My name is Elizabeth Thomas. I am from New Jersey and I like cats. I am an English (double track) and Religious Studies (honors) major with a minor in Women's Studies. I'm also writing a thesis on the use of social media by major monotheistic religious groups, specifically Roman Catholics.

Needless to say, I don't have a lot of spare time.

This is what I look like (Photo by Jessica Danyi):

Liz knitting instagram.jpg

These are things that I like:
  • vegetarian burritos
  • the color blue
  • Feminist liberation theology (Mary Daly!)
  • fiestaware (I have service for twenty)
  • Modernist Poetry (If white people had spirit animals, Virginia Woolf would be my spirit animal)
  • Angels in America (I'm obsessed. I keep rereading it)
  • Greek Theater (Euripides especially)
  • Knitting (as you can see in the photo above)
  • Gardening (if you have 20 spare minutes, i can list all of the things that I'm growing this year)
  • fishnet stockings (I'm even wearing them under my wedding dress!)
  • the smell of lavender (but not really the color)

First Editing Project:

I didn't quite know what I wanted to say when I started thinking about my "College Life at IUP" Project. As a transfer (and as an introvert), I don't always necessarily feel connected to college life here, and since I'm older than most of the student body, I didn't quite know how to write about my experiences here, or if I'd have anything interesting to add. I ended up writing about what brought me to IUP and overcoming my introversion, which I think was effective. Josh Weston and Joe Canton gave me some additional advice on how to make my piece more vivid and more detailed.

While I enjoyed writing my piece, I enjoyed editing my colleagues pieces a lot more. I find correcting other peoples work and giving them suggestions incredibly satisfying, and I think that it is something that I do well.

Scribus Project

I made a poster for the upcoming Radical Reads Books Swap for the Bluestocking Society. We needed a poster, so I figured I would combine obligations and make this both for the club and for the class. I wanted it to look handmade in the style of other Anarchist Bookfair posters while still using the technology required for the project, which created an interesting challenge. I originally planned to actually use typewriters and scanners to make the piece more "authentic", but decided it would better test my abilities to only use the computer program to do everything, and I think that I was successful in doing so.

Final Project

Project Proposal

4/23/21013 - Update

So I've decided to go in another direction. Don't get me wrong, I still love my zine idea and plan on finishing it this summer, but I've realized that I was spending far too much of my energy on content creation and leaving layout as an afterthought. Without good layout, the content that I've been working so hard to create will fall flat. I think that taking on a project that I am so overwhelmingly passionate was a mistake because of the deadlines and constrictions that come with classwork.

This semester my fiance and I are being profiled by a journalism student who is interested in the local bicycle community, specifically the needs of women cyclists. During a meeting we were having last week, my fiance brought up the PA Bicycle Drivers Manual which is long and written in a way that is so complicated and wordy that it renders it essentially useless and is in desperate need of improvement. So, I've decided to take on the PA Bicycle Drivers Manual and try to make it more assessable, especially for commuters. My final plan is to use Scribus to create a webpage/blog as well as a bound paper document that the Indiana Bicycle Coalition could distribute.


Today Josh Weston and I editing and brainstormed about each others projects. He is working on a tutorial for Magic the Gathering that is less commercial and and glossy than ones that are licensed by the game. He hopes that his tutorial will be more user friendly and assessable for users than the current alternatives. I think his ideas are good, and am going to line edit his content when he gets a little more done. He also gave me some thoughts on my project since its still in his early stages. Today, I'm going to print out the Manual and start striking through parts that are absolutely redundant and useless which he'll look over. I'm also going to make an outline of the sections that I want to divide the manual in to and create a Scribus document that I will flesh out with more content.


So today, I've started working on layout and created an outline for the categories/chapters that I want to arrange the information in. I also have developed a Style Sheet which might become more detailed as I go along, and wrote a Preface which details my motivation for creating this project and what my goal was in making changes. Below are links to the Preface, Outline, and Style Sheet


So, I've started to edit and reformat the document and I'm about three quarters of the way through. I should have a finished product on tuesday just waiting to be edited. Also, I need to make an updated style sheet, because the fonts that I thought would work look awful. Since I'm documenting my process though, I'm going to leave up what I had before and just add the revised one below.

Also, here is the raw text of the Manual. All 29 single spaced pages of it. Fun.
In editing it, I'm surprised at how many egregious spelling and grammar issues I keep finding. You'd think that an official state manual would have sharper copy editors.


So the big day is here! I finished by the skin of my teeth, but it's all done. I'm handing it in today as a stapled packet which is how the original manual is distributed. I talked to the people at Staples about spiral binding it, but they thought that it was too short, and it would just look weird, so I just stapled it like the original copy was. Hopefully that won't be a big deal.

For your perusal:


Looking back on everything that I've done this semester I'm impressed. I still really like the poster that I made early in the semester for the Radical Reads Book Swap and I'm equally proud of my Manual. I think that the most important thing this class has given me, rather unexpectedly, is a lot of good things to think about careerwise. This summer I am planning on setting up a more polished resume, a website with a portfolio of work that I've done that really showcase the different facets of my abilities within English Studies. As someone who was reluctant to take this class thinking that it would be dry and impractical, I'm glad that I put as much effort in to it as I did, because what I've gotten out of it has been spectacular.