Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

John C. McCown

Second Advisor

Harrison Candelaria Fletcher

Third Advisor

Elizabeth Canfield


After the Fire is a novel exploring a mother and daughter as they are faced with shifts in socioeconomic status and cultures in 1970s Los Angeles. Haunted by the mysterious death of her sister and her father’s abandonment the daughter tries to fit herself into her changing world by giving up her own aspirations to seek replacements for what she lost. The mother is catapulted into financial survival as she uncovers the secrets of her missing husband’s past and comes to terms with the role she played in a life that was a lie. Use Your Words is a collection of linked creative non-fiction essays that examines how things said, and not said, create belief systems and identities, and explores the roles we take on when we speak up and when we stay silent.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Available for download on Sunday, March 24, 2216

Included in

Fiction Commons