I spent some two-and-a-half decades working at newspapers — as a police reporter and photographer, as a features writer and photographer, as an assignments editor (coordinating a staff of reporters/writers, photographers, and editors), and as a copy editor (working closely with writers and editors, and designing pages for publication – in print and on the Internet).
Beginning in 2008, I taught writing and literature in college classrooms – at a community college where I often worked with students whose skills were not quite yet at college level, and later there and at a private four-year university, where I worked in the First Year Writing Program.
At the university, I taught a class called “War Stories” – a literature class that promotes the universal skills of reading, analysis, research, and presentation – but which I designed to draw entirely from the literature of war and military conflict. (For examples of what we read, select the “War Stories” tab above.)
One of my primary goals for this blog has been to represent the many elements that make up the experience of war – for participants of every stripe, from warriors to observers who support the war, as well as observers who oppose it.
Another primary goal is to represent the many experiences that people encounter in their daily lives – experiences that amount to personal battles and wars. At times, these battles can include struggling with oppression and suppression of voice, struggling with social inequity, or struggling with chronic illness, including persistent mental illness and disorders.