“Macbeth,” and a Question: Is “Hamilton” Worth the Hype?

Lately I’ve been posting about “Macbeth,” a play I’ve thoroughly enjoyed teaching. But what does that have to do with the play “Hamilton?” Well actually, if you’ve seen “Hamilton” (or at least if you’ve listened to the soundtrack), you’d know the answer to that question. Or obviously, as you have probably guessed if you aren't …

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Explain the Porter Monologue in “Macbeth” or Just Skip Over It?

Some more notes on teaching “Macbeth”: First, don’t worry—my next post won’t be about this play. And second, though Shakespeare and his language are often seen as “high and mighty,” in so many ways “Macbeth” can shatter this illusion for inexperienced students. I’d say that’s for better, because I’m in favor of making all literature …

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Publication: “Creatures of Habit” in “101 Words”

Last month “101 Words” published my piece of flash fiction “Creatures of Habit,” which you can read by clicking here. If you had to make a guess regarding the conceit behind “101 Words,” I bet you would get it right! Everything submitted to the website has to be exacting 101 words long, and their submission …

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Publication: “Creativity School” in “Cleaver Magazine”

Earlier this month “Cleaver Magazine” published “Creativity School,” a piece of flash fiction that I wrote. You can read it by clicking on the link here. I’m not quite sure where the story came from, except that I woke one morning thinking it would be funny if a real-life student was transported into a Dr. …

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Wild Wild Documentary: Growing Up in Eastern Oregon (p. 1)

“Wild Wild Country” is a pretty darn good documentary. It’s on Netflix, and you might have heard reviewers, bloggers, or fellow teachers at your school recommend it. Leah and I finished it recently, and it is very much worth the time—six, one-hour episodes, which honestly you’ll probably just binge in a day; it’s that engaging. …

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Addendum: Texts I Taught This Year and EDGAR ALLAN POE

Recently I wrote about both the well-received texts I taught this school year (Of Mice and Men, “The Cremation of Sam McGee”) and the “misses” (The Picture of Dorian Gray, Heart of Darkness). Not that anything here is to say that the “misses” weren’t texts students didn’t learn from. For example, though “Julius Caesar” can …

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The Great, the Good, and the OK: Texts I Taught This Year

With finals going currently, here are some thoughts on novels, stories, and plays I used in my classroom over the last school year. It’s always interesting to experience something as a student and then as a teacher. Take Heart of Darkness: the dialogue is richer than what I remember from high school, and the novel is …

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One Year in North Carolina (or: How I Got a Job After 90 Rejections)

This weekend Leah and I have lived in North Carolina for a year. There are many things I could reflect upon, given the anniversary, but when I think back, what comes most to mind is rejection. Now, things a year ago with Leah were going great—she wasn’t the one rejecting me. And things with the …

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