I've spent the past two months working on a 24-page manuscript, a graduate school submission. When my husband graduated with his BA a few months ago, we sat down and talked about the future. Somehow graduate school came up. And now I'm applying.
I'm applying to six of the top fiction programs in the country. I know I should have some sort of safety school, but I don't want to be safe. If I'm going to go through with this, if I'm going to spend two (or more) years of my life on working for an MFA, then I don't want to settle for a mediocre program.
The problem with all of this? I'm just like a lot of other writers when it comes to the vortex of doubt and self-loathing. The idea that I'm putting my work out there and opening myself to rejection letters terrifies me. I have yet to submit any completed work in search for an agent, but for some reason, the mighty hand of academia scares me more than sending a query letter to an agent.
I'd like to spend the next two years in one of the best graduate programs in the country. They get to choose if I'm in or out. But if I don't knock on the door, then I don't even give it the chance to open for me.