»

Subscribe | Give a Gift Subscription

Log In or Register | Help | Contact Us | Donate

Advanced Search

Main Index » Writing and Publishing » MFA Programs
Writing Sample
Edit your profilePrivate messages Search postsWho's online?
You are not signed in. Click here to sign in.
If you are not a member, Register here!
138648 registered users
First page Previous page 1 ... 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 Next page Last page  View All


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Jul 10, 2013, 12:35 PM

Post #701 of 710 (7579 views)
Shortcut
Re: [alamana] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I think that before you commit yourself to applying to an MFA program you should write a whole lot more fiction. Read a lot, write a lot, then start getting a feel for what it would be like to do that for two years.

Bear in mind that admission to most MFA programs will have very little to do with your undergraduate grades, and a great deal to do with your writing sample.


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/


alamana
Jennifer Brown


Jul 10, 2013, 1:34 PM

Post #702 of 710 (7574 views)
Shortcut
Re: [notthatcreativearewe] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

It isn't really my business, but I have to confess that I am very curious about why someone who has never written any fiction before (aside from something written last week that was "a thousand words long and not very good") would decide to pursue fiction writing at the grad level . . .


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

http://www.jenniferkirkpatrickbrown.com


notthatcreativearewe
Greg Ongao

Jul 10, 2013, 3:45 PM

Post #703 of 710 (7564 views)
Shortcut
Re: [alamana] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Its a fair question and one that's hard to explain really. The desire stems mostly from a disappointment with philosophy. Studying philosophy for the past three years i've basically been preparing myself for a career as an academic. However, I've found that its far too esoteric and its emphasis on abstractions, though cultivating, fails to strike a chord. The philosophers and writers that I admire have been the ones who have been able to take those abstractions and give them concrete life. Here I refer to Kierkegaard, Dostoeyvsky, de Unamuno, Camus, and to a lesser extent Sartre. The first time I read The Brother Karamazov or San Manuel Bueno, I felt that I understood the philosophy that I was studying much better than in the classroom. A quote from The Myth of Sisyphus (the Bible for all dilettantes, I know, but bear with me) perhaps explains it much better than I can: "Existence is illusory or it is eternal. if Dostoevsky were satisfied with this inquiry, he would be a philosopher. But he illustrates the consequences that such intellectual pastimes may have in a man's life, and in this regard he is an artist." I guess this is where I want to take my stand.


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Jul 10, 2013, 3:54 PM

Post #704 of 710 (7561 views)
Shortcut
Re: [notthatcreativearewe] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

So instead of preparing yourself for a career as an academic, you'll prepare yourself for a career as a postal carrier. That's way less abstract, I'll agree.


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/


notthatcreativearewe
Greg Ongao

Jul 10, 2013, 4:08 PM

Post #705 of 710 (7559 views)
Shortcut
Re: [pongo] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I sense irony...but if you were looking for some humorous alternative to highlight the near worthlessness of an MFA or to just peg me down a notch (seeing as from your previous posts that you've taken it upon yourself to be the defender of the hallowed craft of writing from posers and dilettantes) surely you could have thought of something better? maybe lets say...baker? you are writer I assume, aren't you?


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Jul 10, 2013, 4:15 PM

Post #706 of 710 (7557 views)
Shortcut
Re: [notthatcreativearewe] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm a full-time poet now, but only because I'm retired from editing and teaching. Teaching paid a lot less than editing, and you said you didn't want to go into academia anyway. I'm just warning you not to expect to make a living from writing.

And since I don't think of writing as hallowed in any way, I find it hard to believe I defended it as such. But if you'd rather be a baker, good for you. The world needs good bakers more than it needs another MFA in novels. (I have one of those, so I know something of what I'm talking about there.)


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/


notthatcreativearewe
Greg Ongao

Jul 10, 2013, 4:35 PM

Post #707 of 710 (7554 views)
Shortcut
Re: [pongo] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

This is why I despise both sarcasm/irony and lack of clarity in writing. I worked myself up to a boil for no reason. If you wish to give advice please be direct, as you were in your response post. I'm well aware of the financial non-rewards of life as a writer, but academia is a bore and the professional world is deadening, if the alternative means poverty then its an alternative i'm more than glad to embrace!


alamana
Jennifer Brown


Jul 10, 2013, 4:46 PM

Post #708 of 710 (7553 views)
Shortcut
Re: [notthatcreativearewe] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

You asked for direct, so I will try to be direct:

I just graduated from a relatively large MFA program in 2012 and the folks I graduated with are taking jobs at the mall, both in retail and in restaurants. (They would probably climb over dead bodies for a good government job like postal carrier. Oh! True story: one of my closest friends from high school got an undergrad degree in philosophy and religion and he has, for many years, worked for the post office as a mail carrier. He loves it.) The lucky ones from my MFA program are teaching English comp as adjuncts at community colleges, and they are making less than minimum wage once you add in prep time and grading time. No benefits. No job security. Lots of bitterness. You say you are more than glad to embrace poverty, but, let me tell you, one doesn't usually feel that way for long once the poverty sets in.

I don't mean to be patronizing but you realize that you have about zero chance of making enough money as a writer to avoid other work, right? And that almost all of the successful literary writers are also academics because they need to eat, right? I don't know why I'm not used to it yet, but I am still shocked whenever I encounter beginners (for the record I would consider myself a beginner) who think they are going to type up something brilliant and win a Pulitzer and be rich; they think that they are special, that they are the next Hemingway. Sorry, I have been given reason to be irritated in this department today, reason that has nothing to do with this forum--I'll climb down off my high horse now.

At any rate, buy those anthologies and try to figure out why the stories work. Don't let it kill you if you don't get into a program on the first try. The odds are very much against you.


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

http://www.jenniferkirkpatrickbrown.com


notthatcreativearewe
Greg Ongao

Jul 10, 2013, 5:11 PM

Post #709 of 710 (7546 views)
Shortcut
Re: [alamana] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

The naivety in me is much more obvious to see than I hoped, granted I haven't really tried to hide it. I don't care too much about writing a masterpiece, my intention in pursuing an MFA is to learn how to write like a writer. What i'll pursue after that is a bridge too far to see. Poverty was too strong a word to use, what i mean really is that if frugal living is whats necessary to make writing primary in my life in whichever capacity, then i'll take it. If i find that its not primary then i'll give it up...i suppose i didn't really need to write a further defense of myself, but i have the sinking feeling that i haven't accounted for myself too well so far.


eclat


Aug 18, 2014, 7:49 PM

Post #710 of 710 (2885 views)
Shortcut
Re: [alamana] Poetry Writing Sample [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello!

I'm an amateur poet and I’ve been working on my writing sample. Here’s my problem: I would love to have my manuscript reviewed and be able to work on the rusty bits. But, I’m from India and going to workshops here to meet fellow writers and hear what they have to say is pretty much out of the question. I've spoken to professors, but they haven't been very helpful. The MFA is something I really want to do, but, I feel completely lost, being the only person reviewing my own work, not knowing whether I’m completely off the mark or not. I would love for you guys to offer me advice, in any form, that will help me make it through.

Thank you so much!


(This post was edited by eclat on Aug 18, 2014, 7:54 PM)

First page Previous page 1 ... 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 Next page Last page  View All

Main Index » Writing and Publishing » MFA Programs

 


P&W Newsletters

Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter to stay informed of the latest news, events and more.

Click to Sign Up

Subscribe to P&W Magazine | Donate Now | Advertise | Sign up for E-Newsletter | About Us | Contact Us

© Copyright Poets & Writers 2011. All Rights Reserved