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taraberyl



Dec 17, 2009, 3:32 PM

Post #601 of 709 (7878 views)
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Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

er - two other things -

1. yes, zuleika - LOVE hunter's website.

2. i am a little confused about the use of "domestic fiction" in this thread. i understand about the rise of domestic fiction in the 18th/19th centuries, with austen and the brontes etc...but what do you all mean in this context?


mcaten02


Dec 17, 2009, 3:43 PM

Post #602 of 709 (7867 views)
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Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I just had a quick question... (the answer might be here already and I might have missed it). When applications ask for writing samples for fiction and they give the length in pages... so they mean single-spaced or double spaced??

For me it makes a HUGE difference since I am submitting a piece of a novel and the more they have the easier the story is to understand since I really take my time with the plot.


jlgwriter
Jeanne Lyet Gassman
e-mail user

Dec 17, 2009, 3:48 PM

Post #603 of 709 (7863 views)
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Re: [mcaten02] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Definitely double-spaced, unless the application guidelines say otherwise. Reading something single-spaced is a killer on the eyes.

Jeanne
http://www.jeannelyetgassman.com
http://jeannelyetgassman.blogspot.com


http://www.jeannelyetgassman.com
http://jeannelyetgassman.blogspot.com


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 17, 2009, 4:33 PM

Post #604 of 709 (7845 views)
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Re: [taraberyl] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

A question about something most likely unimportant--but do all of you number your pages? If you have more than one story per submission, do you number it from 1-30, or do you start it at 1 for each individual piece?

I ask because some schools state that anything over 30 pages (or 25, etc.) will be discarded. I didn't number my pages for my first few submissions (seeing as the only purpose would be to indicate it was under a certain length) but now wonder if it might be the 'norm.'


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


WanderingTree


Dec 17, 2009, 7:09 PM

Post #605 of 709 (7809 views)
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Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I numbered just b/c I used standard manuscript format but also b/c it would put my mind at ease that the manuscript could still be pieced together if packs of killer seagulls swooped down on English Depts across the country.


edamame40
Ray O

Dec 17, 2009, 7:21 PM

Post #606 of 709 (7798 views)
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Re: [WanderingTree] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I also number mine; I figure, I am used to seeing page numbers when I read stories. Also, what WanderTree said about potential page-disordering acts of God and/or nature!


FreakingOutInBd


Dec 17, 2009, 9:11 PM

Post #607 of 709 (7767 views)
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Re: [mcaten02] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Single spaced is okay if it's poetry.


FreakingOutInBd


Dec 17, 2009, 9:15 PM

Post #608 of 709 (7765 views)
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Re: [edamame40] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I forgot to number my first one (Irvine). But the rest, yes. It makes it easier for the readers, I guess.


WanderingTree


Dec 17, 2009, 9:16 PM

Post #609 of 709 (7765 views)
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Re: [FreakingOutInBd] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Also okay for fiction if the single spacing is part of the "design" of the story.


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 17, 2009, 10:18 PM

Post #610 of 709 (7748 views)
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Re: [taraberyl] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Sending you a PM about this.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


ashleyke


Dec 18, 2009, 2:57 PM

Post #611 of 709 (7682 views)
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Re: [taraberyl] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Wanderingtree, thanks for you help!

And, rue721, VERY valid point that you put rather gracefully. My two friends who aren't applying this but have graciously offered to read for me both honed in on a few points of clarity that were needed before it was finished. In my efforts to get those done, though, I am afraid I've gone through and butchered it by fixing it up wayyy too "neat and tidy". I saved a before and after, so perhaps I should just send it in as-is...thanks for giving me food for thought!


In Reply To
No offense, but maybe you're finding "problems" like this and feeling unproductive because you're actually finished? I have the tendency to "over-fix," too--and it has killed many a piece. If you can't let the stories go yet, maybe a beta-reader at least? Just a friendly thought from a fellow perfectionist :)



ashleyke


Dec 18, 2009, 3:08 PM

Post #612 of 709 (7674 views)
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Re: [ashleyke] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

....and as for the questions about writing samples, I have three stories that are 9, 10 and 12 pages. I always send the nine, and depending on the application I'll add the 10 or 12. I got a late start on the application game, so it's been interesting!


edamame40
Ray O

Dec 18, 2009, 6:12 PM

Post #613 of 709 (7629 views)
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Formatting question [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi all,
Don't want to overthink it, but wondering what rules you go by as far as what info to put at the top of a hard-copy of a writing sample, if the school does not specifically stipulate? I was inclined to just put my name, and "MFA Fiction - Writing Sample" at the top; then I thought I might add my phone number and email just to make it easier for them to contact me from there; added it and did not like the way it looked. Thoughts?


(This post was edited by edamame40 on Dec 18, 2009, 6:13 PM)


taraberyl



Dec 18, 2009, 7:06 PM

Post #614 of 709 (7608 views)
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Re: [edamame40] Formatting question [In reply to] Can't Post

i definitely don't think you'd be penalized one way or another. i have my contact info on the top of each story because that's how each was formatted for submissions to literary journals, and it didn't push me onto the next page, so i left it.
but seriously i think you can do as you please...they have your contact info on file.
(one tip though - i put my last name on the header beside the page number, just in case packets exploded in the mail or their filing cabinets. other people might not like to do this, but i find it helps - my nerves, if nothing else)


KrisB


Dec 22, 2009, 6:24 PM

Post #615 of 709 (7483 views)
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writing sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello all,

Just sent in 4 applications today, finally! I have a question though regarding one that I've yet to submit my recommendations... I submitted the damned online application a couple of weeks ago, with all of the creative materials including the writing sample. Of course, I've revised like hell in the past two weeks. I would love to send the writing sample again (slightly different (better) from what I sent via my online app two weeks ago), but I'm afraid that would look really unprofessional. Am I right or am I right?


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 6:48 PM

Post #616 of 709 (7477 views)
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Re: [KrisB] writing sample [In reply to] Can't Post

It would look bad, but if you truly think it'd help, I'd say go for it.

I applied to only one school last year--different discipline but also required a writing sample. I noticed a time zone error after I had mailed it (a problem of being ahead vs. behind), and mailed a different version right away with an email to the Admissions office. They were very polite about it and told me they'd replace the samples once it arrived.

Perhaps just write and say you noticed a gaff with the writing sample you sent and if they'd allow you to send a revised version.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Dec 23, 2009, 10:45 PM

Post #617 of 709 (7403 views)
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Re: [KrisB] writing sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I also think it would look bad, but I'm no authority on these things.


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.


WanderingTree


Dec 23, 2009, 10:58 PM

Post #618 of 709 (7400 views)
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Re: [KrisB] writing sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Here's my take: Slightly different probably won't make or break you. If your story is strong overall, they'll see that regardless of any changes you've made. Also, I agree it's unprofessional and may draw negative attention to any flaws you do have in your sample.


orthetiger


Dec 25, 2009, 3:23 PM

Post #619 of 709 (7319 views)
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Re: [WanderingTree] writing sample [In reply to] Can't Post

To echo what has already been said: Don't send the update. It may not be as much better as you think (it may be too soon to accurately judge your own work). Unless you've made some huge change, like adding new scenes or something like that, it's not worth it. If that is the case, and these huge changes are a big deal, I would go ahead and tell them that you sent them the "wrong draft" of the paper, rather than specifying that you have since revised it. But... don't do it all.


lostleaf


Feb 27, 2010, 12:17 PM

Post #620 of 709 (6709 views)
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Re: [rue721] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

hi, I'm wondering if there's a standard requirement about the font. Times New Roman? 10? 12? 14? Cornell asked for 12-14 point which seems awfully big to me. I'm an international student; I don't know much about the writing standard in writing samples; things that if some schools don't specifically require then what you would do.
Thanks


writer's block, http://lostleaf328.blogbus.com


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Feb 27, 2010, 12:35 PM

Post #621 of 709 (6702 views)
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Re: [lostleaf] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

You can't go wrong with 12-point Times New Roman (though it's not my favorite).


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.


lostleaf


Feb 27, 2010, 12:41 PM

Post #622 of 709 (6699 views)
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Re: [ericweinstein] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

wow, 12 is kinda big, but then it's what it is. Thanks, Eric.


writer's block, http://lostleaf328.blogbus.com


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Feb 27, 2010, 1:44 PM

Post #623 of 709 (6675 views)
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Re: [lostleaf] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

12 points is the standard for manuscript submission, and it is the standard for MLA academic style, so I would hardly think of it as kinda big.

Of course, I'm an old publishing and academic person, and large chunks of 10-point type are hard for me to read, so I may be prejudiced.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


lostleaf


Apr 9, 2010, 1:51 AM

Post #624 of 709 (5752 views)
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Re: [lostleaf] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

just a quick question. Do the faculty members read your work completely or do they just go through the first few pages and flip through the rest? Say, if your first four pages don't grab them they may never see the rest of the pages? I'm just wondering because it seems that for all the applicants there are it would be an awefully hard job to read all the writing samples thoroughly.


writer's block, http://lostleaf328.blogbus.com


alamana
Jennifer Brown


Apr 9, 2010, 7:22 AM

Post #625 of 709 (5733 views)
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Re: [lostleaf] Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I understand that some read them all the way through quite carefully and some read several pages and flip through the rest. Quite frankly, I don't think it makes any difference.


Be regular and orderly in your life, that you may be violent and original in your work. -- Flaubert

http://www.jenniferkirkpatrickbrown.com

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