My Writing Life

Upon earning my MA in English with a minor in Creative Writing, I taught writing for twelve years, first at John Carroll University and then at Lorain County Community College. During that time, I published my first poetry chapbook entitled Heartscape. I also began writing my first novel, which took me seven years to complete.

Published in 2018, Burden of Remembrance is my tribute to the Greatest Generation. It is the story of a multi-generational family living in post-World War II Cleveland who struggle to remain united as they grapple with individual painful memories of abandonment, betrayal, sickness, and war. On the verge of healing, they are further traumatized by the revelation of long-buried, shameful secrets which force them to question the boundaries of loyalty, mercy, and forgiveness.

In 2022, I published my second novel A Melancholy Union, which was inspired by the lives of my great-great-grandparents Samuel and Julia, survivors of the Irish Potato Famine who emigrated to the United States in the 1850s. Weaving meticulous research with my imagination, I gave them voice to recount their lives through alternating chapters. In this way, they draw us into their turbulent world shaped by hunger, hope, poverty, love, sickness, and haunting memories of Civil War battlefields. Finally, they describe how, in struggling to care for their family, they make desperate decisions leading to unimagined consequences.

I began my writing career as a poet, a practice which deeply informs my prose as well. Through vivid imagery and lyrical cadence, my novels draw readers into the tumultuous lives of my characters. My in-depth research involves both reading about and visiting specific locations, which enables me to infuse my stories with historic and geographic details which transport my readers to an authentic era.

In January, 2023 I published my second poetry chapbook entitled Kissing the Stone.

Currently, I am writing a psychological/mystery novel as well as a new collection of poetry.

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