I've been teaching since 1996. After 21 years at the University of North Texas, I've begun teaching high school English. My specialty is 19th century British literature, especially the works of Charles Dickens. My secondary specialty is Romantic poetry. However, I've taught virtually every era of British and world literature, as well as a more than 100 sections of a variety of composition and technical writing courses.
I think it's vitally important to help students to connect with the material they're studying. In order to do this, I employ a variety of media to help auditory, visual, and tactile learners grasp the concepts we're exploring. Once students see writers as real people exploring real issues, they can connect with literature in a whole new way. As a writing teacher, I strive to encourage my students to seek mastery of their writing technique. Good writing technique is the same no matter the topic. When writing is based in solid, masterful technique rather than on intuitive knowledge, fluidity results.
I have been fortunate to routinely receive outstanding teaching evaluations and was recognized by the UNT Honors College in 2010. In 2015, I was nominated for a UNT Foundation Outstanding Lecturer Award. I've been published in Dickens Studies Annual, which takes only 15 articles per year, and I was a contributor to the Oxford New Dictionary of National Biography.
Ph.D. in 19th-century British literature, University of North Texas, 2000
M.A. in British literature, University of North Texas, 1992B.A. in English, Austin College, 1985
I "fell in love" with Charles Dickens when I was just six years old, after my parents took me to see the film version of the musical "Oliver!" I was mesmerized by the story, and decided then and there that Charles Dickens was my favorite author. The fact that I had not yet learned to read seemed to be a very minor detail.
Two years later, my uncle took me to see the film "Scrooge," which is a musical adaptation of A Christmas Carol. When my mother told me that Dickens wrote this story as well, I was convinced that he must have been the greatest writer in the whole world.
I was hooked.
Once I started reading Dickens myself, I've never turned back.
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