Monthly Archives: September 2013

September 30


I’ve been teaching college freshmen for more than ten years now – first as a graduate instructor in Rhetoric and General Education Literature and now as an English professor at a small liberal arts school.  There have been countless sections of “required” writing and literature classes, and at the beginning of each one I asked […]

September 23

Beatrix Potter: Adorable Woodland Creatures or Stuff of Lifelong Nightmares?

When I was young, I was given The Tale of Peter Rabbit as part of an Easter basket, and that was basically all I knew of Beatrix Potter for most of my life. I kept Peter with my other books from childhood for decades, only rediscovering it when I was searching for something new to […]

September 19

Beautiful Books for Kids (and Adults, Too!)

I’m currently completing an MFA in Book Arts, so you can bet that I judge a book by its cover.  And binding.  And paper.  And overarching design.  I won’t refuse to read an aesthetically displeasing book (I have spent many hours over the course of my life with a Norton edition in my lap, after […]

September 10

Why I’m an English Professor

Six years ago, I was in the blur of the first few weeks in a tenure track job – sleep deprived from all the lesson planning, nervous that I wasn’t smart/fun/“adult” enough to have this job…  But I remember one specific Thursday afternoon amidst that stressful time: sitting in a circle of desks with twelve […]

September 06

Coming to the Table

Our family table was once my grandmother’s. It is on the smallish side with a delicate finish. It has traveled with me my whole adult life. It is where my friend Rick and I ate BBQ pork and drank large cans of Bottington’s after a night class in Virginia. It is where my husband and […]

You Must Revise Your Life

When I taught various sections of Interpretation of Literature in graduate school over the course of some years, my major texts would shift and change.  Pride and Prejudice one semester.  Frankenstein another.  Love in the Time of Cholera one semester. Everything is Illuminated another.  And drama?  Never the same play twice.  Swapping out texts was an opportunity […]

September 04

Welcome Ann!

I am beyond delighted to announce that another lettered lady is joining the fray.  We welcome Ann, who is (like a few other folks around here) an English professor in the Midwest. As her bio states, Her academic interests include Shakespeare & early modern theater, contemporary theater performance, book and textual studies, trauma studies, and […]

September 03

Leaning In without Falling Over

The only thing that stuck in my head from the media chatter that surrounded the release of Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead earlier this year was the tidbit that Sandberg refuses to disclose the details of her childcare arrangements. Oh sure, I thought, this millionaire lady encourages ordinary […]