The Work

Stubble

Creative Nonfiction

I have a co-worker who reminds me of my dad. He’s naturally affectionate, and I often see him reach out to give someone a pat on the back, only to withdraw without touching them. It makes me sad. I’m no apologist for bad male behavior, and I have no patience for #notallmen, which deliberately misses the point women are making when we speak up about harassment and assault. But I find it isolating and lonely that in our culture male touch is almost always sexualized. I had the gift of a physically affectionate father and this essay is meant to honor that.

Gristle

Creative Nonfiction
I’d never heard of Chad when I joined the Peace Corps in 1993. When I got the assignment, I went to a travel agency to locate the country on a world map.

Choice

Creative Nonfiction
I joined the Peace Corps in 1993.  Mostly I did it for the adventure, but people often mistook me for an idealist, and they still…

We Have Peace

Creative Nonfiction
Former President Jimmy Carter arrived in a small plane at what everyone referred to as the “Doba airstrip;” though how anyone could distinguish it…

You Have to Believe in Something

Flash Nonfiction
I joined the Peace Corps in 1993.  Mostly I did it for the adventure, but people often mistook me for an idealist, and they still…

“Platforms” Are Overrated

The Business of Writing
Any author starting out today is likely to hear the same advice from agents, publishers, and even well-meaning writer friends. That advice? Build your…

Testimony

Creative Nonfiction
Helene was humble and shy. At school, though she sat near the front, she never spoke. In the crush of ninety students, it was weeks before I even realized she was in my class. Then I would see her, watching me with wide, clear eyes, taking everything in.