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seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 3, 2007, 9:36 AM

Post #126 of 213 (3589 views)
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Re: [malber] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

You're right, Malber. GRE is required for other programs, which I plan to take regardless. Out of the eight schools, only five schools state that the GRE is crucial for admissions into a MFA program. To make sure that the admissions webpage for UW-Madison, Syracuse, and Brooklyn College were correct, I called each institution and spoke to the MFA graduate director AND graduate admissions. Sure enough, it's accurate. So, yes, a polished and well-executed writing sample (as mentioned in this--and other--forum) is your first ticket into a graduate program.


hamlet3145


Apr 3, 2007, 10:39 AM

Post #127 of 213 (3573 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

My main gripe with the GRE (other than its complete irrelevance as a measure of worth for a creative writing applicant) is the cost. You only get four "free" score reports to send out to schools and then need to pay for each additional report. Considering that by and large these scores are sent electronically (with all the incured expense of an e-mail) the company, then, is making about 4 bajillion percent profit.

IMO, the only worry people should have about the GRE is 1) remembering to take it and 2) being able to pay for it on top of all the application & transcript fees. For a full boat of 12 program applications one can easily be out over $1000 dollars in total cost.


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 3, 2007, 10:47 AM

Post #128 of 213 (3568 views)
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Re: [Hamlet3145] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

That's true. I recall scheduling for the GRE during undegrad, then later heard each test taker can send scores to only four schools for free--and, of course, a tacked-on fee of $15 for each additional school. Yes, it's a corporate scam and, yes, your last point is right on the mark. Then again I promise myself to apply to only 8 schools, lest spending $1000 would blast a hole through my savings!


hamlet3145


Apr 3, 2007, 10:50 AM

Post #129 of 213 (3565 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

You know, I keep mentioning 12 schools but truth be told I "only" applied to 8 myself. =)


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 3, 2007, 10:57 AM

Post #130 of 213 (3560 views)
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Re: [Hamlet3145] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

At least you applied to 'a' program and get in. Then again, I'm going to wait until I turn 30 or 31 once I start applying for a MFA program. Here I come Ploughshares magazine!


madgraceflint


Apr 3, 2007, 1:47 PM

Post #131 of 213 (3529 views)
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Re: [Moonshade] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the feedback on the UCLA extension program Moonshade! It's good to get more feedback. Did the instructor also advise you on published stories to read and things to look for in them?


madgraceflint


Apr 3, 2007, 1:50 PM

Post #132 of 213 (3527 views)
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Re: [Junior Maas] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Junior!

You know, I've done workshops with people who just met up to write and read what they'd written. I guess I'm looking for a more rigorous and careful kind of feedback than what I've experienced so far.

And unfortunately, most of my friends aren't interested in poetry (or perhaps that's a nice way of telling me they don't like mine?... ulp!).

If you know of any good online communities of serious writers, though, I'd be interested.


madgraceflint


Apr 3, 2007, 1:53 PM

Post #133 of 213 (3524 views)
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Re: [Junior Maas] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Of course, I realize the speakeasy is a place serious writers hang out, but I'm under the impression we're not supposed to be doing crits here...


wilmabluekitty
Wilma Weant Dague

Apr 3, 2007, 9:28 PM

Post #134 of 213 (3474 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Is it permissable to send a photcopy with the promise of official scores if accepted?


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 3, 2007, 9:34 PM

Post #135 of 213 (3471 views)
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Re: [wilmabluekitty] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey wilmabluekitty,

It's unclear when you say, "the promise of official scores." But, from what I gather, you're asking is it okay to send a photocopy of your GRE scores to a specific institution, n'est-ce pas?


wilmabluekitty
Wilma Weant Dague

Apr 3, 2007, 9:37 PM

Post #136 of 213 (3466 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

I mean, instead of paying fifteen bucks a pop. send a photocopy of your scores and say that you'll have ETS send them if necessary.


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 3, 2007, 10:09 PM

Post #137 of 213 (3455 views)
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Re: [wilmabluekitty] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Ah, yes wilmabluekitty. I may take that route, but it depends on the department whether they take photocopied scores and such. We'll see


rpc
ryan call

Apr 4, 2007, 10:29 AM

Post #138 of 213 (3397 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

acc. to cnn
ets wont be using the new gre after all

so yeah

http://www.cnn.com/...hanges.ap/index.html


<HTMLGIANT>


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 4, 2007, 10:45 AM

Post #139 of 213 (3392 views)
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Re: [rpc] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Sheesh. I just printed out the article and it appears that the ETS test-makers decide to scrap the old idea! HA! What a joke.


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 4, 2007, 10:47 AM

Post #140 of 213 (3390 views)
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Re: [seemingmeaning] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

And it was meant in a good way!


motet
Dana Davis / Moderator
e-mail user

Apr 7, 2007, 9:15 AM

Post #141 of 213 (3295 views)
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Re: [madgraceflint] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Of course, I realize the speakeasy is a place serious writers hang out, but I'm under the impression we're not supposed to be doing crits here...



That's correct and if someone has posted their original work and I've missed it, I'd appreciate your pointing me to it. Otherwise, exchanging original work privately for critique, or critiquing the particulars of a program, a process or a place, is perfectly acceptable.

Dana


__________



Apr 7, 2007, 7:22 PM

Post #142 of 213 (3237 views)
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Re: [motet] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey guys.

No one posted their work. I was suggesting, since there are only, what, twelve or so spots in an extension class, you guys would be better off just e-mailing work among yourselves instead of paying $600 for a moderator. Seriously. Those classes are a meaningless credit. And aside from peer commentary, what you're getting are lame exercises sniped from any number of books straight from the the Half-Price $1 bin. You could just as easily decide to be accountable to each other...for a big, big savings!

Just my opinion.


six five four three two one 0 ->


mccrary

e-mail user

Jan 29, 2008, 4:15 PM

Post #143 of 213 (3074 views)
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Re: [creative8] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

I was just wondering if Universities are more likely to accept a writer into their MFA program if they've been published before. I've only been published twice, besides in my current university's literary magazine, and I was hoping that it would help my chances.
Does anyone know?


writerteacher


Jan 29, 2008, 7:21 PM

Post #144 of 213 (3014 views)
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Re: [idreamincursive] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi, idreamincursive --

The common wisdom is no, having publishing credits will not give you a bump. What the program committee cares about first and nearly last is your writing; does it show promise, and can the program nurture it and help it develop? So, your writing sample is by far the most critical part of your application. (They also want to know that you're a relatively "normal" person in the social sense; that you won't bring big weirdness and cause disruption and/or dysfunction to the program...but those concerns come after they're sold on the writing sample.)

Publication is no testament to quality, of course, and it's hard to think of something more subjective than taste. There are plenty of pieces in lit and glossy mags that are pretty mundane, after all. Present company excepted! Congratulations on the pubs.

Actually, if I were on an admissions committee and I saw a applicant with a slew of (respectable) credits, I'd wonder why s/he were applying -- to pick up a teaching credential/terminal degree? It's a legitimate reason, and I'd expect to see it explained in the personal statement, but the writing sample still would have to win me over.

Anyway, publication won't hurt you and may advance your credibility with the graduate school if there are other areas of your app that are not strong, like undergrad GPA or GRE scores. The Creative Writing committee, though, doesn't give a rip about those things as I understand it.

It's a goofy process, but really pretty straightforward considering the subjectivity involved.

Best wishes!


malber


Jan 29, 2008, 11:41 PM

Post #145 of 213 (2947 views)
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Re: [idreamincursive] Preparing for an MFA [In reply to] Can't Post

yeah. what writerteacher said. they don't care about anything, literally anything, until they love your writing sample. then, they make excuses to let you in... too many pubs? she'll be a tribute to the program. not enough? we can mold her. GPA low? who among us hasn't let grades slip...


monarca


Jan 30, 2008, 1:28 PM

Post #146 of 213 (2864 views)
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amount of work? [In reply to] Can't Post

I was wondering if anyone had an idea on how much work MFA students tend to bring into the MFA program versus how much original work they generate inside the program. Do a lot of MFA students bring an already solid body of work to their program with hopes of polishing everything up? Or do more MFA students come into their programs ready to start new things?

I'm worried about this because I feel as though most of the work I've done already is work I don't necessarily want to stick with. Even the pieces I submitted with my application aren't pieces I want to publish. Not to say that they couldn't be, just that I'm not interested in dragging them into an MFA program if I have the opportunity to start newer stories that I'm more excited about.


Sugah


Jan 30, 2008, 1:34 PM

Post #147 of 213 (2860 views)
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Re: [monarca] amount of work? [In reply to] Can't Post

I couldn't tell you which schools, but a couple on my list (Pitt, PSU, Chatham, Carlow) specify that only work generated while in the program fulfills the manuscript/thesis requirement. As far as any individual course, I can't say. I'm flying blind right now.


http://sugahsshack.blogspot.com


ptld


Jan 30, 2008, 2:37 PM

Post #148 of 213 (2821 views)
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Re: [monarca] amount of work? [In reply to] Can't Post

based on the people i know, everyone has generated the majority of their work while here. even people who came in hoping to polish away seem to have outgrown their work really quickly and taken up newer and bigger projects. i started working on something over the summer so i wouldn't show up empty handed. i was pleased with my piece, but then i wrote something much better over the next three weeks for my second workshop submission and haven't looked back since.


symmetrical


Feb 8, 2008, 2:16 PM

Post #149 of 213 (2688 views)
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NEW - rec. letters [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm planning on applying for 2009, and am starting to think about possible letter writers. I've had two CW teachers who were both visiting fellows for the year, one went on a stagner fellowship, and the other is a fromer stegner fellow who is still here (Wisconsin-Madison). Any thoughts/advice on whether there are any written/unwritten rules concerning getting letters from these people? Does tha fact that they're not yet full faculty members make them less credible or less useful in any way? I'm hoping not, since I don't have too many other options.


unsaid78


Feb 8, 2008, 3:32 PM

Post #150 of 213 (2651 views)
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Bucknell Seminar for Younger Poets [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey all,

I'm planning to apply for an MFA in poetry for 2009. I'm wondering if anyone else who is preparing applied for the Bucknell Seminar for Younger Poets this year? I figure if I get accepted (they only take 10) then that will help me polish off my writing sample.

So I'm getting a taste of anxiety because I googled and I found where someone posted on their blog that they received notification that they got in already. The website says they notify in March!! I'm not complaining that they started early I just want a letter too!

Did anyone else here apply? Heard anything yet?


www.mfachronicles.blogspot.com - Follow us as we begin our 1st years in MFA programs!

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