Stephen M. Vest is the editor and publisher of Kentucky Monthly magazine, which won the Governor’s Award in the Arts (Media) in 2005. Along with long-time journalist Michael Embry, he founded Kentucky Monthly in 1998, and today it has a circulation of more than 100,000 readers. He is the author of Unexpected Inheritance (Butler Books, 2014), two collections of his columns, and the publisher of the 2012 anthology Kentucky’s Twelve Days of Christmas and the cookbook Seasoned Cooking of Kentucky. Vest holds degrees from the University of Louisville (1986) and Murray State University (MFA, 2011). His work has appeared in The Journal of Kentucky Studies, Of Woods and Waters: An Outdoor Reader, and The Encyclopedia of Northern Kentucky. He is also editor of SAR Magazine, the National Society Sons of the American Revolution’s quarterly. A frequent speaker, Vest is an adjunct professor at Campbellsville University. He and his wife, Kay, reside in Frankfort. They have four children.
Mick Jagger was right. “You can’t always get what you want..
…Especially not from preceding generations of your own family. And you can’t always control the lessons or traits you pass on to your descendants, either.
This hard truth lies at the heart of author Stephen M. Vest’s nostalgic collection of family tales. Through a series of real-life vignettes exploring the relationships within his own feisty, fascinating family, Vest uncovers the many values, traits, and life lessons — often unexpected — that he inherited from his older parents, domineering grandmother, and other colorful characters who influenced his life.
Vest’s stories will strike a chord of warm familiarity with readers who will recognize a little bit of their own families, and maybe a little bit of themselves, on each page. They also affirm that the rest of Mick Jagger’s line is also true, especially when it comes to family:
“If you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.”