Julie’s MFA Program in Books (Favorites in Parentheses)

  I don’t have an MFA. I have a masters….in education administration. Occasionally, I will wonder if I shouldn’t do some kind of low-residency program, just to see what-all I don’t know. But that sounds depressing, not to mention time-consuming. How many Raymond Carver short stories can a person read in one lifetime? Probably a lot.   As far as I know, they don’t offer MFA degrees in upmarket women’s…

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An Eloquent Defense of Writing Degrees (Not Written By Kimmery)

This week’s topic is “MFA and Writing Classes” and I’ve got precious little to say here. It’s probably glaringly apparent I don’t have an MFA or a graduate degree in writing. I’ve taken no writing classes either, although I have signed up for a few sessions at various conferences. When it comes to writing, I’m an autodidact. I’m also fond of doing things the hard way: I don’t outline, pre-plot,…

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Writing Programs, MFAs, and What to do if You Can’t Afford Any of Them

When I started writing in a serious, dedicated way, I had 95 undergrad credits and three active student loans. I didn’t have a bachelor’s degree or an MFA and had never been to a writers’ workshop,  but I believed in my stories. As a gift, my parents paid for me to take a week-long writing workshop at the Chautauqua Institution, and more importantly, volunteered to babysit my boys (one of…

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If only the Internet gave out (legitimate) MFAs

I do not have an MFA, and I’ve barely taken any writing classes. Oh, there were a few in high school and undergrad — my book is actually dedicated to my high school creative writing teacher — but when I think about my development as a writer, those aren’t the experiences I think about. No. Instead, I think about what might be the writers’ equivalent to the school of hard…

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Latest News

[News Flash] April 22, 2018

Congratulations to @KateRockLitChik, winner of our #DebBallGiveaway of Meg Wolitzer’s THE FEMALE PERSUASION.   Thank you so much to yesterday’s guest, Kelly de Dos! If you haven’t already, check out her wonderful essay, The Wrong Kind of Fat Girl and retweet to share the love: The Wrong Kind of Fat Girl. An Essay by @kdevosauthor. https://t.co/Y1dC1akEIw pic.twitter.com/3XXIq6Ox9Y — The Debutante Ball (@DebutanteBall) April 21, 2018   News from the 2018 Debs:   Kaitlyn Sage Patterson…

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From Unseen Fire: A Triumph

As a writer of fantasy, I am thoroughly impressed with the incredible storytelling, research, and imagination that it took for Cass Morris to construct From Unseen Fire. So often, historical fantasy focuses on the machinations of men. Not so here, From Unseen Fire sings the song of powerful, ambitious women taking their due. I am so impressed by the way Morris managed to use the framework of a Roman-esque society to tell…

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Cass’s Literary Debut…and it’s Incredible

  From Unseen Fire is a literary blend of historical fiction and fantasy that will blow your mind. The city of Aven is so richly imagined, no detail goes unfinished. Cass has filled every corner of this world until it practically breathes. There is political intrigue, love, revenge and redemption. And while there is a strong argument to be made for Cass’s gift in writing her secondary characters so well…

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Big and Beautiful: From Unseen Fire

FROM UNSEEN FIRE is a big, luscious, complex book, the kind that makes you want to wall yourself off from the world in your most comfortable pajamas with a cup of something warm and sweet to drink. Some books you skim through, racing to reach the denouement; others, like this novel, are immersion reads, so full-fledged and epic you are a bit startled to find yourself in your own world…

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