Michael Mlekoday is the author of The Dead Eat Everything (Kent State University Press, 2014), selected by Dorianne Laux as the winner of the 2012 Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize. In 2009, Mlekoday won the National Poetry Slam as a member of the St. Paul team, and returned the following year to coach the team to its second championship. Mlekoday's poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Ninth Letter, The Cincinnati Review, PANK, and other journals.

Michael was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and holds degrees from the University of Minnesota and Kansas State University. Having worked as a video game salesperson, a presidential campaign organizer, a pool hustler, a literary journal editor, and an itinerant preacher, Mlekoday is currently finishing an MFA in creative writing at Indiana University. Additionally, Mlekoday serves as Editor of Exploding Pinecone Press, an imprint of Button Poetry. Michael has never seen the ocean.