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Elliott E.

Creative Writing MFA – What do you write?

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Hi everyone!

I saw that Ohio State started sending out acceptances already :0 but the rest of us still have at least a month or two to wait. It's my first time applying to MFA programs and I was curious––what do y'all like to write about? What kind of work did you put in your samples (because I'm pretty sure we all worry about sending in something too cliché lol)?

I personally enjoy writing coming-of-age stories that are a bit surreal/whimsical ?and queer––of course.

 

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Yep. Coming of age stories here too and lesbian themed writing.

My current portfolio has a few stories of freshmen in college, women using a sperm bank for the first time, and some retrospectives. Lots of holiday-themed writing as well. :)

I also like to incorporate a surreal element when I can.

Edited by Writer M

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Cool! I could only fit 1-2 stories in my writing samples, since mine tend to run a little long for the page limits ?

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Another queer writer here, hi! I varied my WS a little bit by school, a couple I did one short story and a novel chapter, the others two short stories. 

The short stories are both experimental in form, themes of loss, queerness, sisters, and coming of age, but in a left-field way. The novel is fantastical realism with themes of otherness, created family, and power dynamics.  

I'm only applying within NYC. 

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@K8* That's so cool! My original plan a year or two ago was to mostly apply to NYC schools (small queer, big dreams lol) but that turned out to not be financially feasible. But I'm happy with the schools I applied to in the West & Mid-West. The biggest city school I applied to is in Chicago which sounds both exciting and intimidating since I grew up in smaller towns. 

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@Ellis Nice! There's so many great programs across the country, and NYC is stupidly expensive. I already live here and my wife's job is here so I need to stay in the city, but if I don't get in this round, we may start looking further afield. Chicago's a fun city and DePaul's great-- I think one of my old English profs was an alum. 

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For any poets reading this thread, I'd recommend demonstrating some skill with meter/rhyme in at least a couple of your poems. I wish I had worked with that more when I was younger because it's been my biggest improvement since starting my MFA at WKU, and my free verse poetry has benefited from better understanding rhythm and sound.

Btw, WKU's application deadline is February 1st, so there's still time to apply. Fully-funded, two years, and an emphasis on giving you employable skills that a lot of other MFAs are lacking. I'm getting my MFA, teaching freshman composition, and getting a graduate certificate in TESL. Consider applying! 

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