Colorado Springs, Colorado
Major in English Literature, Minors in Religious Studies and Spanish
Tell us about a memorable class, experience, professor, or assignment.
Actually, an assignment I'm completing now is proving to be memorable. For Professor Monica Berlin's poetry workshop, we are supposed to collaborate with another student, writing poems back and forth and eventually making our own chapbook. Solitude seems so essential for the writer, but the writing evolves in an unexpected way when it becomes communal.
What campus jobs have you had while at Knox?
I've been lucky to find two interesting jobs here at Knox. I work as a student assistant to the editors of Knox Magazine, our alumni publication. I get assigned some very interesting projects, like writing a profile of Dorothea Tanning '32, who grew up in Galesburg, dropped out of Knox to move to Chicago, and eventually became renowned for her paintings. I also work as a research assistant to Professor Lance Factor. We're seeing what we can dredge up from the Seymour Library archives, which means I'm reading a lot of personal documents -- letters, journals, and the like.
Your play, The Porcelain Vase, is available from Samuel French. How did it get published?
When I was writing The Porcelain Vase, I was thinking a lot about conservatism -- religious, political, personal -- the way it always seems to be a form of nostalgia. I wanted to explore that on stage, so the play follows a widower as he sells his possessions with the help of his son. The two clash over how they recreate and preserve their shared past. I submitted the play to the Educational Theatre Association's annual Thespian Playworks competition, and my script became a finalist. A few people from Samuel French, Inc. were at a staged reading of the play during the 2010 International Thespian Festival. After the performance, they approached me and offered to publish my play along with the other Playworks finalists. The entire experience allowed me to work with some very wise directors and dramaturges.
Listen to Christopher's recurring This Is Where We Live podcast about the sounds we hear around Galesburg and the Knox campus