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The Way Home

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The Way Home is a full-length young adult novel. The story is split between the perspectives of Theo and Ella, best friends from high school who are starting their freshman year in college. Neither is extremely excited about the start

The Way Home is a full-length young adult novel. The story is split between the perspectives of Theo and Ella, best friends from high school who are starting their freshman year in college. Neither is extremely excited about the start of the new phase of their lives; Theo struggles with severe anxiety and is just hoping to survive the four years; and dark memories in Ella's past don't seem to want to let her start over. A series of murders happening in town don't help their nerves at all, making it hard to focus on the "college experience." They were supposed to be there for each other... But then Ella goes missing, and Theo is left without a clue of where she went. While he searches for her desperately, she wakes up miles away from home, surrounded by strangers. In their efforts to find one another again, they instead find themselves presented with opportunities to study the impossible: magic. Things become stranger and stranger as murders, magic, police investigations, and ever-looming final exams begin to challenge Theo and Ella in ways they never expected. In writing this novel, I hoped to depict the transition from high school to college and the worries and wonders that come with it. The story is almost split directly in half, beginning with normal school life and shifting into the world of magic. The conflicts presented to the characters during the first half, such as grades, majors, and socializing, persist throughout the second half, but are also metaphorized once the characters begin studying magic. I chose to include a protagonist with an anxiety disorder because I believe mental disabilities are not represented enough in YA literature, though it is something that many high school and college students deal with. I wanted to create a character that could inform others and that students with similar mental disorders could relate to. Additional themes I deal with include newfound independence, individuality, growth, and friendship.

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Date Created
2017-12

Erosion: A Collection of Poems

Description

Erosion: A Collection of Poems consists of ten prose poems that explore the processing of trauma through a single lens. We follow the work’s main character as she navigates recovery following a medical trauma in Peru from which she ought

Erosion: A Collection of Poems consists of ten prose poems that explore the processing of trauma through a single lens. We follow the work’s main character as she navigates recovery following a medical trauma in Peru from which she ought to have died. The pieces challenge the readers to immerse themselves within her narrative to understand the isolation that trauma ushers in, as she struggles to know her own newfound aloneness.

While the poems illustrate the complexity of one’s experience with both PTSD and its stages of recovery (e.g., emergency, numbness, intrusive/repetitive, integration), they are anchored in the sensory, the concrete. Amidst the terror of the symptoms at the most basic, raw level, she attempts to reclaim selfhood, which involves wrestling with philosophical suicide, reconciling realities, numbness and the widening of a barrier, stunning intimacies, the craving to feel, and both the desire and the need to connect authentically without being able to satiate such inclinations.

Influenced by the works of Frank Bidart, Claudia Rankine, James Longenbach, and Carolyn Forché, the pieces rely heavily upon rhythm and spacing, imagery, and associative linkages throughout the work to craft a sense of physical, intellectual, and emotional movement within the space.

The collection focuses upon the narrative of one survivor of trauma, and though traumas may be experienced differently, and while PTSD may manifest itself in profoundly diverse ways, the pieces aim to capture the shared foundation of the experience — the isolation and the pure, unadulterated pain — in order to cast a universal veil onto the exploration, providing the audience with insight into one of trauma’s most important facets.

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Created

Date Created
2016-05

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The Bible Retold

Description

A short, fantasy novel using essential characters, themes, and events as depicted in the Bible.

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Created

Date Created
2014-05

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Ghosts in the Shade of Cottonwood Trees: A Family History Narrative

Description

This work of creative nonfiction explores the life of the writer's great-grandmother, Madge Richardson, and her sister Annie Richardson Johnson, as daughters of polygamist families and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the religious colony

This work of creative nonfiction explores the life of the writer's great-grandmother, Madge Richardson, and her sister Annie Richardson Johnson, as daughters of polygamist families and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the religious colony of Colonia Díaz, Chihuahua, Mexico. The piece depicts several highs and lows in the late 19th to early 20th century pioneer town, with an emphasis on the mass exodus and devastation that occurred during the Mexican Revolution.

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Date Created
2020-05