Paul Kareem Tayyar was born in Los Angeles in 1977. The son of an Iranian father and an Irish Catholic mother, he was raised in Orange County, California, where he spent his childhood watching Warren Beatty and Robert Redford movies on television, listening to "Born to Run" and "Purple Rain" approximately 17 million times, and playing so much pickup basketball that he still can’t believe the L.A. Lakers didn’t sign him by the time he was twelve years old.
After graduating from U.C. Santa Barbara with a Bachelor’s Degree in English, from Cal. St. University Long Beach with a Master’s in English, and U.C. Riverside with a Ph.D. in English, he became a faculty member at Golden West College in Huntington Beach, California. He teaches a variety of courses at the school, including Appreciation of Literature, American Literature, British Literature, World Literature, Great Myths and Legends, and Children’s Literature. In 2013 he was named Teacher of the Year at the campus, as well as Teacher of the Year for the Coast Community College District.
His poetry collections include "Scenes From A Good Life" (Tebot Bach), "Postmark Atlantis" (Level 4 Press), "Follow the Sun" (Aortic Books), and "Magic Carpet Poems" (Tebot Bach), as well as a novella, "In the Footsteps of the Silver King" (Spout Hill Press). His work has been featured on The Writer’s Almanac With Garrison Keillor and anthologized in a variety of collections, including the "L.A. Fiction Anthology: Southland Stories by Southland Writers" (Red Hen Press) and "The Giant Book of Poetry" (Level 4 Press). Of his work, Edward Field has written, “Reading Kareem Tayyar [is to be] in the presence of an electric, first-rate mind”, and the Los Angeles Times has said Tayyar’s voice is “illustrative, almost lyrical […] which transports the reader directly onto the scene of each page.”
When not teaching literature, Tayyar can usually be found swimming in the Pacific Ocean, watching superhero movies at the local movie theater, or sitting on his sofa and watching NBA Games on ESPN.