Hurricane Wilma: A Love Story

Document Type



Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor's Name

Lynne Barrett

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Les Standiford

Third Advisor's Name

Vernon Dickson


Hurricane, Journalism, Reporter, Real Estate, Home

Date of Defense



Hurricane Wilma: A Love Story is a coming-of-age memoir about the two years the narrator spent rebuilding his hurricane-damaged condo in Miami Beach in order to provide a home for the woman he would eventually marry. The torturous rebuilding process forced the narrator to confront his deepest insecurities, to overcome a lifelong mother dependency and to assume adult responsibility. He learns to accept and even love the imperfections and particularities of his apartment, just as he does those of his girlfriend. The writing style aspires to the elegance of Tobias Wolff’s This Boy’s Life, the integrity of William Finnegan’s Crossing the Line, the irreverence of Carl Hiaasen’s Basket Case and the insight of Calvin Trillin’s Remembering Denny. The memoir is a tale of growing up despite oneself, of a young journalist who comes to learn, through a series of missteps and misadventures, the true meaning of home.

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