Michael Varga

Michael Varga

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Author Archives: Michael Varga

Editor's Note: In August 2014, Michael Varga published Under Chad's Spell, a full-length memoir based on the same period of time as his essay "Addicted to Chad," first published in these pages. Congratulations, Michael!

Michael Varga is a retired American diplomat, who spent much of his career in the Middle East. His short story "Collapsing Into Zimbabwe" earned first prize in The Toronto Star's annual short-story competition. The story was reprinted in The State Department Magazine. The BBC broadcast his short story "There Are No Kangaroos In Egypt," and four of his plays have been produced and one published (Payable Upon Return; Juniper Press, 1983). His essay was used by the U.S. Peace Corps as the introduction to a book, Uncommon Journeys: Peace Corps Adventures Across Cultures, published in 2004. Other stories, essays and poems of his have appeared in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The South Bend Tribune, The Foreign Service Journal, Commonweal, Archer, Earthwise, The New Jersey Poetry Monthly, Notre Dame Magazine, The Scholastic, Cabin Fever, and Rider University Magazine. He is at work on a novel about the Peace Corps and the Foreign Service.

Contributions by Michael Varga

Spring 2011 Issue

Addicted to Chad

Second Prize, 2010 Literal Latte Essay Award.
When I was a child and my parents argued, my father used to escape to the basement and listen to his short-wave radio. Growing up in Philadelphia, I knew nothing of a wider world until I snuck down to the cluttered, messy cellar and eavesdropped behind the stacks of magic-markered wooden storage boxes and shelves of re-labeled peanut butter jars of nails and screws.

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