Friday, August 14, 2009

Links of Interest to MFAers

by Jonterri Gadson

Hey all! My car is stuffed and I'm hitting the road in the morning. Here's a few links I've read over the last week or so concerning MFA programs and preparing for them:

Saeed Jones delivers Part Two of his How to Work the Workshop series. Some great tips. I'm sure a lot of us have workshop experience already, but I still found these tips really helpful.

Nancy Rawlinson gives “Writing Advice: The World Doesn’t Give a Rat’s Ass about Your MFA”

Claire Light and Barbara Jane Reyes on the “MFA Industrial Complex” (ummm… Barbara Jane Reyes wrote 2 poetry books while doing her MFA!)

All of these links have helped to get me in a better mindset about entering my program in a few weeks. Feel free to post any links to good reads for us all in the comments or just any info/inspiration/encouragement/tips.

I'll be on the road for the next week. Wahida has admin access to the blog. She can add new contributors or make updates if anyone gets any ideas.

Share your good advice in the comments, please!


  1. I'm old school, so here's a few suggested titles rather than links -- I'm sure some of you encountered these in undergrad, but I find they come in handy from time to time:

    - The Portable Poetry Workshop, by Jack Myers. Chapter 9, on Troubleshooting & Workshops, is particularly good and straightforward. I might recommend this more as a teaching text though, for those of you who have undergrad classes.
    - The Triggering Town, by Richard Hugo. This one will really free you up!
    - The Practice of Poetry, edited by Robin Behn & Chase Twichell. I have to admit, Behn is faculty at VCFA so I might be biased, but wow, does this tidy volume ever do the trick when you've got writer's block!

  2. Thanks Jessie!

    Oooooh, those books sound interesting. I can't wait to make purchases again lol. Thanks for the suggestions, Marita.

  3. JayTee - I read Saeed's post and really liked what he had to say.

    Marita - Thanks for the recs. The Triggering Town is on my wishlist on amazon. Will have to add the others!

  4. I second the Practice of Poetry; it's a very useful reference and I have led small informal workshops with exercises from that book. I also recommend Lewis Turco's Book of Forms, and The Making of a Poem: A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms by Mark Strand and Eavan Boland. This is fun!

  5. Happy traveling JayTee!!!

    And thanks for these great links. I've read some other posts on Saeed Jones' blog, great stuff, and I look forward to checking this one out.

    Everybody, I really am around here, and I'm almost done setting up my new place. Posts are broiling away in my brain. You can contact me directly at foundinfiction [at] blogspot [dot] com with any concerns, or for that matter, elbow me on facebook : )

    Good luck to everyone who's jumping right in this week!


Related Posts with Thumbnails