I earned my MFA, now what?


Hello!
It has been quite a while since I’ve posted anything and I am sorry. I graduated from my MFA program mid-December and with the holidays and all, I am barely feeling like I am returning to my normal (my version of normal anyway) self. I have been writing this post in my head for quite a while and there are a lot of things I want to talk about so I will try to keep this as organized as possible.

The Sycamores!
Well, as I just mentioned, I graduated! Yay for me as well as the rest of the amazing writers that were in my cohort, the Sycamores. It was a very difficult journey but one I would gladly do over and over again. I feel like I spent a lot of the two year program catching up to things I should have known before I entered the program and now that I am done, I want to do it all over so I can do it right. But, alas, my budget will not allow that so here I am. A writer, very much at the start of my writing life and not sure what the hell comes next. Which leads me to…
The writing… I have completed very little since the end of my program. I am trying not to feel bad for this since I am a very slow when it comes to the writing process. What I have done is received my first rejection on a submission and attempted my first foray into the flash fiction world. On the note of the rejection, I was quite happy with it (after a small bit of moping). On a realistic level, I do not expect my first few submissions to be accepted. I do still have two submissions out there in the ether, waiting for acceptance or rejection. On a more mental in my head note, it made me feel like I am an actual writer now. Something about getting rejected makes you feel like you’re in some kind of exclusive club. As to my current projects, I am writing two short stories before I move on to writing my first novel. We shall see how that turns out but for now I have ridiculously high levels of optimism about it. Which leads me to…
What I expect out of myself over the next six months or so… Aside from complete the two short stories in full and a complete first draft of the novel, there is a lot coming up for me. In early March I will be traveling to Boston for the AWP convention. I had a blast last year in Chicago and now that I know what to expect, I hope that I can get even more out of the conference this time. I am also going to establish a better work ethic when it comes to writing as well as improving my punctuation skills. I probably shouldn’t admit that out loud but truth is truth and I over comma the hell out of everything and I need to write more. Even when a headache is threatening to explode out of my skull like Athena out of Zeus. Also, according to spell check on Word, I use fragments out the arse. On this blog, I write how I talk and apparently I do not talk very well. Coming back to the point, I will also be putting more effort into this blog, figuring out how to build an author platform (in the technical sense, not the carpentry sense), completing the most kick ass zombie screenplay with a friend of mine and reading my mental ass off. Which leads me to…
The Blog!! This blog! I have two very awesome pieces of fiction from two amazingly talented writers coming up within the next week or two. I am trying to work up the courage to approach a few artists I have in mind for interviews.
**QUICK SUBMISSION CALL: Please people, send me your work! I want to post your work! Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction, YA, Poetry, Op-Ed, Flash Fiction, anything! I want to use what platform, teeny-tiny as it may be, I have to show work that other amazing people that are out there! Also, if you know of anyone that would be a good fit for an interview, send me an email and let me know. I want writers, singers, musicians, actors, directors, tattooists, sculptors, fashion people, makeup artists, anything you think would inspire. I want to know them!
Okay, I’m back. Hmm, what else did I want to talk about? Oh yes, I am trying to kill someone. Wait, don’t call the cops yet! I want to kill that voice in my head that is constantly putting me down. This voice is called doubt and he is an asshole. It has been on my mind lately and might be the whole point of a future blog post if I can be a little more articulate on the matter. Briefly though, everyone has or has had this voice in some form in their head. It is destructive and I will no longer accept that I cannot do anything about this. Doubt, you have been warned. Which leads me to…
…Lunch Ticket, Antioch’s literary journal. I am happy and lucky to be serving as Art Editor for the third issue. There is not much for me to say except to keep checking in on Lunch Ticket updates and to go to the site, www.lunchticket.org to send in your submissions.
Well I think I will wrap this up for now. I promise to try to be more coherent in the future and to not write coffee fueled blog posts as much. In the next week I should have some fiction submissions to post so for now, adios!
Ashley
FacebookTwitterRSS Feed