Andrea_Judy Teufel

(Image by Judy Teufel)

I live in a houseboat on a river in Oregon. It’s a floating home, permanently moored, not something that put-puts around. Otters, beavers, and muskrats are my neighbors, along with a variety of birds, including eagles, hawks, and herons. Other houseboats are moored here too, so I also have human neighbors. For the most part, houseboat people are kind, maybe a wee bit eccentric, and generous. They keep to themselves unless you’re in trouble (like, say, a log stuck under your houseboat for many years is one day forced free by a strong current and thrusts itself up through your deck, causing alarm and wreckage; this actually happened to me recently). Then they come immediately to your aid.

We all love the quiet we find here on the river and in the nearby forest.

I’m a writer and editor. (See Editing Services.) I taught writing workshops and classes in and around Portland for many years.

Bio: Published a book of fiction, The Riverhouse Stories. Short stories, poems, and essays have appeared in various literary quarterlies, magazines, and newspapers.

If you’re interested, you can find some of my work online. Garrison Keillor read “Emily Dickinson’s To-Do List” on his radio program, The Writer’s Almanac, and that poem has appeared in a few anthologies, most recently in Visiting Emily: Poems Inspired by the Life and Work of Emily Dickinson, edited by Sheila Coghill and Thom Tammaro, published by the University of Iowa Press. It will also appear in the upcoming 10th edition of Literature and the Writing Process (Pearson). The only other poetry online is in YB Poetry, the Animal Issue (Issue 5).

A short story is published here in the online journal Melusine. Another short story, “Choose Your Partner,” was published in the Winter 2011 issue of J Journal: New Writing on Justice and was nominated for a Pushcart. You can read an excerpt here. An essay, “The Full Brontë,” was published in A Woman’s Europe, a collection of essays by women travelers, published by Travelers’ Tales.

Recipient of an Oregon Arts Commission Individual Artist’s Fellowship (for fiction) and a fellowship from the Oregon Institute of Literary Arts (for nonfiction). Co-writer and co-director for a video program on disability titled “Looking Up,” which won a first place award at the John Muir Medical Film Festival and was a finalist at the American Film Festival. Co-writer for The Peasant and the Priest, a documentary about the effects of globalization on Tuscany (directed by Esther Podemski, 2011).

22 Responses to “About Me”

  1. Bill Green Says:

    Hi Andrea, I heard Garrison Keillor read your Emily Dickenson poem the other day. It shocked me into realizing how long it has been since Lee and I have talked to you. I thought your poem was the most succinct summary of a life that I ever heard. Lee and I are doing well. We would love to hear from you. Bill (and Lee)Green.


  2. Margaret Says:

    Hi Andrea- just discovered your wonderful blog and am looking forward to spending more time reading both here (I too have an aging mother) and elsewhere.


  3. Margaret Says:

    PS- I stopped by to read the accordion piece you mentioned in a comment you left on my blog, but haven’t found it yet. Could you please add a search button? It would be very helpful to your readers!


  4. Hi Andrea, I recently browsing through an old copy of The Reader’s Digest when I happened on an article entitled “Keeper of My Own Flame”. I had remembered reading the piece before and googled your name – are you the same Andrea?
    Either way I am happy to have found your blog 🙂


    • Yes, I wrote that essay a long time ago. It was originally titled “To Build a Fire.” That was not exciting enough, I guess, for its first publisher, the Chicago Tribune. They changed the title to “Primal Flame.” Reader’s Digest reprinted it in a much abridged version and they called it “Keeper of My Own Flame,” a title I didn’t like at all. However, the letters I received from elders all over the country were wonderful. People talked about the wood stoves and fireplaces and coal stoves that had once kept them warm and I was so pleased they shared their memories with me. And now here you are. We never know who our writing will touch. Thanks for reading the blog. Welcome to Alice’s world.


  5. Sher Davidson Says:

    Hello Andrea,

    As an aspiring writer myself, I was delighted when Leigh Coffey told me about your blog “Go Ask Alice”. I was touched by your entry about your mother and it made me wish mine were still around. I have become a “follower” and will look forward to receiving notice of future entries. Thanks for your wit and warmth. Sher


    • Hello, Sher and welcome. Leigh is such a wonderful promoter of Alice’s world. Special kudos to her for passing the blog on to you. I hope it will bring back many good memories of times you had with your mother.


  6. Andrea, my partner Pamela and I have been looking for you since the first time we read The Riverhouse Stories to each other. We are reading them again and decided to try again to locate you, with obvious success! We would love to see your riverhouse. We often look at them wondering which one might be Pubah and Lazy’s. Happy to know you are still floating around the river. Might actually need some editing services in the future, as well. Hope to be on touch. Thank you for these wonderful stories. They always lift our spirits! Blessings, Alison and Pamela


  7. are you a 94 old lady????????????????? i need this for a project so answer


    • No, but my mother is in her nineties. She was ninety-four when I started writing this blog about her. Now she’s ninety-six. Good luck with your project, Pipi LongStocking.


  8. Aimee Watson Says:

    could you put more about yourself like your childhood


    • This blog really isn’t about me, Aimee. It’s about my mother. There are lots and lots of stories here about her childhood way back at the beginning of the last century. You could read, for example, the blog post titled “Running Around with Mama,” or the one called “The Children’s Hour.”


    • Hmmmm…Aimee, I see by your e-mail address that you and Pipi Longstocking might be one and the same. I hope your school project is a success.


  9. Mousey Brown Says:

    Andrea, on my walk to work every day, I go by a little stand that offers a new poem every few days. I was especially delighted a few weeks ago by one having to do with Emily Dickinson’s To-Do List, and I was further intrigued when I saw your name listed at the bottom as the person responsible for it. Could it be the same Andrea of Go Ask Alice fame, I wondered. How wonderful to encounter your name so unexpectedly attached to a poem I enjoyed thoroughly. Thank you!


    • How kind. Thank you! I love the fact that the poem is out there that way. Those little poem posts are here and there. I’ve seen them around SE and NE Portland. Maybe there are some in NW too, but I’ve not seen one yet.


  10. Angel Z Says:

    Question, do you still get emails if you no longer write your blog?


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