Date of Award

Spring 5-2017

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Randy Bates

Second Advisor

Dan Doll

Third Advisor

Robert Shenk


Sea Stories is a collection of creative nonfiction essays centered around the growth of a young woman through her experiences with water and ships. The pieces trace the origins of the narrator's tie to water from a childhood involving boating with her dad to sailing a brigantine across the Pacific Ocean and then a six-year career as an officer in the U.S. Coast Guard. The narrator's relationship with her father, predominantly viewed through their shared intimacy with water, is a base theme for the whole collection. Other themes explored in individual essays include reckoning expectations with reality, explorations of the self in and against a group, gender dynamics in military service, and the influence of fiction on life. Sea Stories shows that what we think we know, what we may have only imagined, and on the water, that self-constructed reality can be a dangerous thing.


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Nonfiction Commons