View Full Version : Need reassurance, pretty please?

Mystic Blossom
03-02-2010, 05:38 AM
So, this is about graduate school. I foolishly decided to apply for an MFA in creative writing, right out of undergrad (I just graduated in December). I really, really want to go to grad school, but I've slowly come to realize that not getting in is not a terrible or even bad thing, nor does it mean that I'm a bad writer or that I won't find success.

I'm going to know sometime this month whether I got into the majority of schools that I signed up for. Most of them are ridiculously competitive programs, but I have no idea what I'm up against. If I don't get in, it will suck, completely, but I have a feeling I'll be okay. It's the waiting that's slowly destroying me. I'm pretty sure all the stress has actually raised my blood pressure.

So I need words from fellow writers. I've turned to other grad school applicants (in various fields) for help, but they're just as stressed and competitive and don't tend to be an incredibly supportive crowd. I don't need false promises, I just need words, true words, that will help get me through the night. Because no matter what the results are, I still have a life to live, and I'm so crazy because of all of this I feel like I'll break down during work.

Please help! I would be so, so grateful. ;_;

03-02-2010, 06:53 AM
Well, one thing to remember is that if you don't get in, you can still be a writer. Whereas if your friends gets dinged from every law school or med school, they can forget about being lawyers or doctors.

Waiting is miserable and unavoidable. The best advice is the same that writers give each other when waiting to hear from agents or editors: Write something. Try to write what you would want to write if you got into that MFA program of dreams. And then you'll be in a great position whether you get in or not.

03-02-2010, 07:13 AM
Take a deep breath. Suck in so much air it feels like your lungs couldn't possibly take in any more, and then let it out slowly.

As much as I agree with kellion that you should write, try doing something you don't do that often. When I was stressing out about agents and such, I didn't write. I'm the kind of person that writes a lot every day, and taking the chance to slow down really helped me.

Try going out. Go to the park, go for a drive, do something you love that you don't do that often.

Most of all, take it slow. From this point, you have no control if you get in or if you don't. So just enjoy yourself and make the best of your life as it is.

Mystic Blossom
03-02-2010, 07:23 AM
You know, both are helpful. I always get very antsy if I haven't written a bit, but since all my applications have been written and submitted almost entirely on the computer, getting away from it for a bit is helpful too. I'm less stressed when I'm out at the movies, or shopping, or just doing something that gets me away from the computer screen. You guys are awesome, and thank you.

03-03-2010, 01:25 PM
Oh man, I know how that goes. I got turned down by a few programs, the one I really wanted in particular. And honestly, despite some of the bumps in the road, I wouldn't be where I am today if I hadn't gone to the one I did go to, so I'm thankful for that. Life rarely turns out the way we plan, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. ;)

Anyway, as for the waiting, I agree just to get out and do something. Work out (good stress relief), read, get out of the house for awhile. A lot of it is just about finding things to keep your mind off it, and really that's not too hard to do. :)

Mystic Blossom
03-03-2010, 07:16 PM
I know what you mean, kaitie. I got rejected from my first choice for undergrad and it was just awful at the time. But the place I ended up going to was so amazing, and if I had gone to my first choice I would have certainly gotten a different kind of education (whether it would be better is certainly debatable), but I would also have an absolute mountain of uncontrollable debt, either that or uncomfortable obligations to family members. I've grown to realize that everything happens for a reason, and if I get in, don't get in this year, it'll only be for the best.

03-03-2010, 09:37 PM
just keep writing kiddo

03-05-2010, 09:13 AM
As a fellow MFA applicant, I agree that this is a killer month! Your decision to apply straight out of undergrad wasn't foolish at all, though; I wish I had done that, rather than waiting a year. Still, you have plenty of options if you don't get in.

You can save up money and work on your publishing credits, for one thing. The year out of school can also give you perspective on your career and writing goals. If you use that time to your advantage, you will only be a sharper candidate in the next round of applications.

But for right now, do what you must to relax. As Poppy said, you can't do anything more to affect the application process now -- and that lack of control is really difficult. (I know it is for me, at least! ;)) That's part of life. I just keep reminding myself that though this is the path I want, it isn't the only one I can take.

Best of luck, MB. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!