16 November 2010

This is a cold war

I've been frantically looking at Creative Writing PhD programs.

Last night after coming home from school I called 16 different colleges- some close, some far. I only talked to one person out of the 15, leaving me with the fantastic impression that colleges are completely done by 5pm. Some apparently even done by four... or three. I called at least three schools in California, where it would have been about 2:30 when I called, and none of the English departments were available to talk to me. The only person I actually spoke to yesterday was a woman I appeared to completely confuse at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. I did learn some important facts though. One- a PhD in Creative Writing at UNL does not require taking the GRE. In fact, neither of the masters degrees I've earned required the GRE either. I think it'd be a little funny if I had a PhD and had never taken the GRE. Two- it costs a lot of money, and they don't offer much other than "extremely competitive" fellowships. I got the impression I'd be admitted, offered no money, and drop out immediately. The woman was also sort of uncooperative. If anything, a little part of me would die if I became a husker anyway, so it just felt right to mentally cross UNL off my potential list. I'd contacted them to begin with because my building principal got her PhD online from them, but this lady let me know straight away that wouldn't be happening for me.

During my conference period this morning one of them called back- a very nice woman from the English department at Western Michigan University. She seemed, at first, to indicate WMU did not have a PhD for Creative Writing, but she had misunderstood me, and they totally do. She said the poetry program (the one I would try for if unable to find a school with a creative non-fiction program I could rock) was extremely competitive. I'm competitive about some aspects of life, and I could make myself be competitive for this if need be. Once we started talking, though, she pointed out that WMU has a PhD in English Education. My first thought was "absolutely not." I have absolutely no interest in earning a PhD that would require me to teach education courses. The woman stopped me, though, and said the program is specifically geared toward teaching English at colleges and wasn't affiliated with their College of Education. It intrigued me to the point that I think I'll email some professors in the program to see what it's all about. Also important- nearly every student in their grad program has complete tuition remission. That'd be awesome.

The moral of this story, though, is that I scoured the internet looking for an online Creative Writing PhD. There isn't one. And now that I've decided that I'm definitely going to do this sometime (what I generally call "getting a wild hair" about something), I've essentially decided I'm definitely going to move sometime. Western Michigan is in Kalamazoo, Michigan (which gets cool points for its name, frankly). The closest program I'm still considering is at Mizzou. The furthest is in Los Angeles. This could potentially be a big move at some point. An expensive move. I'm in the process of consolidating my student loans, and I'm worried they won't defer if I'm in grad school once consolidated. Bahhhhh it's a lot to think about. Just let it be known that I'm completing the steps moving ahead.

Step one- I need to learn a foreign language.


  1. moving?? i hope my children don't forget their uncle :) but seriously...you know we will support you in whatever you do (even though i got a TON of crap for even mentioning moving to minnesota...lol!)

  2. Nice blog! I like your writing way. I'm doing practice GRE here: masteryourgre.com . I hope it's useful for GRE test takers.

  3. They most likely will grant your deferment. I consolidated my loans last year and they were successfully deferred when I started grad school again.

  4. Sarah- who did you go through for consolidation?

  5. Direct Loan Servicing