer/journalist, beginning his career in the 1960s at the Fort Worth Press. For almost a decade, he wrote both a sports column and a television column. During the latter, he interviewed every person of consequence in network television. In 1971, Shropshire was featured on the back cover of Editor and Publisher magazine (the most influential trade publication in journalism) as "the best writer in Texas."
For the next five years, Shropshire wrote for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, mostly traveling with and reporting the activities and occasional exploits of the Texas Rangers baseball team. Shropshire then worked as a senior writer at the Dallas Morning News and as associate editor at D Magazine, writing long, in-depth articles on topics involving media, law, true crime, business, politics and various elements of the entertainment industry.
In the mid-Nineties, Shropshire switched his focus to writing books. Seasons in Hell, a memoir of his experiences with the Texas Rangers baseball team in the 1970's, was published by Donald I. Fine Books (New York) in 1996. Immediately, Shropshire made a half-hour appearance on the Don Imus program, in which the host described the work as "the single funniest sports book I have ever read."
The editor-publisher, Don Fine (who published the first novels of authors such as James Jones, Kurt Vonnegut, Rona Jaffe and Ken Follet) commissioned Shropshire to write a novel. The result was The Pro, which was published in 2001. The novel was greeted with coast-to-coast critical applause, including Publishers Weekly, which termed the work "brilliantly conceived comedy."
Subsequently, Shropshire has published two more non-fiction sports books, When the Tuna Went to Down to Texas (2004) and Runnin' With the Big Dogs (2006), both published by Harper-Collins (William Morrow, New York). The former gained a rave review in the New York Times Sunday book section ("Shropshire's prose snaps, crackles and pops"), the latter was the featured review in the weekend edition of the Wall Street Journal ("...Mr. Shropshire, Texas' greatest journalistic raconteur, has created a relentlessly entertaining narrative").
Shropshire also writes prolifically for Sports Illustrated, Playboy and Slate.com. In 1999, he was the first American journalist to visit Libya in twenty years, composing a feature article on the Libyan Olympic team for Sports Illustrated on Muhammad al-Gaddafi, the son of Moammar Ghadafi, and in 2002, the same magazine sent him to Monaco to compose an in-depth portrait on Prince Albert.
He published his sixth book, The Last Real Season (Grand Central Publishing), in May, 2008. The Christian Science Monitor listed it as a "book of the week" selection, noting, "If you liked the motion picture Bull Durham, you will love this book...Shropshire recalls his days of alcohol, drugs and loose women with blunt whimsy." Throughout June and July, The Last Real Season was ranked by Amazon.com as the number-two top selling sports book in the United States among over 200,000 titles.
Shropshire and Karen Greer, a Dallas lawyer, have been married 27 years. Their son Patrick, graduated from the University of North Texas, recently completed his first screenplay which is entitled Chainsaw Factory II.