I write about books, education, politics, culture, and other topics on paper and the internet.
- I write for Cognoscenti, WBUR's website, about things like Kellyanne Conway, the shootings in Orlando, how to visit the dying, and crying babies in restaurants.
- I review lots of books for the Boston Globe, most recently, The King Is Always Above the People, The Ninth Hour, and New People. Sometimes I write about other things for them too, like (not) making up snow days and the reissue of the beloved All-of-a-Kind Family books.
- The first chapter of my novel, 76 Washington Ave, appeared in Embark Literary Journal.
- I wrote about the amazing response when an arsonist burned down the Islamic Center in Victoria, Texas, the same weekend the president issued the first Muslim ban, for 500 Pens.
- My open letter to the president, Sasha Obama, My Daughter, and the PARCC Test, went viral on the Huffington Post and the Washington Post's Answer Sheet education blog. Skip the comments. My follow-up, Something Is Rotten in the State of Massachusetts: An Open Letter to Governor Baker about Transparency, Accountability, and the PARCC Test, appeared on WBUR's Learning Lab and and the Answer Sheet.
- Smells Like Words is an attempt to explain anosmia, the lack of a sense of smell. Readers at The Millions called it "wonderful writing and description," "that unsettling beauty that can characterize an insight into the 'other side,'" and "absolutely spot-on."
- I used to write a column at Literary Mama about books, reading, and family called How Does Your Bookshelf Grow?
- Public Books sends me stacks of new novels so I can write long review essays on topics like recent historical fiction and MA (middle-aged) fiction, a concept I invented, which oddly has not taken off.
- I've been writing for a long time, so here are some old pieces on working mothers, the 2004 election, Sarah Palin, my husband the chef, and leaving academia (that one raised quite a ruckus, generating more comments than just about anything Inside Higher Ed had ever published back then).
I also write articles, reports, grant proposals, executive summaries, website text, and the like for non-profits, schools, and companies such as Advocates for Human Potential, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Arcus Foundation, Design Education Consultancy, Farm & Wilderness, Fiscal Strategies Group, Jobs for the Future, Nellie Mae Education Foundation, and Year Up.
In my previous life as an English professor, I wrote Time, Space, and Gender in the Nineteenth-Century British Diary (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), academic journal articles about 19th-century British diaries and fiction, encyclopedia articles, and academic book reviews.