Thursday, August 6, 2009

MFA Residency: Day Five

Well, this morning was a brutal critique workshop in creative non-fiction - something I am woefully unfamiliar with - and apparently it showed in my essay. But I got a lot of good advice and suggestions and if I decide I ever want to revise the essay, I'll have a good idea how to do it.

Later this afternoon we had peer workshops where we shared a few pages of something we've written with our genre-specific peers. After the whipping my work took this morning, I wasn't really looking forward to another soul-baring, but this time, since it was my primary genre (something I actually do better), the feedback was much better. Thank goodness. No matter how hard we try not to be, we writers are a sensitive bunch (I'm sure you can relate). Our feelings get hurt easily.

The rest of the day was free and I spent it writing syllabi for my courses. This program is very self-directed. Students work with their mentors to design the courses to fit their goals, including reading and writing to be done based on what they wish to accomplish. Because of the self-directed nature of the coursework, we have to write our own syllabi to be approved by our mentors and the program director. So I spent the day researching appropriate reading material and writing syllabi.

Now I'm going to relax for the evening, consider story ideas for a novel (or a screenplay - I can't decide which I want to write for my thesis), then watch the season finale of So You Think You Can Dance.

More tomorrow!


Midlife Jobhunter said...

Thick skin required during critiques. Remember you are there to get better and if people can't be honest with you, what is the point? And a good rule of thumb - if one person tells you something, hmhmhm. If two tell you the same thing, well, think about it. If three do, you might consider they are right. And give to another party to be sure.

I'm so jealous. I would love to go back to school for my MFA, but with one boy finishing up this next year out of state, another headed out next year, and still recovering from the first one graduating last year, there is no money for me. Thanks for letting me go vicariously with you.

Cheryl said...

Whew! I'm sorry I haven't been here in like a few days - wow, you've been busy! I just read through your whirlwhind of a week. What a dream opportunity, to be surrounded by writers, mentors and all that creativity! It doesn't sound easy but it does sound like you're in your element. I'm so happy for you1