Missing Persons by Stephanie Carpenter


Missing Persons by Stephanie Carpenter

from 14.95

Winner of the 2017 Press 53 Award for Short Fiction

8.5 x 5.5, 174 pages

ISBN 978-1-941209-63-9 (paperback)

ISBN 978-1-941209-66-0 (hardcover)

Add To Cart

Praise for Missing Persons


Inventive, magical, compelling, and strange in just the way life and people are strange. Stephanie Carpenter is a rare and wonderful talent.

—George Saunders, author of Tenth of December: Stories and Lincoln in the Bardo



Stephanie Carpenter’s protagonists are mostly from socioeconomic backgrounds that teach them the need to brace themselves for what’s to come, and while they want to believe that things aren’t as bad with their loved ones present, they’re also aware that they have no way of knowing. These stories are piercingly smart on how unsettling our everyday intimacies can be, and heartening in their faith in our responsibility to always make sure that we’ve nevertheless done what we could.  

—Jim Shepard, author of The Book of Aron and The World to Come


“These stories are diverse in voice, setting, conflict, and style. Ms. Carpenter’s skills shine in this collection, as does her ability to step into the shoes of a wide range of people while peeling back the complex layers of their lives. For a group of stories to rise above 230 other manuscripts competing for my attention, every story has to deliver an interesting, satisfying, and powerful experience, and Missing Persons did just that. I’m looking forward to sharing this collection of stories with readers everywhere.”

—Kevin Morgan Watson, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Press 53 who served as judge for the competition

About the Author

Stephanie Carpenter was born and raised in Traverse City, Michigan. She holds an MFA from Syracuse University and a PhD in English and Creative Writing from the University of Missouri. Her current project, a pair of novellas about professional female artists in nineteenth-century New England, has received fellowships from the American Antiquarian Society, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and the Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library. She currently teaches creative writing and literature at Michigan Tech University, in the northernmost reaches of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Missing Persons is her debut story collection.