Dispatches | June 17, 2014

The month of June is First Books Month at The Missouri Review Soundbooth. This month, we’ll bring you readings and interviews with four writers who have recently published their first full-length books. We kick off the series with fiction writer Michael Piafksy, whose novel All the Happiness You Deserve was published in February by Prospect Park Books.

All the Happiness You Deserve follows its midwestern protagonist from childhood to old age as he examines the touchpoints and transitions that define a life. The protagonist’s languorous journey takes him through the pivotal experiences common to so many American men: a middle-class childhood, college, marriage, fatherhood, cross-country moves, business success and failure, and aging. Author Michael Piafsky frames his story with Tarot images that provide a subtly cutting commentary on the disconnectedness of society and the perplexing isolation of the human condition.

Michael Piafsky is the Director of Creative Writing at Spring Hill College in Alabama. The Missouri native earned an MA in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins University and a PhD from the University of Missouri. A former editor of the Missouri Review, Piafsky has published fiction and nonfiction in such journals as Meridian, Epic, and Bar Stories. A chapter from All the Happiness You Deserve was published by the Jabberwock Review and nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

The Missouri Review Soundbooth is a weekly podcast series that brings you readings  and interviews with authors, editors and agents about what’s happening in the literary world. Subscribe to our free podcast on iTunes.