All posts tagged: rejection

Gionni Ponce Introduction (Indiana University ‘19)

Image: Joey Lax-Salinas More aptly titled: How I Failed My Way into MFA Candidacy. This fall, I’ll begin Indiana University’s creative writing MFA program in fiction. It’s a fully funded program that will cover the cost of my tuition, insurance, and provide me with a teaching stipend to pay my rent and buy food. IU’s program has consistently been ranked the Top 15 in the nation and is known for supporting a diverse student body. In short, this is a HUGE blessing that is allowing me to work towards a lifestyle I’ve wanted since I was 13. Summed up like that, as any social media post might be, it really sounds like I have my shit together, right? Whatta joke. Even as I sit on my new bed in southern Indiana, writing this post and putting off prepping for my first day of class tomorrow, I feel a sense of disconnect. How can someone who made so many mistakes still end up in such a good place? I don’t want to add to the toxicity …

I’m working on it.

Image: Ignacio B. Peña I’m done, yaay!! Wait, I’m done? That can’t be right. Okay so I’m not done-done. I still have a little under four months to start and finish a creative dissertation project (i.e. a novella), and then I’m done. But as for the taught portion of the Creative Writing program here at the University of Edinburgh, I’ve attended all of my classes, workshops, and seminars; I’ve read the last of the required novels of the course; I’ve handed in my final literature essay and creative portfolio for the term. The “structured” portion of the course is now behind me. From here, I am left to my own devices. And while I feel currently stalled in figuring out the story that feels right for the novella I will be dedicated to over the next few months (I’m working on it), I’ve been left with a lot of time to reflect on the the course itself and what it is I set out to do in the first place, and what my future as …

Where Did You End Up? 2016

Image: Chris Campbell Now that April 15th has come and gone, let us know where you’ll be headed in the fall! Or if you’ll be pursuing other opportunities, reapplying again, etc. Also, feel free to leave any questions you have about starting your MFA or reapplying. We’ll do our best to answer them. Don’t forget we’re taking first year contributor applications until June 1st. You must be starting your MFA or creative writing MA in the fall to apply.

REJECTED: The Five Stages of Post-Application Season Grief

Photo credit: Caro Wallis You did your research (or didn’t). You perfected your sample (or didn’t). You sought out recommenders that knew your work well (or didn’t). Okay, you get the idea. Whether you feel like you gave this MFA application season your all or felt like you shortchanged yourself, if you didn’t end up getting into a program you wanted (or a program at all), you may be feeling pretty down right now. For those of you who may have a fuzzy, nonexistent back-up plan, I crowd-sourced a few of our favorite MFA Years bloggers for their own advice re: moving on during the gap year(s). The following is what I call The Five Stages of Post-Application Season Grief, a combination of my own and others’ thoughts on this dark, dark period. I’m sure many of you have more or fewer stages than I list here, completely different stages altogether, or no stages at all (cue meme with little cartoon dog on fire). TL:DR? You’re going to be okay. Stage One: “I suck and …

So You’re Waiting to Hear Back from MFA Programs: Post Application Advice With Lauren Sharkey

Image credit: Selbe Lynn For the next two months we’ll be asking some of our first year contributors to talk about the post application period and how they dealt with it last year. What did you do to get through the post application period? I definitely struggled through the post application period.  In all honesty, I think the waiting is the hardest part.  At least the writing you can control. The admissions process is unfair in that it is not a synchronized event.  Acceptances, rejections, and wait list notifications go out at different time intervals.  Some say it’s alphabetical, but the truth is that no one really knows when you’re going to hear or why.  My advice would be to avoid forums like GradCafe and MFA Draft on Facebook.  Seeing live updates will drive you to insanity.  Unless you have a letter, e-mail, or phone call, do not lose hope.  Believe in yourself.  Trust your work. What’s the best piece of advice you received about applying? “Keep the faith, Lauren.  This is a journey.  Journeys are inherently …

Next Year

by Lara Prescott It’s mid-February and you haven’t seen an acceptance yet. You’re checking Facebook ten (OK, twenty) times a day for word on acceptances. You’ve resorted to Googling people who’ve gotten in so you can compare your work to theirs. You’ve succumbed to Grad Café rumors. On the day you get rejected from Michigan, you lock yourself out of the house and have to walk barefoot in your pajamas down an iced-over sidewalk in a town you hate to fetch a locksmith. It can’t get any worse. But it does. March brings a smattering of more rejections and you call your mother to tell her that you’re just not good enough. She feels your pain, and tells you so, but wonders why you’d want to go back to school in your 30s in the first place, which she doesn’t tell you. In April, you get accepted to a school you can’t afford. It feels good for a minute. Then you do the math. On the day you receive your final rejection—from a school that misspells …