Lifestyle Fellow at Bustle

Beats: women's health, social issues and lifestyle. Columbia Journalism School grad. Tar Heel living in NYC. Bylines: amNewYork,, and

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Dear Fans of Greg Heffley: Here's How Your Favorite 'Wimpy Kid ...

What makes “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” stand out from its counterparts are the quirky, satirical jokes that make up the foundation of Greg Heffley’s diaries. As Greg describes his first day of school and how he’s able to get by without doing too much schoolwork since the students are new, we get a sketch of Greg’s gaudy-looking teacher asking him a question, to which Greg replies, “No speech English.”

Davecicirelli article

New Spin: Thumbs Up for “Fakebook” - DIY MFA : DIY MFA

What would you do if you followed updates on Facebook about a close friend who quit his job, traveled to the west and got tangled up in all sorts of mischief (including getting kidnapped by a religious cult and train hopping with a farmer’s daughter) – only to find out the whole thing was a hoax months later?

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A Chinese Perspective on Western Books: Part Two - DIY MFA : DIY ...

In part one of this article, I talked about some of their reactions toward Western romance novels and books that are known for their historical and political implications, such as “Lord of the Flies” by William Golding. In this post, we’ll take a look at the differences between the portrayal of fantasy and magic in literature from both cultures.

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#5onFri - Medical Narratives: Books for the Medical Mind - DIY MFA ...

There are many medical narratives that put medicine into a more human perspective and add social context to mental health issues that aren’t being talked about.

Dansemacabre article

New Spin: “Danse Macabre” and How to Make History Come Alive

When you combine 19th century Parisian history, classical music and dancing skeletons, what do you get? Saint-Saëns’s Danse Macabre, a spooky children’s picture book about how French composer Camille Saint-Saëns became inspired to create the orchestral piece “Danse Macabre,” or “dance of death,” after a visit to an underground cemetery.

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A Chinese Perspective on Western Books: Part One

Chinese and Western cultures are based on very distinct belief systems and societal values (not to mention, the difference in the span of their respective histories is thousands of years apart). A concept like, say, individualism conjures up a range of emotions – or no emotions at all – depending on who you’re talking to. These differences, consequentially, are often reflected in their literature, and readers’ interpretations of books vary.

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New Spin: The Picture Book Behind “What Does the Fox Say?” - DIY ...

What started out as a comedic song for “Tonight with Ylvis,” the Norwegian television show hosted by brothers Vegard and Bård Ylvisåker, became an internet sensation as the response to “What Does the Fox Say?” exploded on YouTube almost instantly. But fewer people know that just weeks before “The Fox” music video was released in September 2013, the Ylvis brothers approached Norwegian illustrator Svein Nyhus with plans to convert the song lyrics into a children’s picture book.

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Redefining Teen Romance: On Writing Sex, Love and Emotions ...

Oh, the throes and woes of adolescent love. The fact that it’s such a relatable experience is one of the reasons why teen romance is one most popular fiction categories in the book industry. On March 22, I listened to five New York Times bestselling YA authors speak at a NYC Teen Author Festival panel about the importance of authenticity and “stripping away layers” – as panelist Lauren Myracle put it – when writing about teenagers in love.

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Devious Storytelling: Celebrating the Release of “Battle Bunny” - DIY ...

Imagine taking a sweet picture book about cats and then altering it completely – crossing out and penciling in new text, drawing over the illustrations and scribbling laser beams that shoot out from the cat’s eyes with a permanent marker.

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Writing Outside Your Comfort Zone - DIY MFA : DIY MFA

When people meet me for the first time, they usually find out within the first ten minutes that I love to write. The question that proceeds right after is, “What do you write?” At that point, I’m stumped.

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New Spin: The Graphic Novel of “Miss Peregrine” - DIY MFA : DIY MFA

Supernatural, eerie, weird. These are some of the words readers have used to describe Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Quirk Books), a fiction novel based on antique photographs of children that author Ransom Riggs had collected.

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Creative Writing Lessons from a Reporter - DIY MFA : DIY MFA

I’m a journalist by day and a creative writer by night. This double life started in my sophomore year of college, when I enrolled in two classes: Introduction to Fiction and News Writing. Every week, I would spend my mornings and afternoons typing up news articles using the inverted pyramid...