Recently there have been several comments and questions about genre-friendly and experimental-friendly MFA programs. Do they exist? Which ones are known for promoting that type of work? Etc. So I thought I would create a thread to open this up for discussion.
Experimental writing is a no-brainer, Brown and many other schools promote it, but I often see people wonder if “genre writing” is accepted at MFA programs. In my experience, it is. I’ve had sci-fi, horror and crime novels in workshop. Of course, maybe there is a question of what we mean by “genre writing.” Are we talking about Stephen King, Isaac Asimov and Robert Jordan or are we talking about Cormac McCarthy, Jonathan Lethem and Aimee Bender? The latter is certainly welcome in many programs, but what about the former?
My one piece of advice would be to look at the faculty and recent alumni of a program. If your program has produced writers in the realm you want to be in, that is a very good sign. If your program has faculty writing things similar to what you want to write then there is a good chance many your classmates will be familiar with what you are aiming for.
Other advice? Thoughts?