Publication Date


Type of Culminating Activity


Degree Title

Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing



Major Advisor

Brady Udall

Second Advisor

Anthony Doerr

Third Advisor

Steven Olsen-Smith


The Next Steps are Only Breathing is a novel set in Central Idaho and Nevada. The work centers around Candy Bear, a lot lizard, or truck stop prostitute. The novel opens with Candy Bear at rock bottom, and subsequent chapters explore her life story, a story of family, home, and extreme loss, paralleled with her living within and rising from the tragic circumstances in which she finds herself trapped. A note on the figures. These are part of an ongoing collaborative project, and will include illustrations. I have been using stock images from the web as place holders, these have been removed to avoid any issues of copyright.