Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts in Writing


Creative Writing

First Advisor

Michael Castro

Second Advisor

T. Glenn Irwin


The stories in this collection feature female characters, mainly grown women. The exception is "Ruby Begonia'· in which the eponymous main character is a little girl with a gift for seeing and believing in things others cannot see.

In "Homefront;· Peggy decides to leave her daughter with her mother-in-law in order to save herself. She suffers from depression. While leaving a daughter behind is not viewed as good mothering, it is infinitely better to having that daughter suffer the effects of her mother's illness.

In "Lessons Learned " the young teacher learns to work things out for the benefits of her two students, teaching them both a lesson, instead of concentrating on the perpetrator as most disciplinary codes demand. In so doing, she learns a lesson to look beyond what she observes.

Olivia's story is told in "Olivia." She is a woman who pursues what she wants, usually gets what she wants. and does not care who she hurts in the process. The story is told from the viewpoint of her newest victim.

"Good Advice" is the story of rearing children and being the children's parents and not their friends. The two main characters are sisters Mary and Joan and they observe the influences of modem society on child-rearing as they shop at a local mall. This story is a departure from the others in that it fits in the science fiction genre, but the main point of the story is that good advice is good advice. even if that advice is decades old.