Last weekend, I graduated! Look, I even have photographic evidence:
Reading my creative thesis and trying not to pass out:
Delivering my graduate lecture on the function of banter in YA novels and how writers can use banter to achieve emotional resonance:
Celebrating with my FANTASTIC class, The Crafttographers! (Yes, we are in costume, and yes, we are all adults.)
And finally, in our gowns and with our hoods and diplomas! We're official!
Attending VCFA has been life-changing in the best, most magical way. Over the last two years, I've read over 300 books, written fifteen critical essays and one verrrrrrrrry long critical thesis. I wrote pages and pages and pages of creative work for three different novels. I wrote a first full draft of a novel one semester, and then I completely re-wrote it the next semester. I attended five different workshops, and I got to work with many wonderfully wise, patient, and talented writer mentors. The program blew my mind wide open--to new literature, new forms, new ideas, and new perspectives. And along the way, I met some of the best people and writers living on this Earth. I'm very grateful, and right now a little teary.
Many people have asked me, "What's next?" The answer isn't terribly exciting--more writing, more working, and always more reading. The program teaches you to be a writer in the "real world" of jobs and families and busy schedules, and I'm excited to see what will happen next. Right after I finish unpacking and laundry and go grocery shopping and...
If you're considering VCFA or taking your writing to the next level, feel free to email me! I really mean that. I love VCFA, and I will talk about the program for daaaaayyysssss...because it really is Hogwarts in real life!