P E D A G O G Y
After leaving the corporate world, I returned to school to earn a Master's Degree in English and began teaching and writing. I wrote for a wide audience that included popular magazines, scholarly journals, and textbooks. Conference papers took me all over the country to speak on myriad subjects ranging from fairy tales, comics and science fiction to Renaissance and Medieval literature, and all things noir.
As a professor at California State University, East Bay I taught critical reading and writing to a culturally diverse mix of college students. I also taught many literature courses including Comics as American Literature, Short Film, Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature, American Master Works, Children's Literature, Shakespeare and more.
I've started a new venture in the publishing world that feeds my need to write and to create beautiful designs.
EVERWHEN Press and YELLOW DUCK Press
Yellow Duck Press is the home of children's picture books. The Kitty Cat Cousins series is for children between the ages of 3 and 8. Some Kitty Cat Cousin books are written in a graphic novel/comic book style. All are paired with an activity and coloring book that has letter tracing, alphabet coloring, and a story.
Yellow Duck Press also produces journals for kids encouraging thankfulness and one that asks kids to turn off their devices and turn on their imaginations.
Parents, grandparents, and guardians can find creativity supplies for children at Yellow Duck Press. These include blank comic books, cursive practice workbooks, and composition notebooks (college-ruled and dotted midline writing paper). Some contain a Live Margin Edge, a special feature that makes each book stand out. Riffle the pages like a flip book to reveal a rising rocketship, a spider descending, a jellyfish rising, or a growing alphabet.
As an educator with over 15 years of experience, I began writing for a child's whimsical nature and imagination.
See all kid's titles at: https://www.amazon.com/author/yellowduck.press
Everwhen Press is a boutique enterprise with a small offering of carefully curated designs including journals, graph paper notebooks, adult coloring books, blank comic books, and cursive practice workbooks.
Everwhen Press also produces 45-Day Sobriety and Living Clean reflective journals as well as the Just Today workbook.
Many of Everwhenís books are unique and feature a Live Margin Edge, a margin that works like a flip book. Riffle the pages and watch a spider descend, a jellyfish rise, or horses gallop.
A variety of Everwhen journals have beautiful public domain wraparound artwork covers. Too much of our historical artwork is ignored and just stuffed away in a museum, luckily some museums feel the same way and offer beautiful paintings and engravings to the public.
See more at: https://www.amazon.com/author/everwhen.press
ONCE an Educator, Always and Educator
When I began teaching, I often taught intensive writing, or what was once called remediation, and those classes are filled with students who are uncomfortable with texts. They donít want to read them and they donít want to write them because they havenít been successful with the written word. So when students arrived for the first day of class with a graphic novel in hand, I know they think my class is going to be easy. And that was my goal. If students and readers believe intensive reading and writing is going to be fairly painless, they will relax long enough to think critically about what is going on in the graphic novelís panels. Instead of parroting back written text, theyíll have to interpret the panels, and join the conversation taking placing on the pages of a graphic novel. What's more students expand their college-level vocabulary by finding visual definitions for words, and surprisingly, visual vocabulary seems to "stick," showing up used properly in student essays.
Comics are still important to me, especially as an educator. As a contributor to the now defunct New York-based Graphic Novel Reporter, I was lucky enough to visit and interview some of the most creative people on the pop culture scene. If you get the chance to visit your local comic convention, do it! It's a great way to spend a day.
For college-level comic reading, assignment suggestions and more, click on >Graphic Novels for the College Classroom
Why visuals in the college classroom?
Visuals can also teach argumentation and underlying assumptions, or warrants - those fundamental beliefs taken for granted by both readers andwriters. Single-panel cartoons (The New Yorker or political) are great for teaching implicit assumptions by asking what a reader needs to know in order to understand the joke or to create a caption to accompany a visual.
One of the easiest ways to teach rhetoric, including ethos, pathos, logos and logical fallacies is through the use of visuals, especially TV advertisements.
For college-level aids and assignments using advertisements to teach rhetoric, click on >Grammar/Rhetoric for the College Classroom