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joefazio


Apr 5, 2005, 10:34 AM

Post #1 of 67 (10767 views)
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Boston University Can't Post

Hello to everyone,

I just came across this forum yesterday. Lots of great info to be had. I was wondering if anyone has had any experience with creative writing program at BU? I tried a search but did not come up with much. I understand it's not an MFA program, but this seemed like the place to post.

Thanks,
Joe


(This post was edited by motet on Mar 28, 2006, 9:07 AM)


rtperson
Roger Turnau

Apr 5, 2005, 11:45 AM

Post #2 of 67 (10746 views)
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Re: [joefazio] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

If you can find your way into the archives, there were several postings about BU a few years ago. From what I remember, there's a lot to be said about the program. Great faculty, with Robert Pinsky and Derek Walcott on the poetry side and Ha Jin, Leslie Epstein and Martha Cooley in fiction. They've graduated some top-notch writers, including Jhumpa Lahiri, Ha Jin and Peter Ho Davies. And they have an incredible location not too far from Boston's Back Bay. (Emerson's better situated, but its writing program can't touch BU's reputation.)

On the negative side, the program is only a year long (which is why I didn't apply -- I wanted longer), and I'm not sure how generous they are with funding. Their web site says that assistantships and fellowships are available, but you'd still have to contend with the price of Boston which, while it isn't quite as pricey as New York, still ain't cheap.

Lastly, apropos of nothing, a few graduates from BU's writing program recently started Post Road, which has become one of my favorite literary magazines.

Not quite an insider's POV, but I hope this helps.


thebeatbaby


Apr 5, 2005, 4:45 PM

Post #3 of 67 (10720 views)
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Re: [joefazio] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

i went to bu undergrad, knew some of the poets and I've met some more poets after who went there.

For Poetry I've heard, Pinsky's great and Walcott doesn't care who you are but he's Walcott so you don't care if he knows who you are.

Leslie Epstein, who's the head of the program and a fiction guy, is supposed be a little bit hard to take.

it's just a year, but i think everyone or most everyone gets funding and there's no reason when you're done that you can't go get an mfa too. I'm in school with someone who's doing that right now.


catenz
CATenz

Apr 5, 2005, 8:13 PM

Post #4 of 67 (10696 views)
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Re: [thebeatbaby] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

I have opinions, but don't want to iterate hearsay, so it might be worth it to go back a few years to check out posts. In any case, given all the good and bad things I've heard, I'd still apply (even if only for a year). Some grads of the program also started grubstreet.org, which is a cool Boston non-profit. You might want to check into that, and see if anyone there's willing to offer responses about the program.


wiswriter
Bob S.
e-mail user

Apr 6, 2005, 1:48 AM

Post #5 of 67 (10667 views)
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Re: [rtperson] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Lastly, apropos of nothing, a few graduates from BU's writing program recently started Post Road, which has become one of my favorite literary magazines.


Actually, Post Road was founded by Bennington MFA students in 1999. Glad you like the magazine. It's a cool thing. They celebrated their 10th issue with an excellent after-hours party last weekend at AWP in Vancouver, with many Bennington faculty, students and alums in attendance, including this reporter. I urge everyone to check it out; the online edition is at www.postroadmag.com.


rtperson
Roger Turnau

Apr 6, 2005, 12:53 PM

Post #6 of 67 (10630 views)
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Re: [wiswriter] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Consider me corrected, and thanks for straightening me out!

Tell the editors to keep up the good work -- Post Road is one of the few litmags that retains my interest when I read from cover to cover.


catenz
CATenz

Apr 6, 2005, 8:31 PM

Post #7 of 67 (10598 views)
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Re: [rtperson] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

BU's lit mag (headed by Sven Birkerts and worthy of its own commendation) is Agni.


joysan


Apr 7, 2005, 12:27 PM

Post #8 of 67 (10566 views)
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Re: [catenz] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

though BU has rejected me twice! (owch), my mentor was in the program, and an acquaintance went through their program also. it is only one year. that really must zip through very quickly. I do like Roseanne Warren, I'm not as drawn to Walcott's work (I know he's a big name). I did sit in on one of their workshop sessions and when i left I asked Robert Pinsky if it was an undergraduate course. I didn't find their work very developed, which I guess makes it better or worse that they didn't accept me.

in other news I talked to another poetry MFA at Sarah Lawrence -- he regrets the high cost, and does say that the even in a two year program you can think "oh sh*t, I have to finish my book" he manages to attend SL while living in b'lyn.

/j


joefazio


Apr 14, 2005, 2:47 PM

Post #9 of 67 (10509 views)
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Re: [joysan] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi,

Thanks to everyone who replied. I guess I should have been more specific in my original post. I will actually be going to BU in the fall for fiction. I'm familiar with the school itself and the area (I live in Boston, girlfriend went to BU as an undergrad). I guess what I was looking for was some kind of insider info (love it/hate it/meh?) from someone who has gone through the program.

Thanks,
Joe


taizhu


Apr 14, 2005, 4:13 PM

Post #10 of 67 (10498 views)
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Re: [joefazio] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Joe,

If I were you I would ask the school for contact info for current/past students so that you can ask them directly. I did this for every school I got into and seriously considered. I spoke to 4-5 people at each school and got a pretty good understanding of the environment.


smiggles


Jun 11, 2005, 6:49 PM

Post #11 of 67 (10443 views)
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Re: [joefazio] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

The B.U. fiction program is very busy because it's only a year. You are really kept hopping trying to finish the work. It can be a shock to your creativity if you're not used to writing new fiction very VERY quickly. It sort of goes by in a blur with ups and downs depending on how the writing is going. It's definitely not the place to dawdle along.


minnie


Nov 19, 2005, 7:22 PM

Post #12 of 67 (10327 views)
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Re: [smiggles] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree that the program at Boston is very rushed, but they really pack a lot of writing into one year. The downside is that you also have to take a couple of literature courses, which really cuts into your time--time you don't have. But, it's very intensive and you can learn a lot--as long as you want to write mostly realistic stories, with plots and not a lot of subjective, interior sort of writing. And even if you don't, writing this way is still a great foundation. So many of their alumni have won awards and have published successfully. They also have more funding now than in the past. Definitely a program to consider!


motet
Dana Davis / Moderator
e-mail user

Nov 20, 2005, 8:38 AM

Post #13 of 67 (10311 views)
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Re: [minnie] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi minnie and welcome to the Speakeasy. We're so glad you've joined us! Are you a graduate of the Boston program?

Dana


almost


Mar 23, 2006, 2:35 PM

Post #14 of 67 (10157 views)
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Re: [joefazio] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

When can we expect to hear from Boston University, too? Ahhhh the anticipation! Ahhh!


Logann


Mar 23, 2006, 10:57 PM

Post #15 of 67 (10124 views)
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Re: [almost] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

we shoulld hear in about two weeks if we get in via phone-- and about one month via mail if we dont. im not sure about waitlists though...


rapunzel1983
Marisa Lee

Mar 24, 2006, 1:56 PM

Post #16 of 67 (10099 views)
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Re: [Logann] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Yeah, it's too bad it's not more than 1 year. I LOVE HA JIN. Waiting was one of my favorite books of all time. And I refer to Jhumpa Lahiri's work everyday.

I have a feeling they won't like me. Leslie Epstein's little note of caution put me in distress for several days.

Anyway, I don't think I'm going to get in. I applied there just because I love Boston and the faculty ("pleasepleasepleasedon'trejectmeiadmireyouguyssomuch").

I have other great choices, though.

I'm kind of disappointed I most likely won't get to be anywhere in the northeast. I'll have to leave my friends and family which is not a problem, of course, but I'm envious of my friends tucked nicely away at Harvard and NYU, within driving distance.

What do you mean Leslie Epstein is hard to take? I'm curious. He seems brilliant and intimidating.


Kcchen


Mar 27, 2006, 9:53 PM

Post #17 of 67 (10042 views)
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Re: [rapunzel1983] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Please post if anyone's heard from BU yet!


Kcchen


Mar 30, 2006, 1:04 PM

Post #18 of 67 (9979 views)
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Re: [Kcchen] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

One more call for BU! anybody anybody?


tayjay


Apr 1, 2006, 5:46 PM

Post #19 of 67 (9938 views)
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Re: [Kcchen] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi! Robert Pinsky just called to tell me I got into BU! I'm still in shock. Anyone else get a call?


http://a-quiet-light.livejournal.com/


dietsnapple


Apr 1, 2006, 10:15 PM

Post #20 of 67 (9908 views)
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Re: [tayjay] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

   
I got a call from Pinsky as well, and officially confirmed my enrollment at BU today. I'm so excited; BU was my first choice. Pinsky sounds like a wonderful person and poet. I'm just disappointed that he will be on leave next year.


Kcchen


Apr 1, 2006, 10:28 PM

Post #21 of 67 (9901 views)
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Re: [dietsnapple] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

are you guys poets?


tayjay


Apr 2, 2006, 12:48 AM

Post #22 of 67 (9881 views)
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Re: [Kcchen] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes.


http://a-quiet-light.livejournal.com/


Kcchen


Apr 2, 2006, 3:42 AM

Post #23 of 67 (9869 views)
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Re: [tayjay] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

so....do we think that pinsky only called the poets and us fiction ppl still stand a chance?


Elika619


Feb 23, 2007, 6:27 PM

Post #24 of 67 (9643 views)
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Re: [Kcchen] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey guys...I just finished my on-line application for BU as my last attempt to get in to an MFA program. I was able to upload my WS and SOP online. Any need to send in hardcopies too?

Thanks!! :)


mrsriley72


Mar 16, 2007, 8:25 PM

Post #25 of 67 (9544 views)
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In Reply To
Anyone hear anything on this program yet??



BarlArten


Mar 20, 2007, 12:19 PM

Post #26 of 67 (4578 views)
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Re: [mrsriley72] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

I attended the program a few years ago (fiction), and I didn't get my acceptance call until April 2nd.


Ron_in


Jun 6, 2008, 6:48 AM

Post #27 of 67 (4411 views)
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Re: [BarlArten] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I attended the program a few years ago (fiction), and I didn't get my acceptance call until April 2nd.


Hey,

I can see this is a very old thread. What happened to all the lively discussions here? Anyone there? I had a few questions to ask! Really need your help!

AK


februarystar27


Jun 9, 2008, 9:10 AM

Post #28 of 67 (4306 views)
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Re: [Ron_in] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

I have no insight into the program itself (I'm on the waitlist for playwriting... I only applied to five schools and BU's the only glimmer of hope I have left for starting school next year), but I'm from Boston so if you have any questions about the city itself I'd be happy to share any info I have with you. Also, if anyone knows anything about the playwriting program or even when they tend to notify waitlisters I'd love to hear what you have to say. Even if a spot doesn't open up for me this year, I'll most likely keep them on my 2009 list since they responded at least somewhat positively this year.


Ron_in


Jun 9, 2008, 3:35 PM

Post #29 of 67 (4260 views)
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In Reply To
I have no insight into the program itself (I'm on the waitlist for playwriting...

You will have an amazing time in Boston, wish you all the best. Derek Walcott is there and I have read that he brings actors to the class to perform his plays and explain. I have no questions about the city now, wanted to know about the fiction writing program. I read the profiles of the teacher, would have liked to know more about them.

Also, i have been trying to email Matt Yost here : crwr@bu.edu , but all my mails are bouncing. I dont know about any other id where I can get in touch with the Boston people!


oenologist


Jun 9, 2008, 6:00 PM

Post #30 of 67 (4232 views)
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Re: [Ron_in] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey all -- I'll be going to BU next year for playwrighting, anyone else? Febstar have you heard yet??

The only problem is that funding is not that much as I'd hoped -- does anyone know of any other scholarships? I keep finding the most idiotic ones scattered throughout the internet (take a photo of your shoe scholarship? wtf??)

best,
-c


februarystar27


Jun 10, 2008, 10:58 AM

Post #31 of 67 (4192 views)
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Congrats! I haven't heard anything yet. The letter said they'd tell me "as soon as possible" if a spot opens or when the class is definitely full. When were you notified? I didn't get my waitlist letter until around May 20, which seems kind of late based on when they notified poetry and fiction, so it worries me that I might be way down on the waitlist. Do you know how long they gave the acceptees to decide? I'm not getting my hopes up, but I would really love for it to work out for me this year. Even if it doesn't though, the waitlist letter was really encouraging and gave me a bit more hope for next year.


RaoulDuke
Cobra Cobachi

Jun 10, 2008, 12:47 PM

Post #32 of 67 (4180 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Just an interested observer, having been through the waitlist experience myself this season...

I would definitely call and/or email the secretary of the department for some sort of information, if they have any. It won't hurt your chances and it will help ease your mind, at least for a few days. I was definitely the squeaky wheel throughout the waitlist process, and I eventually ended up "getting the oil." Sometimes it really helps to be on a first name basis with the secretary, because they may be more understanding than you would expect.


Good luck though, hope it all turns out well for you!

Rick


februarystar27


Jun 10, 2008, 2:16 PM

Post #33 of 67 (4169 views)
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Re: [richardkae] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks Rick... I believe I remember reading your posts on Seth's blog, so I'm happy that the waitlist process worked out for you. I had been afraid to contact the department because I didn't want to rub them the wrong way and come off as annoying, so it's good to hear that they probably wouldn't take it that way. Then again, as mentioned a few posts back, the crwr@bu address seems to be bouncing back emails, and I tend to turn into a nervous stammering mess on the phone. It can't hurt to try an email though I guess and consider getting up the nerve to call if it bounces back. Thanks for the advice and the encouragement!


februarystar27


Jun 10, 2008, 2:44 PM

Post #34 of 67 (4162 views)
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In Reply To
Also, i have been trying to email Matt Yost here : crwr@bu.edu , but all my mails are bouncing. I dont know about any other id where I can get in touch with the Boston people!


My email to Matt Yost at that address just went through, and he responded within a matter of minutes, so I would give it another shot if you haven't found another way to contact them already. Unfortunately for me, he knew nothing about the status of the playwriting list and recommended that I call Kate Snodgrass at the theater directly. I'd been hoping to avoid using the phone. We'll see if I can feel brave enough to make the call....


Ron_in


Jun 10, 2008, 3:21 PM

Post #35 of 67 (4154 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
Also, i have been trying to email Matt Yost here : crwr@bu.edu , but all my mails are bouncing. I dont know about any other id where I can get in touch with the Boston people!


My email to Matt Yost at that address just went through, and he responded within a matter of minutes,

Even I'm most comfortable with emails. Ha ha we are writers after all! But if its important, you must go ahead. My best wishes to you. You have to ace it!! In minutes? Thats the fastest I have heard. Most universities I emailed replied back withing 24 hrs. But havent got a reply from John Hopkins writing seminars yet. Sent them an email four days back!


RaoulDuke
Cobra Cobachi

Jun 10, 2008, 4:32 PM

Post #36 of 67 (4140 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

It's such a strange process, applying to MFA's, because there is so much uncertainty and anxiety over what will help you and what will hurt you. I found the nerve to call programs by hearing about others doing it on PW.org, and I can honestly say that it's the reason I was offered a position in the only program I was given consideration to.

At SIUC, I was on such pleasant terms with the main secretary that after all the positions were filled in the program she said they could offer me a position, though temporarily unfunded. Promise of funding may be coming this year, but certainly the next. Her and I developed such a friendly rapport that she really felt for my anxious situation (and the fact that SIUC is notoriously SLOW in doing anything) that she looked out for me the best she could.

So, perhaps I would have been offered a position regardless of my constant "badgering", but I honestly believe I got that position by being friendly, though persistent, in my requests for additional waitlist information. In summation, I would call them and be as respectful in your nervous stammering as possible. It won't be the first time they received such a call, I can tell you that much.

Good luck to you!

Rick


oenologist


Jun 11, 2008, 1:23 PM

Post #37 of 67 (4085 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

hey there febstar... I was on the waitinglist and Kate told me on friday last week. I know that she is out of town until tomorrow (thursday) but maybe you could try emailing her?

Hope everything works out! ...


februarystar27


Jun 11, 2008, 1:45 PM

Post #38 of 67 (4079 views)
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Re: [oenologist] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

So there is at least some movement on the waitlist then. That is good to hear. I wonder how long the list is. Did she call or email you with the news? I'll have to try sending her an email tonight when I get home.


februarystar27


Jun 12, 2008, 1:56 PM

Post #39 of 67 (4020 views)
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Re: [oenologist] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know what to do. I did email Kate last night, and she got back to me this afternoon. So, the deal is that the final candidate accepted their offer while she was away, but she said she'd still love to have me in the class and invited me to join. BUT all the financial aid is gone. There's a chance I could get a TA sort of job with the Fine Arts college that would help me out a bit, and I'd probably move back in with my parents for the year (they live in Somerville, just outside of Boston but kind of far from the BU side of Boston) because then housing would be free. But it's still expensive. I don't know if taking one or two of the literature classes in the summer would cut the cost a bit more for me too, but that could potentially help somewhat. So I don't know what to do from here. I'd hate to turn them down and reapply places next year and wind up with rejections across the board. I also really want to stay in the Northeast because my fiance is starting a PhD program at UMass Amherst in the fall and I'd love to stay within driving distance. Plus BU is only one year so I wouldn't have to live away from him for as long as most other programs. But with him in school and my getting no aid it would really be tough. But thank you to everyone who suggested I email/call, because it definitely did help. :) I at least have an option now, which is more than what I had 24 hours ago.


RaoulDuke
Cobra Cobachi

Jun 12, 2008, 6:21 PM

Post #40 of 67 (3995 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Congrats Februarystar, that's not too bad of a deal at all. Personally, I would take it; but keep in mind I don't care about going a couple grand in debt in the name of furthering my academic career. I'm in the same boat as you, with no funding this year but funding promised for the following year. Good luck with your decision making process!


Rick


MarisaLS


Jun 23, 2008, 9:50 PM

Post #41 of 67 (3907 views)
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Re: [richardkae] Boston University? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi, I was just reading this thread and it piqued my interest. I am wondering, what is the average age of those who are in the MFA program at BU? I realize the application deadline is passed for this upcoming year but I am thinking of maybe applying for 2009-2010. I would however been like 35 years old at that point. I have an MFA in film/screenwriting from BU from 1998...am still paying off my loans from that. I've applied to Brown, UMass Amherst, and Cornell twice over the past seven years and got rejected...unfortunately I have medical issues that mean i need to stay in the Boston area, and i need to hold down my full-time job (i teach composition). I want to move towards teaching creative writing (I teach now to high schoolers over the summer months...). Many people advise me that I do not need another MFA but that i need to publish in order to be competitive in the university jobmarket, yet I see a lot of the teaching jobs ask for an MFA in poetry or creative writing... just tossing it around in my head. Obviously money and health insurance are huge issues for me and I need to keep most of what I have now intact or it won't work for me. I wonder what kind of path I should take. I feel like I have floundered a bit these past years. Wonder what anyone thinks...thanks...

(This post was edited by MarisaLS on Jun 23, 2008, 9:54 PM)


swiviol


Mar 26, 2009, 6:17 PM

Post #42 of 67 (3759 views)
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BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I emailed them today and got a reply that letters are going out Monday ... do you think that means that acceptance calls are going out over the weekend? Someone on Seth's blog said that they are admitting 10/200 that applied, and they will call if you got in, email if waitlisted, and send a letter if rejected.

Ahhhh!


februarystar27


Mar 27, 2009, 9:11 PM

Post #43 of 67 (3676 views)
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Re: [swiviol] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

swiviol, I read that news on Seth's blog too. But I'm playwriting, and I'm guessing that news only applies to fiction, so I've been so anxious about when I'll hear from them. I'm the one a few posts up who had been admitted off the waitlist for playwriting last year. When I couldn't make it work without funding, they let me defer until this year, but I still don't know if there will be any money available. I've been so worried about it because I would really love to make this happen but I'm already so far in debt from my undergrad loans. I'm so nervous... I'd love to hear something this weekend. Good luck to you and all the other fiction applicants (and other playwriting people if there are any of you around) hoping to hear some good news soon, and congrats to those of you poets who have been called already! Hopefully I will be seeing some of you this fall.


swiviol


Mar 28, 2009, 12:22 AM

Post #44 of 67 (3656 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Good luck to you as well, w/ funding :).


lowercase


Mar 30, 2009, 10:31 AM

Post #45 of 67 (3586 views)
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Re: BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I just got accepted to BU with the choice of either a tuition fellowship or a teaching fellowship in fiction. Are there any current or past students out there who can give me a bit of info on the program and if they taught, what their experience was? I've heard that the one-year can be really intense, and I'm wondering what the faculty support is like on the thesis and basically anything about the program in general. Thanks!


PJwave1


Mar 30, 2009, 10:37 AM

Post #46 of 67 (3579 views)
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Re: [lowercase] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

lowercase,

Congrats!

did you get accepted yesterday or this morning?


lowercase


Mar 30, 2009, 10:39 AM

Post #47 of 67 (3576 views)
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Re: [PJwave1] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I got accepted last night by phone! Leslie Epstein mentioned that they are accepting around 10 fiction students in total.


swiviol


Mar 30, 2009, 11:25 AM

Post #48 of 67 (3553 views)
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Re: [lowercase] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Congrats, lowercase!

Someone on TSE got in by phone last night as well, so I am thinking I am rejected :(. That only leaves American ...


flergenderg


Mar 30, 2009, 2:06 PM

Post #49 of 67 (3500 views)
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Re: [swiviol] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I hear ya swiviol--no acceptance here. I'm out of schools; all rejections. Maybe I'll see you folks next year. Good luck.


Chess


Mar 30, 2009, 9:47 PM

Post #50 of 67 (3429 views)
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Re: [swiviol] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Does anyone know whether all the applicants who have been accepted/waitlisted have been notified already? I haven't heard anything and it makes me sad.


februarystar27


Mar 31, 2009, 1:24 PM

Post #51 of 67 (6312 views)
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Re: [Chess] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I got a 617 area code call today on my cell phone (which is also my own area code, so usually anyone from 617 who calls me is already entered into my address book), and I thought it might be BU and panicked and most likely answered the phone sounding like a crazy person. But then it just turned out to be a friend from my office, calling about a work question since I work from home and can't answer anything in person. The wait is driving me insane. Has anyone heard from playwriting yet or know when they might be notifying?

I have a weird question, now that poets have been called and at least two fiction people were called. Have any of your heard anything about the program expanding from one year to two to three years? When I had to defer my acceptance last year, Kate Snodgrass in playwriting told me to be aware of the fact that if I waited until 2009, the program would become two and a half to three years starting with that entering class. But the website says nothing at all about this, other than one line on the Playwrights' Theatre page that says something like "we plan to add production courses in fall '09." The main CW page still says the thing about "with our single year of residence...." Is playwriting the only program that is expanding? Or maybe the expansion plan was scrapped since I last heard about it because of the economy or something? I've just been very confused about it but also interested to learn more about it if anyone else has heard.

And to anyone still waiting... I mentioned this on Seth's blog already, but I didn't get my waitlist letter until around May 20 last year. I had completely given up hope and was shocked when it arrived. And I contacted them and ended up being offered admission. So don't give up. :)


Chess


Mar 31, 2009, 2:07 PM

Post #52 of 67 (6283 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Got my rejection letters from Houston and Irvine (finally) and called Boston University. Rejected there too, but Matt Yost was very nice.

Rejections total: 14 (including an assumed rejection from Virginia)

My only hope is being on the waitlisted for NYU (fiction). Nobody go there!


Chess


Mar 31, 2009, 2:11 PM

Post #53 of 67 (6276 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

 

februarystar27 What school offered you acceptance so late?


februarystar27


Mar 31, 2009, 2:35 PM

Post #54 of 67 (6254 views)
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Re: [Chess] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh, sorry, it was BU playwriting (see a few posts back for my last-year's dilemma as it unfolded). I'd gone 0-for-4 before finally getting that waitlist letter in late May, so I was definitely shocked. And then I figured that since I was hearing from them so late that I must be way down on their waiting list. The letter was very nice though and was encouraging after four straight rejections (five if you count the one that Carnegie Mellon felt the need to send twice :P). I waited a few weeks to see if I'd hear from them, and then in mid-June I emailed Matt Yost, but he knew nothing about the playwriting list. So I sent an email to Kate Snodgrass, and she told me that the last offer had just been accepted but that she would love to have me in the class anyway if I were still interested. The catch was that there was no funding left. I talked to her on the phone, and she was really nice and really helpful as we discussed ways to cut costs, but I ultimately couldn't make it work because my undergrad loans are already so high. I'd told her that if I had to decline it would be strictly for financial reasons and that I would definitely keep BU in mind when I reapplied in '09, which is when she offered to let me defer the acceptance to this year. I wasn't expecting an offer like that at all, which is why I definitely encourage any waitlisters to contact the programs, because you never know what could happen. And now here I am at the end of March '09 sitting on pins and needles waiting to hear if I will fare any better in the funding area this year. Good luck with NYU! I really hope that works out for you.


swiviol


Mar 31, 2009, 3:00 PM

Post #55 of 67 (6237 views)
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Re: [Chess] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Chess, I emailed Matt Yost last week and he said letters were being sent out on Monday. I'm way too scared to actually call him!
(was he nice?)

I figure I'll get my letter tomorrow or Thurs. since I live in Michigan, but it's kinda suspicious that no one in the Boston/New England area has received them yet.


swiviol


Apr 2, 2009, 2:56 PM

Post #56 of 67 (6162 views)
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Re: [swiviol] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Has anyone been waitlisted yet at BU? Or received their rejection letter yet? I have heard nothing from them either way - I'm assuming I'm not accepted or waitlisted, but I'm still not sure ... really don't want to call them to find out that I'm rejected :(.


februarystar27


May 15, 2009, 12:30 PM

Post #57 of 67 (5978 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't think anyone is active in this thread anymore, but I figured I'd say that I finally heard from the playwriting dept. last night via email. It does sound like the program can still be completed in a single year rather than the longer program I'd heard about last year. So I'm pretty much in the same position I was in last year--in but without funding (at least for now, hopefully something opens up for me somehow but I can't count on it). I'm trying to see if I can make it work somehow with transfer credits and courses at BU's summer session, but I haven't given my final decision yet. Anyone else hear from playwriting?


februarystar27


Sep 18, 2009, 9:52 AM

Post #58 of 67 (5635 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Just thought I'd post this for any potential 2010 applicants.... BU has this new global fellowship program that started with the class who graduated in 2009. They funded about 20% of the class to go abroad for a few months anywhere they chose to study or do anything they wanted to further their writing. I'm in the playwriting program now (see previous post--funding came through!), and they're hoping to fund close to half of my creative writing class. Anyway, just thought I'd share that bit of info. Good luck to everyone applying this year!


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Nov 12, 2009, 10:48 AM

Post #59 of 67 (5286 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

That sounds really interestingódo you know how they determine which students are permitted to travel abroad? And for those selected, do they travel during their single year at BU, or the summer afterward? (It seems it would be nearly impossible to complete the MFA in one year if even a few months were spent abroad...)


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


februarystar27


Nov 12, 2009, 11:23 AM

Post #60 of 67 (5278 views)
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Re: [ericweinstein] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Eric, our deadline to apply for the fellowships hasn't come up yet, so I don't know entirely how it works, but I believe that anyone interested submits a proposal to the head of their genre. The thing I'm not sure of is whether, for example, Leslie Epstein picks the fiction students, Robert Pinsky selects the poets, and Kate Snodgrass chooses the playwrights, or whether there's some sort of faculty committee that chooses the entire group out of the whole program. It does sound like they're pretty flexible for when you go abroad. If you're one of the few who are graduating in May (it seems like almost no one does this), then you can go abroad in the summer. If, like myself and many others, you are taking electives over the summer, they allow you to start your trip in the fall. What I don't know is what happens to people who are spreading the program over two years and taking their electives in the second year. I think that's becoming more common now that the program is an MFA not an MA, so they must have some sort of policy for it. But I'm not sure if those people would have to do their abroad trip in the summer and then come back and finish up their electives or if they'd be able to postpone their trip until their graduation requirements were all set. I'm definitely applying for it though. I'm hoping to be done with my electives after this summer since I transferred one of them in, so if I were chosen I'd do my abroad trip next fall.


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Nov 16, 2009, 11:29 PM

Post #61 of 67 (5195 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

That sounds phenomenal, & is definitely one of the program's biggest draws for me.


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


februarystar27


Nov 17, 2009, 8:38 AM

Post #62 of 67 (5169 views)
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Re: [ericweinstein] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Yeah, it is a really great opportunity. There's blogs from the '09 students who went abroad on the Creative Writing website if you wanted to see some of the places they went and how they spent their time.

I can only speak for the playwriting dept since I have no experience with the poetry and fiction workshops, but I am loving the program so far. I'm almost done with my first semester, which is crazy. I'm taking just the two workshops, but they're really good about letting you be certified as full-time status even without a full couseload. Like I said, it seems like hardly anyone is ready to graduate by May of the first year... it's only your writing classes that need to be done by then. I'm not sure what genre you're going for, but I know a couple of the poets and they're great and really nice. I only briefly met some of the fiction students, but the few I met were fun too (playwriting feels a bit more separated from the other two genres since our classes meet at the theater, which is like a 20 minute walk from the Creative Writing building, so I almost never run into any of the other students).


lorre


Jul 5, 2011, 11:52 AM

Post #63 of 67 (2654 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey guys,

Iím interested in the BU poetry program, and I have one question about it. My parents live within walking distance of the BU campus, so Iím wondering: could I live at home with them during my time at BU, or do full-residency MFA programs require their students to live in campus sponsored housing? Iím wondering about this because money is a concern for me and living at home seems like a way to save a bunch of it. Though I guess another issue is whether the potential drawbacks (in terms of social life and maybe productivity) would even be worth the financial saving.

Or, any other general thoughts about the poetry MFA at BU?

Thanks!


februarystar27


Jul 5, 2011, 12:01 PM

Post #64 of 67 (2651 views)
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Re: [lorre] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey lorre--I was playwriting at BU, so I'm not the best person to talk to about poetry, but I got an email alert when my old post had been replied to, so I figured I'd reply. :)

So, I lived at home as well when I did the program. My parents are from Somerville and I saved a TON of money living there and taking the T in for class. There's no on-campus housing for grad students at all, so no matter what you have to live off-campus. I'd definitely live at home if it wouldn't be a concentration distraction, especially if it's within walking distance, rather than one-hour T ride I put up with.

Definitely let me know if you have general questions about the program that aren't specific to poetry. I loved my playwriting class, and I knew a few of the poets from summer classes who were really great too.


lorre


Jul 6, 2011, 2:35 PM

Post #65 of 67 (2624 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks so much for the reply! It's great to know that living at home is an option. If I end up at BU, that's probably what I'll do.

I have another question or two that maybe you could help me with. First, how is it doing an MFA in 1 year? This is my major worry about the program. I think I would prefer a 2 or a 3 year program, but BU seems perfect in pretty much every other way, so at this point I'm trying to weigh my preferences.

How does tuition work when it comes to summer courses? I haven't found very much specific info about finances in general at BU--how was your experience with that?

Thanks again! And any advice, even if it has nothing to do with my questions, is very much appreciated!


februarystar27


Jul 6, 2011, 4:48 PM

Post #66 of 67 (2616 views)
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Re: [lorre] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

The one-year aspect was the biggest drawback for me too. But, at least in my program, no one finished in just the two semesters alone. About half my class finished in September, I finished in January, and a couple people finished this past May. I took just the two workshops in the fall and the spring and saved the electives for afterward. That seems like a pretty popular choice. I also worked during the program, so there was no way I could take on more than that (playwriting only gets one TA-ship... poets and fiction writers are much more likely to be offered one). The problem is that if you take one or two classes, BU considers you part-time and charges you per credit. If you take more than two, they consider you full-time and charge you for a full courseload (four classes) even if you only take three. Which is ridiculous. The only way you can get around that is usually they allow TA's to take three classes in the spring without extra charge if one of them is the translation seminar (which I've heard wonderful things about, by the way). I was taking a part-time courseload but the facutly signed a form that certified me as full-time, which helps with loan deferrals and things like that. So it helps that you don't need to finish all eight courses by May, but it is also kind of sad when May rolls around and you know there's no more workshops in the summer or next fall. It goes by so fast. My class got really close though, and we formed our own writing group after graduation and meet in the Boston Playwrights' Theatre like before and basically hold class once a month without the professors... it's pretty cool.

As far as summer courses are concerned, they are close to half the price of the regular classes. It's a great way to save money. The only thing is that the offerings can be pretty slim. In my Summer 1, only three courses were available to MFA students, two lit classes and one dramatic lit class at the School of Theater. And two of the classes overlapped each other. Summer 2 had only one course available, and it was on Linguistics in Literature. I had to take that one because I needed to save money, but I would've much preferred to wait and take two courses in the fall if money were less of a concern. As it was, I had gone in with one grad lit course I took the year before BU at UMass, then I did the two workshops in the fall and two in the spring, one elective in Summer 1, another in Summer 2, and one more in the fall. The most common financial aid package appears to be half tuition and a (tiny!!!) stipend, so I only had to pay full price for one course. Overall it wasn't bad financially, and if you were a TA your stipend would be considerably more than the non-TA stipend. Plus poets and fiction writers have more prizes/scholarships available to apply for.

Sorry for writing such a long reply... hopefully this helps! I've heard that Robert Pinsky is great. :) Definitely let me know if you have any other questions.


lorre


Jul 11, 2011, 8:10 AM

Post #67 of 67 (2551 views)
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Re: [februarystar27] BU [In reply to] Can't Post

Wow, thanks for all that!

It sounds like summer classes are definitely worth it.

Do you have to be fluent in second language in order to take the translation seminar? I don't understand quite what the seminar is--when I looked online the seminar seemed to be more like a lecture series, which would also be cool, but maybe I'm looking in the wrong place.

The global fellowships program looks awesome too. Does it seem very competitive to get these fellowships?

I would love to study with Pinsky! I've heard only good things about him as a teacher.

Thanks again for all your info. I will definitely apply to BU, though it won't be for another year and a half. It seems like an unusual program but also a really strong one.

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