Events

I Applied To MFAs: What’s Next? Panel

The Workshop will be hosting a *free* I Applied To MFAs: What’s Next? panel for MFA applicants (as well as any of you out there who sat out this cycle, but are thinking of applying down the line) on Sunday, March 14th from 4-5:30PM Eastern.

Our panelists are graduates in poetry, fiction, CNF, and hybrid-genre writing from the University of Alabama, Brown, Cornell, Indiana University, Northern Michigan University, UNC-Wilmington, and Warren Wilson. Members of The Workshop team with MFAs from OSU and CU Boulder will also be in the chat helping answer questions, and the event will be spearheaded by returning moderator Eshani Surya (U of Arizona). We’ll be answering questions on how to proceed once you’ve heard back from your programs, no matter your results. 

You can access our free registration here.
You can also stay in the loop by RSVPing to the I Applied To MFAs: What’s Next? panel Facebook event.


Ask your anonymous MFA application questions here.
PLEASE NOTE: We will do our best to answer as many questions asked as possible. However, out of respect for the time and energy of our panel and moderators, The Workshop cannot guarantee that we will be able to respond to all submitted questions during the I Applied to MFAs: What’s Next? Panel itself.

PLEASE ALSO NOTE: While we understand that questions pertaining to racism and toxic competition within MFA programs are real and serious concerns, and want to acknowledge the racism and toxic competition endemic to the academy, this panel is unfortunately not an appropriate forum for such a discussion given its public nature, especially as our panelists are early career and still rely on their program connections, particularly their former professors, for book blurbs and letters of recommendation to fellowships, awards, writing conferences, jobs, etc. You may wish to join a moderated Facebook group like POC Draft or check out this list of faculty of color from de-canon.

Agenda

4:00-5:00 p.m. Topics presentation and preplanned questions
5:00-5:30 p.m. Q&A

Moderator

Photo of writer Eshani Surya.

Eshani Surya

Eshani Surya is a fiction writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming in [PANK], Catapult, Paper Darts, Joyland, and Literary Hub, among others. Eshani is also a flash fiction reader at Split Lip Magazine. She holds an MFA from the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Find Eshani on Twitter posting as @__eshani or at her website, eshani-surya.com.

Panelists

Krys Malcolm Belc

Krys Malcolm Belc is the author of the memoir The Natural Mother of the Child (Counterpoint), forthcoming in June. He has also written a chapbook of flash nonfiction, In Transit (The Cupboard Pamphlet) and his essays have appeared in Granta, The Rumpus, Black Warrior Review, and elsewhere. Krys lives in Philadelphia with his partner and their three children and works as an Education Coordinator in the Cancer Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Find Krys on Twitter posting as @krysmalcolmbelc, on Instagram @krysbelc, or at his website, krysmalcolmbelc.com.

Soleil Davíd

Soleil Davíd moved from the Philippines to the United States at age 17. Her work has appeared in Arkansas International, MARY, Cream City Review, and The Margins, among others. She received a BA from UC Berkeley and an MFA from Indiana University, where she served as Poetry Editor of Indiana Review. Davíd has received support from PEN America, VONA, and Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference. She lives in Washington, DC.

Find Soleil on Twitter @SoleilLoquy or on Instagram @thedoorajar.

A. J. Gnuse

A. J. Gnuse (UNC-Wilmington) is the author of GIRL IN THE WALLS, forthcoming May 2021 with Ecco. A native of New Orleans, he lives in Texas.

Find A.J. on Twitter/Instagram as @ajgnuse, or on his website at ajgnuse.com.

Shakarean Hutchinson

Shakarean (Cornell) is a writer from the Lowcountry of SC. Her work has been published in Joyland Magazine and The Missouri Review.

Find Shakarean on Twitter/Instagram as @sambria, or on her website at shakareanhutchinson.com.

Cat Ingrid Leeches

Cat Ingrid Leeches is a writer, editor, and adjunct. They currently live in East Dallas. Their work has appeared in Passages North, Mid-American Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, and other journals. They have a chapbook, THE CONNOISSEUR (Garden-Door Press), and a cat named Dirtbike. Find them on Twitter @Lizard_Eyes.

You can also find Cat on their website, catingridleeches.com.

Julia Madsen

Julia Madsen is a first-gen writer, scholar, and educator. She earned an MFA in Literary Arts from Brown University and a PhD in English/Creative Writing from the University of Denver. Her first book, The Boneyard, The Birth Manual, A Burial: Investigations into the Heartland (Trembling Pillow Press), was listed on Entropy’s Best Poetry Books of 2018. Her hybrid chapbook, “Home Movie, Nowhere,” was published with DIAGRAM/New Michigan Press this year.

Find Julia on Twitter @madddsense, Instagram @madsense, or on her website at www.juliamadsen.com.

Shelley Senai

Shelley Senai is a recent graduate of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and currently serves as the assistant fiction editor at Raleigh Review. Her work can be found in Citron Review and Reservoir. In 2018, she received an emerging artist award from the St. Botolph Club Foundation in Boston. She resides outside of Boston with her husband and two young children, and is currently finishing her first novel.

Find Shelley at her website, shelleysenai.com.


PAST EVENTS


THANK YOU!

Thanks to our amazing panelists, the dedicated staff of The Workshop, and all who attended our panel. While we work to get an edited video with chat and Q&A transcripts up and running, here’s the recording of our Facebook Live stream. Feel free to email us with any questions, and to share this video far and wide.

Here are our chat transcripts, here are the Q&A questions and answers, and here are answers to questions we couldn’t get to during the Q&A session. We are also working hard to get captions on this video!

I'M APPLYING TO MFAS: SEND HELP!  An admissions panel featuring creative writing MFA graduate students in poetry, fiction, and CNF Sunday, November 8, 4:00-5:30 p.m. Visit readtheworkshop.com/events to register and/or add your anonymous question for our Q&A session. Contact info@readtheworkshop.com for more details.

Agenda

4:00-5:00 p.m. Topics presentation and preplanned questions
5:00-5:30 p.m. Q&A

Details

Free registration via Zoom. Submit anonymous questions for the Q&A below. Contact info@readtheworkshop.com for details. Livestreaming available on Facebook, recording posted by November 23 on The Workshop.

Moderator

Photo of writer Eshani Surya.

Eshani Surya

Eshani Surya is a fiction writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming in [PANK], Catapult, Paper Darts, Joyland, and Literary Hub, among others. Eshani is also a flash fiction reader at Split Lip Magazine. She holds an MFA from the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Find Eshani on Twitter posting as @__eshani or at her website, eshani-surya.com.

Panelists

Picture of Hannah Ford.

Hannah Ford

Hannah Ford grew up in the Midwest before moving south to Charleston and ultimately landing in Columbia. She earned her MFA from the University of South Carolina and teaches composition and rhetoric and creative writing there, as well as at Columbia International University. Her work has appeared in Lunch Ticket, Sawpalm, The 3288 Review, Jonah Magazine, Lipstickparty Mag, and others.

Find Hannah on Twitter posting as @fordcommahannah.

Jackie Hymes

In addition to being The Workshop’s digital content coordinator, Jackie (she/they) is a hard-of-hearing queer disabled poet and aspiring creative nonfiction writer. She has an MFA in poetry from the University of California, Riverside, where she received a scholarship to attend the Community of Writers Workshop. Her work has appeared in Winter Tangerine, NAILED Magazine, The Legendary, and Chapparal. When not engaged in the writing life, Jackie builds SEO campaigns for a tech startup and studies to be a sex educator.

Email Jackie: jhyme001@ucr.edu

Desiree Evans

Desiree Evans (she/her) recently earned her MFA from the Michener Center for Writers, where she studied fiction and poetry. She is also an alum of the writing workshops hosted by VONA, Kimbilio [Fiction], Callaloo, and Hurston Wright. Her work appears in the Offing, Gulf Coast, Nimrod, Cosmonauts Avenue, and Foreshadow, amongst others.

Visit Desiree on the web at desiree-evans.com and posting on Twitter/Instagram as @literarydesiree.

Maddie Norris

Maddie Norris, the 2019 recipient of Ninth Letter‘s Literary Award in Creative Nonfiction, earned her MFA at the University of Arizona and, before that, was the Thomas Wolfe Scholar at UNC Chapel Hill. Her work can be found in Territory, Essay Daily, and Opossum, among others. She is currently at work on a collection of essays about the death of her father, niche medical history, and the pitfalls of romantic love.

Find Maddie at maddienorris.com.

Shelley Senai

Shelley Senai is a recent graduate of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and currently serves as the assistant fiction editor at Raleigh Review. Her work can be found in Citron Review and Reservoir. In 2018, she received an emerging artist award from the St. Botolph Club Foundation in Boston. She resides outside of Boston with her husband and two young children, and is currently finishing her first novel.

Find Shelley at her website, shelleysenai.com.

Annesha Mitha

Annesha Mitha is a Zell Fellow at the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program. Her work is published or forthcoming from McSweeney’s Quarterly ConcernAmerican Short FictionThe Kenyon Review, and The Margins, among others. She has received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and Kundiman. She is a volunteer counselor with Crisis Text Line, and lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with a hound named Flower. 

Find Annesha at her website, anneshamitha.com.

Stephanie Lane Sutton

Former MFA Years blogger Stephanie Lane Sutton writes poetry, essays, and fiction. Her chapbook of stories, Shiny Insect Sexwas published by Bull City Press in 2019. Her writing has appeared in The Adroit Journal, the Offing, and Black Warrior Review, among others, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, and PEN America’s Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers. She has a creative writing MFA from the University of Miami

Find Stephanie at her website, stephanielanesutton.com.

Sarah Thankam Mathews

Sarah Thankam Mathews grew up in India and Oman. She has been awarded fellowships by the Iowa Writers Workshop, where she earned her MFA, and the Asian American Writers’ Workshop. She has work forthcoming in Best American Short Stories 2020, edited by Curtis Sittenfeld. A novel is at work on her.

Find Sarah at her website, smathewss.com.

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