Re: RARA-AVIS: MFA programs

From: Don Lee (
Date: 06 Mar 2009

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    Well, that's honestly a relief. I felt at the time I'd signed onto a somewhat conservative program, but I was there already and the program did/does have a good rep. One would hope in a sane universe there would be numerous programs less stuck in the past and secure enough in themselves to be open to whatever. I did feel bad for my friend, who in my eyes was a SUCCESS having published at least 3 crime books in hardback for a real publisher, yet still caught crap for writing what he wrote.

    --- On Fri, 3/6/09, Joy Matkowski <> wrote: From: Joy Matkowski <> Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: MFA programs To: Date: Friday, March 6, 2009, 5:47 PM

                That wasn't my experience in novel-writing class. I wrote a rather

    conventional mystery, and others in the class wrote hard-boiled crime

    fiction, science fiction, and a romance, among the majority literary

    types, and the instructor stuck up for our crime fiction. Granted, this

    wasn't Ivy League or MFA, but our instructor was a PEN Faulkner Award

    winner, which is fancy stuff.


    Don Lee wrote:

    > It's true that straight-up lit programs (M.A. and PhD) do allow writing ABOUT genre, since essentially you can use the same critical tools whether you're talking about MOBY DICK or THE MALTESE FALCON, and the Literary Canon was exhausted years ago insofar as subject matter is concerned, but try turning in an SF story, crime, etc., into a workshop, and they just look at you like you put a dead squirrel on the table. It was frustrating.










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