Welcome to my blog The Mental Traveler. I have finally succumbed to the suggestions, pleas, and threats to record some of my thoughts and experiences, primarily gleaned from years of travel around the world. For a long time I relied on Facebook Status Updates to suffice, but as I have assigned consistent blogging to my Professional Writing class this semester, and I never ask students to do anything I wouldn’t do, it is now a matter of integrity that I practice what I teach. Thus, my new and improved (i.e., continual) site.

Everyone reading this probably knows whatever they need to know about me, but for the sake of completeness, let me provide a brief bio. I was born Rebecca Luttrell in Frankfort, Kentucky, where I grew up, went to college, got married, and began my teaching career. I received BA, MA, and PhD degrees from the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY, in English, creative writing, and drama. I also attended Southeastern Christian College in Winchester, KY, where I met my husband, Kyle D. Briley. A UK grad in journalism, Kyle was the research director for the KY Commission on Human Rights in Louisville, KY, before being stricken with an inoperable brain tumor; we were married 13 years before he died at the young age of 35.

I taught at UK and in the KCTCS system for 15 years before relocating to Germany to teach for DoDDS and the University of Maryland on the Bitburg and Spangdahlem American Air Force Bases for the next six years. While in Germany, I traveled all over the world; I also became active in theatre, directing and writing. I left Germany to teach one term at the American University of Girne, North Cyprus, before buying a house and moving to Hawaii for nearly four years. As full-time teaching positions proved scarce in the islands, I began teaching online for Kaplan University and traveling occasionally to Klaipeda, Lithuania, to teach for LCC International University. Three years ago I accepted a full-time position as Director of the Writing Program at Oklahoma Christian University where I find myself now assigning and writing blogs.

Currently, I live in Edmond with my beloved and beautiful Birman cat of 17 years, Lt. Jay Gatsby; recently, we have been joined by a former Turkish student from Cyprus who has just completed her second MA at the University of Central Oklahoma. I have published a collection of poems, Bean Si Bones and completed a novel sequel to The Great Gatsby which I hope to publish this year. I continue to write in all genres and present academic research at conferences all over the world. My Christian faith sustains me and gives me hope for a better future.

My beliefs are strong and I am outspoken. Whether or not you agree with my views, I hope you will appreciate my posts and find something of value to take from them. I welcome your comments, but will not use this venue for arguments. Thanks for your interest!

Rebecca Luttrell Briley, Ph.D.


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