I recently made three illustrations to go along with Melissa Matthewson’s “Pirate Radio, Like Desire” in The Rumpus—check it out, it’s a fantastic piece of writing.
My course, titled Human Topography: Sculpting Surprising, Broken—and Real—Characters for more Compelling Stories, will look at how we approach creating characters in fiction, and how we can dig deep within ourselves to craft lingering, noteworthy characterizations that make our pieces really pack a punch.
For more information on my workshop (including pricing and registration), and information on all the IWH workshops, click here.
My workshop last year sold out FAST, so if you’re interested, check it out now!
My art—leaning into it, being proud & public about it—is still all so new to me, but I’m taking a big, kinda cool step this week: I have my own Redbubble store!
If you’re not familiar with Redbubble, it’s an online marketplace where artists can upload their work and decide what products it’s available on, effectively helping us create easy-to-use online stores.
Grateful to have my flash CNF piece “Woodson” — about tall tales we tell ourselves and forest myths and all the ways we are lost—and found—in the woods in the flash nonfiction issue at Little Fiction/Big Truths:
Now I’ve come, with a backpack full of crackers, having told my parents I was at a friend’s house, to see how much nighttime I can take in. I stand, let the blue-black come for me, and it’s quiet, once the birds sound off: I hear trees creaking, branches cracking, evening animals I don’t know the names of emerge from their daylight slumbers.
Grateful to Troy Palmer and everyone at Little Fiction/Big Truths for publishing this piece; the issue is chock-a-block full of incredible work, and I can’t recommend it enough.
Thrilled to create this accompanying art for Melissa Ragsly’s fantastic short essay about her first car, Carolyn, at Hobart—check it out.
Rosalie stood still, caught her breath. The sky continued to bruise dark. Henry had told her that frogs were signs of good environments. That they died off fast when the air quality was bad. He’d told her to bring one back in a container for him to experiment on.
I’m so, so grateful to the editors for picking this up.
In the eighth “We Know So Little” post at Pidgeonholes—and the last before a brief hiatus—I write about the Mother of the Forest, a giant sequoia stripped of her bark in the 19th century & left to (slowly) die, and how we refuse to acknowledge the righteous life all around us:
Sequoias, black cherry in your backyard, a park down the street flush with chestnut and silver maple, a magnificent sycamore outside your office window—trees will outlive us all, and suddenly granting them cognizance, some inner life, is a frightening prospect. You think of the branches you ripped from trees and the leaves plucked out for fun, all the initials you carved, all the hurt, all of it.
In the fifth “We Know So Little” post at Pidgeonholes—my recurring series about being awed by the world around us—I explore the Osage orange and other evolutionary anachronisms, these things lost in time that yet persevere:
A thing evolves, typically adjacent to other things—coevolution. So a plant, for example, might evolve its fruit to be eaten a certain way by a certain species in order to ensure its seeds are properly dispersed. But in the case of evolutionary anachronism, one of the parts of this relationship dies off. And yet, the plant’s relic behavior remains, visible to us, pumping away like a still-warm, body-less heart.
(And here, the storyteller laughs — you have to, like it’s built into the narrative, a piece of coding hardwired, a signal to whoever’s speaking to stop, tilt their head back, and guffaw wildly.)
The boy, shy and sheepish, sat back and made a nest in the tall revenna and silver grass.
“My cousin Rachel taught me a game,” he said.
“What kind.” She was wary of boys and their games. This much she knew already.
“It’s called jinx.”
A huge thanks to the editors for taking a chance on this. I’m grateful.
In the fourth “We Know So Little” post at Pidgeonholes—my recurring series about being awed by the world around us—I talk about giant honey bees, their shimmering defense, and explore what we’d hear if we only stopped to listen:
But we just don’t know—can’t know, can we?—the full implications: what it is they whisper to one another, this throbbing message sent in nanoseconds, sent near the speed of light, means, or how it’s interpreted by a world we’re convinced we’re above.