Awards & Recognition:
Finalist - 2018 Public Poetry Contest
Third Place Prize in Poetry - 2017 LitQuake Writing Contest
Thanks for letting me wax nostalgic.
I started my career as an AmeriCorps volunteer in rural Utah, and it would forever inform my understanding of my own country.
I’ve been lucky enough to spend time in most regions of the United States. When I travel, I never just vacation. I move to a place, find work, and get to know its people. This is my primary inspiration for my writing. I want to understand how people interact, what they believe, what they care about. Through understanding one another, we can learn to live together.
Loving people means learning language – the sounds, the gestures, the expressions. In 2012, I earned my Bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of Tennessee and spent two years in nonprofit work involving translation & interpretation.
In 2016, I earned my MA in Creative Writing and Narrative Healthcare from Lenoir-Rhyne University, Asheville. I wrote a poetry collection about my Italian ancestors, trying to understand why they made the choices they made, trying to speak their language – long bred out of me through generations of education and assimilation.
Loving people also means learning bodies. In the past decade, I’ve completed 500 hours of study in tantric Hatha yoga. I taught small-group yoga and writing sessions for two years in Asheville, North Carolina. I even podcasted about this experience. I interviewed influential teachers and activists in the holistic health world about how they came to their roles and what practices support them as they work for social change.
After that I became a teacher. I worked in classrooms from coast to coast – from rural North Carolina to Silicon Valley, and back to industrial Baltimore. I published my first children's book in 2016 and helped integrate it into a Bay Area elementary school music curriculum the following year.
Now, in my home state of Maryland, I support fundraising efforts for the Association of Writers & Writing Programs. As a freelancer, I write professional content for creative businesses and publications. And in my spare time, I sprinkle my food with Old Bay.
Needless to say, I have a lot to write about. I’m currently working on a collection of fiction. You can read the stories that come out of my process in my flash fiction blog.