Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Things I Learned at my First MFA Residency

Ten days on an island with one hundred writers? Yeah, I learned some things.

Name, semester and genre are the equivalent of name, rank and serial number. Meet, greet, repeat.

Daisy, first semester, non-fiction.

Big siblings are the best. Even when they break a foot, they still look out for you.

You have to get up pretty early in the morning to get a hot shower in before breakfast.
Do NOT go near the sea wall. 

Chuck Johnson is not who you think he is.

If you have a question, best to ask Mother Hastings.

You can get up at 10:00am to jump in the water on New Year's Day, or you can get up at 10:30am and run down to the water in time to watch your classmates do it.

It is possible to get a nap in somewhere between meals, seminars, workshops and readings.

Photo by Erin Corriveau
Getting up in front of a large group of writers to read my work is still scary, but not impossible. 

Writing is a solitary act, but being in an MFA program is not. There is always someone to talk with, confide in, ask questions of and receive answers from, beginning at breakfast and lasting well into the evening social time.  When the residency is over and everyone has gone home, we're still encouraging each other.

I'm a writer.


Elizabeth Hilts said...

Yes, you are.

Donna said...

Name, rank and serial number ... I love it!

A writer.
And always a member of the larger community.

Nice post!

Ioanna said...

Love this, Daisy. You make a wonderful contribution to that community.

Kate said...

I'm Kate, first semester, fiction. And I think you're the bee's knees.

ia said...

YES YOU ARE! And simply wonderful! the moon & back.

Anonymous said...

You have a true gift. I have no doubt that the world will soon be lining up in book stores to get an autographed copy of your first novel. Write on and on.