Document Type



Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


Creative Writing

First Advisor's Name

Julie Marie Wade

First Advisor's Committee Title

Major Professor


diary, memoir, millennial, growing up, middle school, girl, woman, funny, poignant

Date of Defense



DEAR LITTLE ME: A RESPONSE TO MY FORMER SELF is a 180-page memoir in which the adult self at age twenty-three responds to the diary entries and writings of the younger version of herself. The original diary entries, which were written from 2001 to 2004, feature the typical troubles of a middle school girl: crushes, cliques, and puberty. However, the diary entries also explore darker events such as September 11, divorce, bullying, and self-image issues. When the adult “me” re-read these diaries, I felt a strong desire to respond to my former self, offering her advice and encouragement, both serious and humorous.

DEAR LITTLE ME is unique in form, as it combines diary entries and essay. In the same way that Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s ENCYCLOPEDIA OF AN ORDINARY LIFE adopts the well-known format of the encyclopedia to create familiarity for her readers, DEAR LITTLE ME stays true to the the diary format. Modeling the new prose on the original form and syntax of diary entries is intended to create pathos by appealing to readers’ sense of nostalgia for their own lost childhoods. I intend to help readers remember their challenging pre-teen years and to recognize how many of the challenges of those years are still with us as adults, albeit in different forms.



Included in

Nonfiction Commons



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Rights Statement

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