At 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 28, novelist Richard Massey of Springdale will feature for the Ozark Poets and Writers Collective (OPWC).
Readings are held the last Tuesday of each month at Nightbird Books, 205 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. Massey will begin reading from his latest novel, “Municipal Tilt,” after a few attendees share their work via the open mike. The reading is free and open to the public.
“Municipal Tilt is my take on the great American novel,” Massey said. “The irony is that much of the story flows through people who aren’t from the United States.”
The story focuses on an upstart band of students. When they take to the streets in a hot local election, the stakes are clear enough. “A vacant seat on the city council. Industry versus the environment. The timeless pursuit of power. Campaigning in the inner city, the electioneers prove capable, enhancing their candidate’s chances when few thought they could. But deep forces churn, and as the election unfolds, the twin evils of race and class threaten to devour everyone—the good guys and the bad. An old secret told to damning effect. A political operative unhinged. And the unexpected rise of Eva Havlicek, the cunning beauty with a Cold War accent.”
While the novel is set in Columbus, Ohio, Massey said he was inspired by people and events from throughout his entire life.
Massey is also the author of The Southampton Chronicle, published in 2015, and its sequel, The Gascony Letters, due to publish in spring 2018. His journalism credits include stints at the Daily Mississippian, the Neshoba Democrat, the Clarksdale Press Register, the Galveston County Daily News, the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette, and the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal. He is currently the managing editor of The Zweig Letter, a trade publication for the architecture and engineering industry. When he was a much younger man, he lived a life of adventure. One summer spent in France, and another hitch-hiking across the United States—twice.
A native Texan, Richard Massey lived in New England, the Midwest, and the Deep South before settling in Northwest Arkansas in 2007. A career reporter with over a decade of experience, he cut his teeth at city hall and the courthouse. While he’s been to just about every juke joint on the Mississippi Delta, he also appreciates the Rembrandt collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. He has a bachelor’s degree in history from Ohio State University, and a master’s degree in journalism from Ole Miss.