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Though originally from South Texas, I recently relocated to Austin to pursue a Ph.D. in English. My areas of specialization are Medieval and Renaissance British literature. Prior to this, I received a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Texas State University-San Marcos and, while pursuing my M.F.A., lived in San Antonio. As I continue my graduate studies and teach colege-level courses, I am excited to share my love of the written word with students who want to grow as writers and readers. While the majority of my tutoring and teaching experience has taken place within a college writing center or classroom setting, I would be well-suited to work with college-bound high school students preparing for AP English exams and college application essays. I also have extensive experience working with students who have developmental and remedial educational needs and, additionally, have experience tutoring students for whom English is a second language. Where literature is concerned, aside from being well-versed in early British literature, I also have abiding interests in African-American literature, Mexican-American literature, Native-American literature, and poetry in particular across time. My undergraduate and master's degrees required me to read far and wide within the American and British literary traditions, however, and I have had great success working with students who struggle with literary analysis.

I believe that everyone is capable of critical thought and creative expression regardless of her or his educational background or learning level. Everyone has a voice that deserves to be heard and a story that deserves to be told. As a tutor, my primary goal is to uncover and foster these things in my students because I believe that you cannot use the voice that’s uniquely yours until you first believe that you have one. And while I will put on my teacher hat when the occasion calls for it, I am first and foremost a tireless cheerleader and a relentless believer in my students. I strive to empower my students by cultivating their self-confidence and encouraging them to take intellectual and creative risks, all of which are qualities that extend far beyond the confines of an English class.

Because I am a writer—specifically, a poet—many of my interests and hobbies revolve around language and literature. I am an avid reader of everything from Greco-Roman mythology to Contemporary American Poetry to Tolkein’s The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. Other interests include foreign languages in general and the Spanish language in particular, the American Southwest, classical music and music in general (I sing and play the clarinet, oboe, recorder, and ocarina), the visual arts, Star Wars and Star Trek, and the Middle Ages. I love being outdoors and am an avid hiker and backpacker. I also love to travel and have wandered across the United States, Mexico, Peru, India, and England. I hope to return to India one day and dream of going to Thailand and Tibet. My work schedule keeps me fairly busy and my cats Linus and Fergus keep me perpetually on my toes, but in my spare time, I enjoy practicing yoga, discovering the next best place to eat that nobody has ever heard of, combing through the shelves at Halfprice Books, and exploring the city of Austin.

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John’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Davidson College - Bachelor in Arts, English

Graduate Degree: Texas State University-San Marcos - Master of Fine Arts, Creative Writing (Poetry)


Creative Writing, Reading, Coffee, Mythology and Folklore, Comparative Religion, Hiking/Backpacking, Yoga, Meditation, World Travel

Tutoring Subjects

Advanced Placement Prep

American Literature

Ancient and Medieval Heritage

British Literature

College English

College Essays

College Level American Literature

Comparative Literature

Creative Writing


English Grammar and Syntax

Essay Editing

Expository Writing

Graduate Test Prep

GRE Analytical Writing

GRE Subject Test in Literature in English

GRE Subject Tests

GRE Verbal

High School English

High School Level American Literature


Medieval Literature


Social Studies

Test Prep


World Literature


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