Michael Kardos,
Associate Professor &
Co-Director of Creative Writing

2308 Lee Hall
Department of English
P.O. Box E
Mississippi State, MS   39762


Michael Kardos

Professional Bio

Michael Kardos co-directs the creative writing program at Mississippi State. He is the author of the novels Before He Finds Her (Grove Atlantic/Mysterious Press, 2015) and The Three-Day Affair (Grove Atlantic/Mysterious Press, 2012), an Esquire best book of the year, as well as the story collection One Last Good Time (Press 53, 2011), which won the Mississippi Institute of Arts & Letters Award for fiction, and the textbook The Art and Craft of Fiction: A Writer’s Guide (Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2013). His short stories have appeared in The Southern Review, CrazyhorsePleaides, and many other magazines and anthologies, have won a Pushcart Prize, and were cited several times as notable stories in Best American Short Stories. Michael grew up on the Jersey Shore, received a degree in music from Princeton University, and played the drums professionally for a number of years. He has an M.F.A. in fiction from The Ohio State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri. His new novel, Bluff, about a magician and a cardsharp, is forthcoming in April 2018.


Ph.D.      2003       University of Missouri
M.F.A.    2000       The Ohio State University
B.A.        1992       Princeton University

Teaching Interests:

Creative writing, fiction
20th/21st century American literature

Recent Courses:

Recent Publications: Fiction


Bluff. New York: Grove Atlantic/Mysterious Press (Forthcoming 2018).

Before He Finds Her Before He Finds Her. New York: Grove Atlantic/Mysterious Press (Forthcoming Feb 2015).

The Three-Day Affair. New York. Grove Atlantic/Mysterious Press (September 2012).The Three-

One Last Good Time: Stories. Winston-Salem, NC: Press 53 (February 2011).One Last Good Time

The Art and Craft of Fiction. Boston. Bedford/St. Martin’s (December 2012). The Art and Craft of Fiction





“The Musician’s Complete Guide to Underground Touring.” Pleiades 37.1 (2017): 3-12.

“Digits.” Mississippi Noir. New York: Akashic Books, 2016. 134-149.

“America, Etc.” One Teen Story 4.3 (2014): 1-19.

Reprint. “Animals.” The Pushcart Prize XXXIX: Best of the Small Presses
2015 Edition (Forthcoming).

“Animals.” Crazyhorse 83 (2013): 11-29.

“The Middle of Corn, U.S.A.” Fiction Magazine 58 (2012): 52-66.

“A Story with Strong, Graceful Hands.” Harvard Review 41 (2011): 200-211.

“Two Truths and a Lie.” PRISM International 49.1 (Fall 2010): 10-28.

“Texas Justice.” Iron Horse Literary Review 12.1 (February 2010): 1-16.

“The Highest Point in Delaware.” Fiction International 42 (Fall 2009): 57-62.

“Ida the Whistler.” Pleiades 29.2 (Summer 2009): 81-94.

“Mediation.” Crazyhorse 75 (Spring 2009): 31-44.

“Metamorphosis.” Prairie Schooner 83.1 (Spring 2009): 90-103.

“Maximum Security.” The Southern Review 44.1 (Winter 2008): 113-127.

Essays & Reviews

“All about Anthologies” Writer’s Digest 91.8 (March/April 2017): 30-33.

“Into the Pot: An Essay on Fiction and Morality.” Pleiades 35.1 (Winter 2015): 65-67.

“Get Your Short Story Published.” Writer’s Digest 91.8 (Nov/Dec 2011): 30-33.

“Writing the Jersey Shore in the Age of Reality TV.” The Millions (September 2011).

“Lit Journal Submissions 101.” Writer’s Digest 90.8 (Nov/Dec 2010): 20-22.

“In Defense of Starting Early.” The Writer’s Chronicle 41.4 (February 2009): 66-71.