I was born in Chicago, but moved with my parents and brother to Hot Springs, Arkansas when I was four years old, so I consider myself a Southerner.

Although one of my earliest ambitions was to be a writer, I managed to put off getting serious about it for a great many years. My first success was to have  short stories and informative articles published in several children’s magazines. Then I had  two juvenile time-travel novels accepted for publication. Instead of following up on this encouraging beginning, I permitted myself to become immersed in teaching, continuing education, and academic writing.

My academic articles have been published in Education TodayThe Christian Science MonitorTranslation TodayJournal of Religion and Popular Culture and a recent textbook about the Middle Ages. My children’s stories and articles have  appeared in Highlights for Children and Jack and Jill Magazine.

More than a thousand of my articles about English usage and vocabulary are archived at Daily Writing Tips.  I was editor and chief contributor from the site’s inception in 2007 until November 2010. I returned  to to the site in 2013. Since November 2013, I’ve been adding seven posts a week to the collection.

My most recent books available at include So You Want to Write! (50 essays on the writing craft), A Joan for All Seasons (film guide to six movies about Joan of Arc), and the revised 100 Writing Mistakes to Avoid (brief style guide to common writing errors).

I have bachelor’s degrees in English from Oklahoma City University and the University of London (England) and the MA and PhD in comparative literature from the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville).

My birth name is Margaret Joan Maddox. I started writing as Maeve Maddox in 2007. My work  has appeared under the following names:

Margaret Joan Maddox
Margaret Maddox
M. J. Maddox
Peggy Maddox

Advice to writers just starting out: Stick to one name for everything.




  1. Maeve Maddox says:

    Hi Gary!
    Would you believe this is the first time I’ve checked this site since you made your comment? Sorry. I’m not at all good at promoting myself.

    I went back and looked at the Data in the Media post at DWT and was suitably chagrined to see my error. “Any is” of course. I’ll have to figure out how to fix that.

    Thanks for the feedback.

  2. Gary Pandolfi says:

    Hi Maeve,
    I enjoy your Daily Writing Tips and recommend them to my students. In the first example in “Data Is and Media Are” the subject of the sentence is ‘any’ so the verb ‘is’ agrees. ‘Data’ is the object of the preposition ‘of.’ So, it would seem that the usage is not inconsistent in Forbes.

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