Date of Award

Spring 5-15-2015

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Creative Writing



Major Professor

Randy Bates

Second Advisor

Richard Goodman

Third Advisor

Carolyn Hembree

Fourth Advisor

Elizabeth Steeby


You Don't Have to be Good, is a nonfiction collection of prose, poetry and graphic memoir set in New Orleans, central Florida, and points in between. In this coming-of-age memoir, I recall the abrupt end of my dad's life, the 24 years of my life in which he was alive, and the years after his death—remembering him while living without him in his hometown of New Orleans. Along the way there are meditations on language, race, gender, dreams, addiction, and ecology. My family and I encounter Hurricane Katrina and Mardi Gras, and at least one shuttle launch. These are the stories I find myself telling at parties, and also those I've never voiced until now.


The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Friday, May 15, 2020