Friday, July 20, 2007
I'm very sorry about neglecting the update of my database. I'm behind now and completion of the task will have to be pushed back to the end of August rather than the end of July. I'm spending the summer at Bryn Mawr, helping to evaluate manuscripts for the Hidden River Arts fiction contest, juggling various writing projects, and working on a dissertation that involves interviews with Philadelphia poets within and outside the academy.
So, that thing about my "posting weekly notices about writing contests, writers' retreats, arts festivals, literary journals, and other resources for writers"? Forget that. I think that's REALLY easy to find out about on one's own; one message from me per week isn't going to make much of anything for anyone. Just check out Poets & Writers Magazine, the AWP Website... writers' forums... you'll find more than you'll ever need to know.
Right then. So why not let the topic of this post be: Why I am not applying to grad school? I'll be brutally honest. The answer is that I simply don't have a chance of getting in at this point in my life. I have little work experience and my writing isn't mature enough; I need to work on these for a couple years in order to be a much stronger MFA candidate later on. Furthermore, I'm really tired of studying and would appreciate a two-year break. And preparing for the GRE is torture. Last of all, taking time off school to work will help me build up my bank funds from just a few thousand (which is all I've had in college) to tens of thousands, which greatly enlarges the range of programs I can apply to, and will make colleges less likely to recoil from me--if they see that first-year tuition will wipe out all your funds, they'll probably still be open to giving you financial aid if your application looks good, but if your funds don't even equal one tenth of first year tuition... well, the app's probably more likely to get chucked in the trash.
How long have others been out of school before applying to programs?