Spinning the Plan Sideways

Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Manuel Gonzales


Spinning the Plan Sideways is the story of Clara Gantz, a thirty-eight year old architect who spent her twenties getting her plans—and sections and elevations—just right. She built buildings in lieu of a family and has considered these buildings her children, but lately she’s been finding a void in wood, marble, and steel. Encouraged, with methods bordering on coercion, by Greta, her “sister” from the Gantz Home for Girls, Clara agrees to mentor Julien, a troubled twelve-year-old. Years ago, when Julien was five, his mother split their house apart, lifting it to make three-stories from one, and moved into the top level with her new husband and daughter, leaving Julien and his father, Michel on the levels below. The separation drove Michel to attempt suicide on Julien’s ninth birthday leaving him with violent aversions to homes over one-story tall. As Clara works with Julien, she discovers her life had been focused on developing the wrong types of plans and she invests in creating new plans for herself, Julien, and Michel. The story unfolds through the parallel viewpoints of Clara and Michel, with Julien’s Grim Fairytale tucked in the middle.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


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