Date of Award

Fall 12-7-2016

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Professional Writing (MAPW)



Committee Chair/First Advisor

Dr. William Rice


Dr. Andrew Plattner


The theme of each short work will portray three life-changing intersections: The first short work will follow a man named, Early Easter, an elderly man struggling with the decision to let loss and age give way to bitterness or accept the ever-changing world and find companionship in Ayotunde, a fourteen-year-old boy. The second work will portray the conflicting paths of Idella, a newly-divorced mother, and Grace, her daughter, who is struggling to navigate this change in her mother’s life; these woman learn that relationships are as deeply rooted as ivy and even harder to upheave, as they toil to rip the climbing vines from the earth. The last story will follow Shep, a young boy in a family of five, who desperately desires to prove to his brothers that he is valiant and brave by assuming the role of Scarlet’s protector, venturing out to slay a mythological bear. As Shep seeks out his enemy, he discovers the consequences of rushing carelessly into the world of adulthood and falls victim to an unforeseen foe, which his naivety hid from him.

For the novel, the story will be a psychological thriller (more so literary than genre specific), chronicling the events of a female protagonist (Jack) and her journey to find her runaway sister and discover the reason behind her sister’s disappearance: With the help of a seemingly otherworldly presence, Jack discovers complex and interconnected worlds that are locked deep in her subconscious. As she ventures forward, Jack discovers the secret to unlocking these parts of her mind, the link between her creative talents and her ability to travel to other dimensions, and the consequences of seeking the unknown.