I am a Lecturer in American literature and co-director of the Centre for New and international Writing at the University of Liverpool. My research currently focuses primarily on 20th and 21st century American literature, with a particular focus on form and structure in the contemporary American novel and the legacies of postmodernism. I also have research interests in the relationship between literature and cinema, literature and popular music, and the relationship between comics/graphic novels and mental health. I have recently started work on a long-term research project about the figure of the ghost in contemporary American literature. I lead the research/public engagement and impact project Illustrating Futures, a collaboration with Comics Youth CIC and Tate Liverpool, which addresses the use of comics and graphic novels in the treatment of mental health issues in children and young people.
I have written and researched extensively on the writer David Foster Wallace. I am author of David Foster Wallace: Fiction and Form (2016) and editor of Consider David Foster Wallace: Critical Essays (2010), and essays have also recently appeared in David Foster Wallace: Critical Insights (2015) and The Cambridge Companion to David Foster Wallace (2018). In 2013-14 I was the recipient of an Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship at the Harry Ransom Centre, University of Texas at Austin, for the purposes of researching Wallace's archive.
My research has also appeared in, among other publications, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Critical Engagements and Orbit. I have been invited to speak about my research at a number of institutions including New York University, The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Ca' Foscari University of Venice, Trinity College Dublin, University of York and University of Birmingham. I recently led the successful bid for the University of Liverpool to host the British Association of American Studies conference (BAAS) in 2020. I would be happy to receive applications for PhD supervision in any of the above areas.
- Keynote Speaker, OzWallace Conference, Melbourne, Australia (Keynote Speech, RMIT University 2017)
- Invitation for week-long residency at Tate Exchange, 'Illustrating Futures' collaboration (Invitation to Speak, Tate Liverpool 2017)
- Invited Speaker, 'What We Talk About When We Talk About David Foster Wallace: Intertexts, Cinema, Form', Research Panel (Invitation to Speak, Universita Ca' Foscari Venezia, Venice, Italy 2017)
- School of the Arts Research Development and Impact Fund Award for 'Illustrating Futures' collaboration (University of Liverpool 2017)
- Invited Speaker, NYU Creative Writing Program Reading Series, Lillian Vernon House (Invitation to Speak, New York University 2017)
- Santander Travel Grant (Santander 2017)
- Knowledge Exchange Voucher, Illustrating Futures collaboration (University of Liverpool 2017)
- Keynote Speaker: "Writing Revolutions and Revolutionary Writing" Conference (Keynote Speech, University of Birmingham 2015)
- 2013-14 Harry Ransom Centre Research Fellowship in the Humanities (Andrew W. Mellon Foundation) (Competitive Fellowship, University of Texas at Austin 2013)
- School of the Arts Research Development Initiative Fund Award (University of Liverpool 2012)
- British Association of American Studies Research Travel Grant (British Association of American Studies 2011)
- Invited Speaker, Seminar on Contemporary American Fiction (Invitation to Speak, Trinity College, Dublin 2010)
- Co-Director, Centre for New and International Writing
- Director, Modern and Contemporary MA
- Peer Mentor Co-ordinator, Department of English
- Academic Advisor Co-ordinator, Department of English