A Little Bit of Wonder is where I journal about the somewhat roundabout way that I have been working to establish a career and a strong sense of self--I spend a lot of time thinking and writing about "direction" and "identity." I have a Master's Degree in Literature, but I'm no longer working as an English Professor; I'm starting the next step in my life as I work to establish a career as a writer in the non-profit sector.

At my companion blog, Little Wonder's Recommended Reading, you will find reviews for both books and other blogs that I enjoy. The two blogs are inter-linked, so you can access my reviews and reading challenges from the sidebar on the left.

About Little Wonder

Who is Little Wonder?

Lauren Schultz is currently a professional writer and communications associate at a non-profit organization in the New York City metro area; she has previously worked as a professor of composition and literature at colleges in both Maryland and New York.  She has a Master’s Degree in Literature from American University in Washington D.C., and wrote her Thesis on Young Adult Fantasy Literature and Media, covering everything from Tuck Everlasting to Harry Potter.  She has given presentations at the International Children’s Literature Association Conference and The Bi-Annual International Slayage/Whedonverse Conference.  She has published a book chapter that compares Nancy Drew to Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and sits on the Editorial Board for Watcher Junior.  Besides books already mentioned, her YA fantasy favorites include C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia and Philip Pullman’s The Golden Compass Trilogy.  Being a book geek, though, she loves all kinds of Literature from around the globe; other favorites include Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse, Mario Vargas Llosa's The Bad Girl, Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children and The Ground Beneath Her Feet, Jonathan Safran Foer's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and Markus Zusak's The Book Thief.

Email: littlelaurenalise@gmail.com
Follow her on Twitter: @SLaurenAlise

What is The Wonder Blog All About?

When I started this blog, my plan was to earn a Ph.D. in English, Literature, or possibly Film. I love stories of all kinds, so my goal was to have an Important University Career teaching Literature and Cinema. Unfortunately, a lot of geeks like me think that would be a fun profession, so I am competing with a herd of determined, well-qualified people. (Who wouldn't want to be paid to read books or watch movies that they love?) And so although I have a Master's Degree and teach at a community college, it's doesn’t look like I'll be getting a Ph.D. any time soon, which means that I won't be able to get a full-time job as an all important Professor of Literature.

I love teaching composition, yet I can’t find full-time work doing that either—but that’s a much longer, more boring story about the economy and university restructuring. The important thing is that now I’ve decided to try a different path; after all, I may want to be a professor, but I also need to make money to eat and buy shoes. (I have a recent crush on Sketchers, but I’m waiting to see if the relationship will last.) Most importantly, I need cash for books--I have a serious addiction to Amazon.  So I am trying to make a much-needed change to make sure that I can pay the bills, but looking for a new job feels a little bit like looking for a new identity, making me wonder about where I am headed in life and even question who I am at times.  I probably shouldn't feel like so much of "who I am" is tied to my profession--but up until this point, I've been planning on having a profession, not just a job.  I've been devoted to my study of literature and pedagogy (the art of teaching); I've sacrificed a good portion of my sanity to earn my Master's Degree (see my many blog posts about graduate school, from 2008).
Looking for a fresh start after graduate school, my husband and I moved to New York in 2010.  Now I’m pursing a career in publishing, public relations or social services/child welfare, and eventually I might get certified to teach high school English. I'm trying to re-imagine this job search as an exciting journey (not a failure to meet my original goal), although I’m not feeling adventurous enough to apply to any auto-body shops.  Through everything, I'm also trying to regain a sense of wonder about the interesting and beautiful things in my life.  Read more about my life as a graduate student and my exploits as a disoriented but career-hopeful job seeker in my journal-blog, "A Little Bit of Wonder" (link on the sidebar).

For more about the books I love, read my "Reading Recommendations Blog" (link on the sidebar) and follow me on Twitter @SLaurenAlise, where I try mostly to tweet about books and media.
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