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About

Here are some photos my family would be very pleased to share with you had you asked (and probably even had you not). They're from the '90s because my vibe peaked early. It's fine.

Here I am with a friend. I've made many friends over many years, most of them sassy and reactive and passionate about things like leaping, lunging, bucking, squealing, and eating Sour Patch Kids. I myself share most, if not all, of these traits.

And here I am with Meatloaf. I don't know anything about the context of this photo and neither--somehow--do my parents. Sorry. But what I do know is that I became a teenager who  became an adult who loves a good rock opera, and that Bat Out of Hell neatly summarizes my aesthetic interests as a writer.

 

So thank you, Meatloaf.

As a writer, I'm interested in repurposing, reimagining, and subverting various tropes from genres like SFF and gothic horror to reflect what it's like to be alive, today, in a body, moving through the world - as one does. In my case: what it's like to be mixed-race. I also like to play with structure and form to enact the different ways we experience memory and the passage of time. 

What else? I once harbored dreams of becoming an Olympic show-jumper. I used to have a Myspace. I am partial to wearing black and very dark blue. I miss the ocean. 

Teaching

My interests as a teacher are informed by the work I do as a writer. I have taught college-level courses on gothic horror and monsters and the literary imagination as well as creative writing workshops in short fiction and poetry. For every workshop I teach, I strive to create a community-oriented environment that prioritizes thoughtfulness and respect, acknowledges and is sensitive to the needs of individuals from , and allows its participants to safely practice curiosity, discovery, and creative risk-taking.
 
At the introductory level, my goal as an instructor is for students to conclude a semester of workshop with an enhanced sense of self-understanding and a newfound or renewed sense of excitement about reading and writing fiction. To that end, I find it important to thoughtfully curate (and update) the assigned texts of an introductory workshop to include an eclectic mix of living authors of varying ages, identities, and interests working across a range of genres and modes. I often pair a group of short stories by contemporary authors with at least one thematically or formally relevant work from decades or centuries past to suggest a kind of literary dialogue through the ages -- and, in some cases, to demonstrate how living writers might renovate or subvert canonical structures, plots, archetypes and conceits to suit their own aesthetic and political concerns or to reflect their lived experience. Readings are complemented by short weekly writing exercises that ask students to engage creatively with an aspect of craft present in one or more of the texts, and to integrate that aspect with observations, memories, or inventions. These guided assignments offer structure to those who prefer to work from prompts: students may then choose to expand an assignment into a full short story for workshop or to write a story on their own.

At the intermediate or advanced level, I hope to provide emerging writers with opportunities to hone the ways in which they articulate the mechanisms of craft present in their work while encouraging them to consider new methods of exploring their unique literary obsessions. Among such methods might be a shift in genre, form, perspective, or tense; a series of conversations informed by new reading material or by a guest-lecturing author; identifying and attempting different approaches to revision and reflecting upon the results; or some individualized assignment or series of assignments designed to meet the specific needs of an enterprising student. 


I strongly believe that at all levels of instruction, the learning goals of a creative writing student are intensely personal and as much emotional as intellectual. In a workshop, I consider myself less a "teacher" than I do a "facilitator," using my experience as a writer (and as a lifelong student of writing myself!) to help students make valuable connections to their own experiences, imaginations and ingenuity.
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