Life Writing

1st Place Artifacts Award Winner

Fireworks

The Universality of Latino Coming-of-Age Stories: Familism and Machismo

While the world of the following two vignettes (and the third one not included here) is fictional, an imitation of an already engaging story, the vignettes’ narratives still offer an echo of Cisneros’ compelling bildungsroman morals, which I hope resonate with new readers as much as they did with me.

1st Place Winner - 2020 Mahan First-Year Essay Award

Picture of cover of the book by Hurston

Literacy’s Effect on Black Women: A Personal Narrative

Janie’s narrative in Their Eyes Were Watching God exemplified this for me. It allowed me to parallel myself with Janie, to compare my experience as a Black woman with hers, and embolden me to find my own truth and seek fulfillment within my life.

Author self portrait in military dress

How Has Learning English Helped Me to Build Confidence and Communication Skills?

Last year, when I was in military service in South Korea, I was taking a subway to go home during my break. I was waiting for my subway, wearing a military uniform and carrying a backpack. Then one girl came…

My mom and I posing for a picture outside the former “Luecke house” on Lemp street in St. Louis, MO. The Luecke family reunion, organized by Eric Luecke, brought together more than fifty family members.

My Discovery of Interconnectedness

As a child, my mother would always tell me stories of my ancestors and distant relatives, but I tended to brush it off like it was not a big deal. At such a young age, my goal was not to…

Image shows a city street with the STL Arch in the background

My Home is Mine to Choose

I never really did belong anywhere.   Of course, the minute I say that I’ll be ambushed with the appalled exclamations of “How could you say that? That’s not true!” from anyone close enough to be within earshot, but it is…

holding hands photo

Hold Me

You’ve been anticipating this appointment all week. Since your last appointment, when the woman with the bobby, curly hair held you gently and changed your mind— convinced you that you weren’t crazy. Or like your mom said, hormonal. Or like…

2018 Mizzou Advantage Writing Contest: 3rd Place

Can You Hear Me Now?

Modern technology and media have changed how we communicate with one another as human beings. Where does our need for intimacy fit into this new communication formula? This essay analyzes how romantic relationships and digital intimacy function – particularly in…

2018 Mizzou Advantage Writing Contest: 2nd Place

riley dog photo

Dogs In The Laundry Room: Mental Health Treatment in Humans and Animals

I rarely think of the tornado. Sometimes, I forget it happened and am reminded by something small: a drizzling rain, the smell of the air in May, Pizza Rolls, a map of Oklahoma, barn swallows. Sometimes I tear my bedroom…

2018 Mizzou Advantage Writing Contest: 1st Place

tiger photo

Nature of the Beast

I’ve always been a glutton; there’s no denying that. I’ve always licked my plate clean, not out of obligation to use what I’ve been given, but to bring about a bliss that only eating can elicit. While I tear through…

Thanksgiving Ethnography: My Family's Fryers

According to Warren Belasco, what defines a family holiday meal is its planning, its timing, its timelessness, and most importantly – its meaning. My family’s annual Thanksgiving is planned by my grandmother on my father’s side of the family at…