The Cheapskate Intellectual

A journey through matters of spirit, sustainability, and self-reliance

Essay on study-abroad teaching forthcoming in Engaging the Age of Jane Austen (University of Iowa Press, 2019)

I couldn’t be happier that my essay “Gain Experience!: Literature, Travel, and Life” (echoing Mary Wollstonecraft’s famous advice) is forthcoming in Engaging the Age of Jane Austen, edited by Bridget Draxler and Danielle Spratt (University of Iowa Press, 2019). I’m so grateful to Bridget and Danielle for this opportunity. In the essay, I share particular […]

Read more

Pushcart Nomination for “The Serpent!”

I’m delighted to announce that my story “The Serpent,” which appeared in The Hopper Issue III, has been nominated by the journal’s editors for a Pushcart Prize. Many thanks to the wonderful folks at The Hopper and congratulations to my fellow nominees!

Read more

Writing in buckets.

  A new posting at Luther’s “Ideas and Creations” blog on a writing technique that’s working well in a busy time:  

Read more


When you’re a woman, you try to live in hope, and you try to teach others (especially younger women) the same. Because, after all, the world doesn’t accommodate itself to you and never has. You are the one who must make way, yield the floor, decline to give way to professionally discrediting anger, sit incredulously […]

Read more

The men at the wall.

Two men in tunics and hose, their backs to me, lean on the wall of a castle balcony and look down at something happening on the other side. A slim tree leafs out elegantly to the left. They’re relaxed, intent, faces totally hidden. What’s going on down there, in this picture’s entirely private world? Framed […]

Read more

Little bitty Christmas trees.

A rerun from 2011 that’s been on my mind. Merry Christmas, y’all. — “I’ve been a pastor for more than 15 years, and I am still amazed at folks in nursing homes, many unable to remember the majority of their own lives, who will begin to sing and nod and clap when they hear Christmas […]

Read more