I am passionate about language and what we can do with it.
Described variously as “writing shrink,” “linguistic surgeon,” “story whisperer,” “grammar goddess,” and “style witch,” I have worked for over 26 years with academic writers and novelists, professionals and first-timers, memoirists, storytellers, dissertationists, journalists, non-native speakers—in short, with wordwrights of every ilk. My professional interests, experience, and approach span writing, editing, teaching, foreign-language acquisition, learning diversity, vocal performance, improvisational theater, and, most recently, voice-acting.
An itinerant childhood in Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East awakened me early to the delights and quirky corners of language. A BA in literature and music and an MFA in creative writing further tuned my ear to that aspect of writing that E.B. White called “a journey into sound.” My own writing practice, and over two decades of teaching, with its intense focus on listening, provided me both the opportunity to hear more deeply the words we use every day, and a means of exploring, expanding, and sharing the realm of verbal expression.
Whether unblocking a traffic jam on the page or in the psyche, hewing structure from raw material, guiding a spoken-word artist from the microcosm of the perfect detail to the macrocosm of pacing, tailoring the writing process to a particular learning style, demystifying grammar, or exposing the music and logic of English to those visiting it from another language, I’m all about how words work.