Poor Folk sometimes translated as Poor People, is the first novel by Fyodor Dostoevsky, written over the span of nine months between 1844 and 1845. Dostoevsky was in financial difficulty because of his extravagant lifestyle and his developing gambling addiction; although he had produced some translations of foreign novels, they had little success, and he decided to write a novel of his own to try to raise funds.
Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky (1821 – 1881), sometimes transliterated as Dostoyevsky, was a Russian novelist, philosopher, short story writer, essayist, and journalist. Dostoevsky's literary works explore human psychology in the troubled political, social, and spiritual atmospheres of 19th-century Russia, and engage with a variety of philosophical and religious themes. His most acclaimed novels include Crime and Punishment (1866), The Idiot (1869), Demons (1872), and The Brothers Karamazov (1880). Dostoevsky's body of works consists of 12 novels, 4 novellas, 16 short stories, and numerous other works. Many literary critics rate him as one of the greatest novelists in all of world literature, as multiple of his works are considered highly influential masterpieces.
His 1864 novella Notes from Underground is considered to be one of the first works of existentialist literature.