Here are some of my more recent essays. Please feel free to email me for a PDF of the complete piece.

* “Does Authentic Mexican Food Exist,” an essay about identity and authenticity as told through 200-year-old recipes at the Mexican Cookbook Collection at the University of Texas-San Antonio, BBC Travel, February 1, 2021

* “Power Moves,” Travel + Leisure August 2020, an essay on Mexican ballet folklorico and identity that accompanies a photo series by the French photographer Delphine Blast.

* “The Border in Blue,” Texas Journey Magazine, The Borderlands Issue, May/June 2020, an essay about sky-gazing in the borderlands

* The 2019 Meridel Le Sueur Essay, Thy Kingdom Come, Water~Stone Review, Fall 2019, a lyric essay braiding chemotherapy treatments with New York City on 9/11, Beijing in 1997 and 2015, and the pyramids of Chichen Itza to contemplate the rise and fall of empire

* The Saga Continues, AirBnBmag, Winter 2018, an exploration of the rich literary heritage of Iceland–and how social media and tourism are its greatest threats

* Spirit Animal, Orion Magazine, Volume 36/Winter 2017, a meditation on grandmothers, loyalty, and owls

* The Disciplined Utopia, The Believer, August/September 2017, a month with the renown classical Indian dance troupe Nrityagram, at their village near Bangalore, India

* Chiefing in Cherokee: Commodifying a Culture to Save It, Virginia Quarterly Review, Fall 2016, a glimpse into the century-old tradition of “chiefing,” or busking, in Cherokee, North Carolina. Includes photography by Stacy Kranitz.


* Art Against The Wall, Oxford American, Spring 2015: a meditation about artists’ response to the U.S./Mexico border wall. Includes artwork by Susan Harbage Page, Stefan Falke, Mark Clark, and Rigoberto A. Gonzalez, among others


* Three Nations Crossing, Witness, Winter 2014: a dispatch about the border situation at the Mohawk Nation of Akwesasne, which straddles the U.S./Canada borderline as well as the Ontario/Quebec borderline


* Code 500, Oxford American, Fall 2013: a journey into the South Texas desert to recover the remains of a three-day gone border-crosser


* Life on Refinery Row, Earth Island Journal, Summer 2012: an investigative report on three families who live along Refinery Row, a 15-mile stretch of petrochemical refineries in Corpus Christi, Texas

* The Torture of Solitary Confinement, The Wilson Quarterly, Spring 2012: an investigative look at solitary confinement, including the 40-year anniversary of the imprisonment of the Angola 3, two elderly Black Panthers doing far too much time in Louisiana

* A Sort of Homecoming, The Florida Review, Winter 2011: a creative essay about coming to terms with the meaning of home, during a silent retreat on a ranch in deep South Texas

* The Michelangelo of New Mexico, The Believer, November/December 2011: a celebration of Frederico Vigil, a master frescoist who recently completed his life’s work: a 4,000 square foot fresco detailing 3,000 years of Latino history


Other Works

Writing On the Edge, “Teaching Under Threat,” Spring 2012

Dallas Morning News, “South Texas Rebel,” 12 September 2010

Poets & Writers, “Confessions of an Author Nomad,” November/December 2009

World Pulse Magazine, “Six Places Every Woman Should Go,” Winter/Spring 2009 – “Tears from Turkey,” Winter 2004

Perceptive Travel Magazine“Officially a Woman in Mexico,” November 2008

Texas Monthly Magazine“Bad Mexican,” August 2008

World Literature Today, “Malaleche, Spoiled Milk,” May 2008

Bitch Magazine, “Lessons From The Bloc,” Winter 2005

The Odyssey: US Trek, Stephanie’s Archive

Latina Magazine

  • “Identity Trek: Becoming Latina,” December 2001, p. 64.
  • “Mosaic Marriages,” November 1999, p. 74.
  • “Wanderlust: After Traveling Half the World in Search of Myself, I Realize That, in the End, the Journey Is All That Matters,” September 1999, p. 120.

New York Times

  • “Firing on Music Videos With a Satiric Pop Gun,” Wednesday, August 6, 1997.
  • “Lost Souls and Others, All on the Bus,” Monday, July 21, 1997.
  • “Finishing Touch For Creatures of the Night,” Sunday, July 20, 1997.
  • “Proof Man’s Belly Has a Higher Purpose Than Beer: Call It Oriental Dancing, Please. It’s Not Just for Sheherazade, and Harem Oglers Need Not Apply,” Sunday, July 13, 1997.
  • “Under Pickford’s Curls, a Determined Mind,” Monday, July 7, 1997.
  • “Immigrant, Teacher and Now Filmmaker,” Monday, June 30, 1997.

The Washington Post

  • “Top Bun: In Fast-Food World, Quickness Counts,” Monday, September 11, 1995.
  • “Campus Crusaders,” Sunday, September 3, 1995.
  • ‘Mortal Kombat’s’ Bloodless Coup: Kids Say Hit Martial-Arts Film Lacks Video Game’s Gory Details,” Monday, August 28, 1995
  • “Jerry’s Grateful Fans Keep the Love Alive,” Thursday, August 10, 1995.
  • “Hitting the Ground Rolling: For Team Geo, Life’s a Real Road Show,” Monday, July 17, 1995.
  • “Undying Devotion: Cemeteries Turn Down Celebrities Whose Fans Won’t Let Them Rest in Peace,” Saturday, July 15, 1995.
  • “They’ve Found Their Calling; The Selling Points of Being a Telemarketer,” Tuesday, July 11, 1995.
  • “The Pickett Family Roundup; Cowboy’s Descendants Gather To Remember Trailblazing Kin,” Monday, July 03, 1995.
  • “The Long March to Recognition,” Thursday, June 22, 1995.
  • “A Grab Bag Of Geniuses: MacArthur Winners Include Humanitarian Missing in Chechnya,” Tuesday, June 13, 1995.
  • “Sawed and Not Heard: Women Working as Magicians? Now That’s a Real Trick,” Monday, June 12, 1995.

Seattle Post-Intelligencer, “First Vote on a President Since Soviet Collapse in 1991,” June 11, 1996, A1.

Associated Press, “Case Workers Lament Conditions For Some Children in Texas,” San Antonio Express-News, Monday, March 15, 1999.