Date of Award

Spring 5-2015

Degree Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Chair

Steven Barthelme

Committee Chair Department


Committee Member 2

Andew Milward

Committee Member 2 Department


Committee Member 3

Monika Gehlawat

Committee Member 3 Department



The short stories contained in this manuscript are mostly of the realist stripe, with a few concessions made to my more fabulist tendencies. Each is about men and women being forced to relive their old lives or finding themselves at the cusp of new ones, propositions which prove simultaneously attractive and repulsive. By the end of each story, it is my hope to transmit that the characters have survived somewhat intact, though reconstituted. There is a man in grief over the death of the wife he couldn’t stop cheating on, adults trick-or-treating at the expense of their children’s youths, a young woman who obsesses after a high school crush post-divorce. Former enfant terribles get the band back together for reasons that compromise their ethos. Best friends disappear into thin air. A young man is forced to face the consequences of his tendencies toward historical revisionism in his art. An all-night lock-in at a skating rink serves as the venue for confrontations intimate and violent. Ultimately, my hope is that these stories say something about desperate people and what happens when our nostalgia is brought into conflict with the inevitability of aging, the things we create, and how others see us.

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