Document Type



Master of Fine Arts


Creative Writing

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

John Dalton


Shane Seely

Tola Rotimi Abraham


The ten stories in this collection draw inspiration from folklore and fairytale to explore the inherently surreal experience of being a woman. A mother reckons with her family’s disconnect as hungry wolves lurk outside their vacation home. The wife of a grown-up Hansel from Grimms’ classic tale “Hansel and Gretel” is haunted by the tale’s witch. A pregnant woman chases after an animate sculpture. A young girl finds hope in the fairytale magic of the juniper tree in her backyard while her older sister come to terms with the finality of death. All the women in an entire town transform into trees. Following in the tradition of feminist fabulist authors like Carmen Maria Machado, Kelly Link, Helen Phillips, and Helen Oyeyemi, these stories feature mostly women characters who are attempting to navigate the often-troubling realities of their lives: relational and domestic expectations, guilt, violence, and heartbreak. Where these stories depart from tradition, though, is in the environmental focus of the language, which also emphasizes humans’ relationship with the natural world.

Available for download on Saturday, May 04, 2222

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