Arts & Letters Program
Writers must always balance writing for themselves and writing for a more public audience. My function as a writing instructor, then, is to create an atmosphere in which students might explore and approach that balance. I encourage students to be creative writers and critical readers in poetry workshops, modern and contemporary literature courses, editing practicum courses, and sense of place and travel writing independent studies.
My rural Kentucky background has given me a strong sense of place, community, and history, as well as a love for stories. Stories are why I often keep long office hours, strike up conversations with strangers, and travel to out-of-the-way places. I am at Prescott College because its philosophy validates my own process of learning and my style of teaching: here I am encouraged to experiment and to cross disciplines, but most importantly, to spend time really working with students.
Serving as poetry editor and creative nonfiction co-editor for Alligator Juniper, Prescott College’s national literary journal, which has won three content awards from Associated Writing Programs, has been a particular joy for me. Several poems originally published in the journal have been featured on Verse Daily, and several stories have been reprinted in anthologies including Best of the West. I also serve as co-coordinator of the Southwest Writers Series, a series that brings both regionally and nationally-known authors to Prescott for public readings and community forums. Over the years, readers have included such writers as Edward Abbey, Sherman Alexie, Rodney Jones, Barbara Kingsolver and Galway Kinnell. More recently, readers have included Sherwin Bitsui, Ann Cummins, Bob Hicok, Tony Hoagland, and Rick Moody.
My own poems have appeared in journals such as Alaska Quarterly Review, Atlanta Review, Cimarron Review, and Crazyhorse. I am also the author of a poetry collection, Keeping Even (Stephen F. Austin University Press, 2011).