At Work

Monuments and Memory: Working at Arlington National Cemetery

“It was an alternate world, where the dead came everyday, and we treated it as normal.”

Apr 04, 2017
Writing Behind Walls

Teaching a creative writing workshop at a men’s prison in Iowa.

Apr 04, 2017
Watching White Kids

“It occurred to me that maybe they didn’t see me at all.”

Feb 22, 2017
The Men in My Office

“The office is a different place after the investigation. No one wants to look at me or speak to me.”

Feb 15, 2017
Why I Burned the Forest

Destruction and regeneration on Florida’s Forgotten Coast.

Feb 14, 2017
Walking in Memphis

On trying to do good and live up to my father's expectations.

Feb 09, 2017
When Your Body is the Lesson: On Art Modeling

In practice, this gig is easier than expected. It’s my mind that throws me off.

Is Your TV Turned On? True Stories from the Cable Trenches

“People say a lot of things when they can’t watch television.”

Jan 19, 2017
The Surgical Resident Life

“Alternating ecstasy and despair characterize resident life in particular, and medical practice in general.”

One Life, Going Forward: Why I Quit Teaching in 2016

“Like most people in education, I wanted to make a difference.”

Jan 04, 2017
My Low-Wage Job at the Circus

Not one of those big, tacky circuses—something more European and intimate.

Nov 10, 2016
When Your Family Business Isn’t a Family

“It was disingenuous to pretend we were all in this out of love.”

Nov 02, 2016
The Writer Is In

“Storytellers came to me looking for connection—which was, of course, the very thing I’d been craving myself.”

Oct 31, 2016
Vegetables for a Dead President

“We were often unaware of the ghosts working the land beside us.”

Oct 18, 2016
Common Usage Problems

A high school English teacher considers the systems that control much more than grammar.

Oct 06, 2016
My Life in the Romance Novel Industry

“Who was I to say what women should be allowed to read?”

Sep 27, 2016
Clean Eating and Pure Loving: My Life as a Whole Foods Cashier

“When he removed his hairnet, long, golden hair came tumbling out.”

Sep 02, 2016
My Early Fame

We wanted to become artists. Instead, we worked for them.

Jun 20, 2016
The Land of Sweets

The Nutcracker, Disneyland, and the Better World

Nov 27, 2015
Death Package

“I am paid to perform mundane clerical tasks, not to have opinions.”

Oct 22, 2015