Your Dickens Club: Meet the Dickensians

Wherein your hosts, authors, and contributors–your Crummles-like “core Company”–introduce themselves; including those in our member list who post or comment regularly, and who said “Barkis is willin’!” to our request for a short biography.

Note: This is a work-in-progress! Email Rach if you’d say “Barkis is willin'” to be featured here. These are in alphabetical order by first name.

For our complete member list, click here.

Your hosts, Rach and Boze, warmly welcome you to the Club of marvelous Dickensians!

Your Dickens Club Hosts, Authors, & Contributors

Adaptation Stationmaster

The Adaptation Stationmaster is very grateful to his university for letting him do his thesis on the male protagonists of Charles Dickens even though none of the literature he’d analyzed for his English degree was written by Dickens. The Adaptation Stationmaster lives in rural North Dakota. He enjoys reading, watching movies and blogging about the intersection between them. His top three Dickens books are The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, A Christmas Carol in Prose, and Great Expectations.


Boze Herrington is a mystery and middle-grade novelist who revels in detail and rejoices in hope. His work has been featured in The Atlantic, The Guardian, Plough, Nerdist, Lit Hub, and on The Home of Agatha Christie. He tweets about books and faith @SketchesbyBoze. He thinks The Pickwick Papers is just about the best book ever.


I am a proud card carrying Dickensian. While I hold a degree in English (Victorian) Literature, I have a particular passion for Dickens criticism and biography which is a never ending source of varied content and extreme satisfaction. My knowledge of Dickens is primarily self-taught and I have come to love, in particular, Little Dorrit which I find to be so rich and so hopeful, as is my favorite Dickens character Miss Tox of Dombey & Son. I live in the Midwest with my husband and near my four sons and two daughters-in-law. I love ice hockey, my Peloton bike, my plants, and, most recently, my Dickens Club family (who also provide a never ending source of varied content and extreme satisfaction!).


I’m a reclusive writer in the PNW, working on a series of speculative fiction novels with Arthurian themes. In the Dickensian vein, Sydney Carton was one of my first literary crushes and I have watched the Alistair Sim A Christmas Carol every Christmas Eve since I was about 9 or 10 years old–a tradition I’ve successfully passed down to my kids. Otherwise, my favorite “film” adaptation is (of course) the RSC Nicholas Nickleby while my favorite novel is most probably Bleak House.   

Among other notable achievements, I firmly believe Boz concocted three of the best (worst) marriage proposals in literary history: two by Mr Guppy; and (the #1 best/worst of all time) Headcase’s, I mean Headstone’s, proposal to Lizzie Hexam in Our Mutual Friend. (In this august fellowship of best-worst marriage proposal writers our beloved Jane Austen must run a close second, with delicious examples from Mr Darcy and Mr Collins, just in Pride and Prejudice. But I digress. As usual.


I, Daniel M., am an avid Inimitable.  Dickens has the rare capacity to move the human heart—to laughter, joy, sadness, a sense of tragic loss.  I continuously marvel at his astonishing capacity to traverse the terrain of the human heart.

Sam Weller would have to qualify as my single favorite character that Dickens created.  Sam’s loyalty, cleverness, willingness to suffer the fate of those he loves, and completely delightful usages dazzle and captivate me.


I’ve been an avid reader all my life but have only recently begun exploring the classics.  I began with Homer, then moved on to Cervantes, then jumped to the 19th century, reading Austen and the Bronte sisters.  I began reading Dickens, starting with Nicholas Nickleby – I enjoyed it so much I decided to read all his works in chronological order.  As I was reading Martin Chuzzlewit, I discovered the Dickens Club – now I am looking forward to reading the rest of the books together!


Adoring serial reader of (and weeper over) the marvels that are Dicken’s London novels – Bleak House, Our Mutual Friend, Little Dorrit. Regularly re-read and cry over these (& re-watch the adaptations, esp BBC Bleak House & Christine Edzard’s Little Dorrit & Armando Iannucci’s David Copperfield, O.M.G. how many flower emojis). 


Long ago I was an English major and have remained so at heart, even though my work-life took me off in another direction.  Somehow, in all my reading, I never found myself being drawn to Dickens.  However, I have a friend who had taken a Dickens class in college and became a lifelong fan as a result.  So finally, after an evening that included his fond memories of that class and his years of reading Dickens, I decided it was time to try Dickens in earnest.  I started with his first novel, wondering how far I would get.  I read Pickwick Papers and to my delight, I laughed, I cried (from laughing so hard) and just had the best time reading it.  Then Oliver Twist – such a familiar story but I enjoyed it far more than I expected.  Then I fell in love with Nicholas Nickleby – the book itself and then the RSC theatrical version.  Since then, I’ve read Curiosity Shop and Barnaby Rudge, enjoying each of them so much.  I have obligations right now that force me to pause for a time, but I’ve loved being a part of this Dickens Club and I’m hoping to drop in now and then to catch up on everyone’s lovely, insightful thoughts on all things Dickens.

Deacon Matthew

Deacon Matthew Knight is a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Portland, currently finishing his final year of theology studies at St. Patrick’s Seminary and University and looking forward to ordination as a priest this summer. He is the host of In Your Embrace, a podcast about Christian life, faith, liturgy, literature, and a whole lot more. In addition to Dickens, he loves Shakespeare, Tolkien, Hopkins and the English romantics, philosophy, classical guitar, Gregorian chant and Renaissance music, coffee and hiking in the mountains. For more on all of the above, visit


Rachel M. (pen name: Sydney Wren) is a scribbler, seamstress, & Dickens Fellowship member who fell in love with Dickens as a teenager, reading The Pickwick Papers & Dombey & Son. (It’s in large part the fault of our member Lenny–the best teacher ever!) Her heroes include Sydney Carton, Sam Weller, & Miss Jenny Wren. She thinks the filmed RSC Nicholas Nickleby is far more crucial to take to a desert island than Thomas’ Guide to Practical Shipbuilding. Her first novel WIP, a modern-gothic “love letter to Dickens,” is represented by Maura Phelan of Green Light Literary.