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Gary Shteyngart: Little Failure

Writer Gary Shteyngart’s parents hoped he would grow up to be a doctor, or maybe an accountant. When it became clear he would be neither of those things, his mother gave him a nickname: Failurchka, or Little Failure. In his new memoir, Shteyngart owns the name and tells the poignant and funny story of a Soviet family emigrating to the consumerist promised land. Wednesday, Shteyngart joins Doug to talk about growing up from an awkward, asthmatic and runny-nosed kid to a 40-something, balding Manhattanite with a memoir to write. (Rebroadcast)

Gary Shteyngart [Amazon|Indiebound] is the author of the novels Super Sad True Love StoryAbsurdistan and The Russian Debutante's Handbook. His new memoir is called Little Failure. He teaches creative writing at Columbia University. His writing has appeared in the New YorkerGrantaEsquire and many other publications.

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.