I was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. I always wanted to be a teacher, and on the last day of school, I would collect the binders that my classmates were gleefully throwing away so that I could play school and regrade their papers during the summer months. In high school I became very involved in writing for my school newspaper and acting in school plays. During summers, I always attended camps geared towards creative writing.
I had a fantastic undergraduate experience at St. Mary's College of Maryland, where I was part of a creative, intellectual community where my nerdiness suddenly became cool. At St. Mary's, I nourished my creative writing, learned photography, and began studying computers and the internet. I then attended Auburn University, where I earned my MA in English, followed by University of South Carolina, where I earned my MFA in Poetry. During graduate school, I bifurcated my studies to focus both on my love of writing and my growing understanding of the ways in which our culture is becoming digital. It was during graduate school that I began About Curves with my mom, and began learning html.
I moved to Miami in 2003 to teach at the University of Miami. I live in South Beach, where I thoroughly enjoy living in an urban beach community. My home is eight blocks away from the beach, and I prefer to ride my bicycle around the beach. At school, I really enjoy developing new classes to challenge myself as a teacher, and enjoy using technologies like blogging and wikis in the classroom.
In June, 2012, I will marry my fellow poet and UM faculty member Zachery Hickman. We're getting married in Negril, Jamaica, at an eco-friendly treehouse resort. When we get home, I hope to find a Labradoodle puppy to rescue. My first dog, Delia, who I was lucky enough to get licked by from 1998-2010 was a constant reminder than life is about love (not work!) and I'm looking forward to my next dog.
In my free time, I still love to write, and struggle to get published in a society where very few people read poetry. I love sailing, swimming, and anything that has to do with the water. I like to travel and try to go on as many trips as possible every year. I also love live music, so I frequently go to music festivals around the country. I have seen my favorite band more than a hundred times, which may sound ridiculous to you, but is actually "not so much" according to other fans. I like to sew and create costumes. I also love to play ultimate frisbee, and my geekiest hobby is collecting Disney pins.
My current language pet peeves are using "would" for anything that happened once in the past and "basically."
I have a lot of really good friends from over the years who live across the country, and one of my faults is not being good at staying in touch. So, if you're one of those people, e-mail me!
You can also find me on Facebook.