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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Iowa or any MFA workshop

There have been a number of articles on "program fiction" condoning or condemning.  I say go if you find someone who's doing what you want to, or find a place that is.  Or simply go somewhere if you want time to write, or don't if you want to do your own thing on your own time without all the debt.

Stop blaming Iowa! MFA vs. NYC is a phony debate by TONY TULATHIMUTTE
The book world has a new phony debate. On the good side, at least we're not arguing about Franzen anymore 
How Iowa Flattened Literature By Eric Bennett
With CIA help, writers were enlisted to battle both Communism and eggheaded abstraction. The damage to writing lingers.  
The Iowa Writer's Workshop was instrumental in the Bay of Pigs fiasco, not to mention they helped Nixon negotiate with China.  Flannery O'Connor's sent emissary peacocks to Russia, which later led to the fall of the Berlin wall. Below is Kurt Vonnegut's attempt to take down Nikita Khrushchev (Bennett's article is interesting or I'd not post it):

Kurt Vonnegut’s Rules for Reading Fiction, A term paper assignment by Suzanne McConnell

  1. Read the fifteen tales in Masters of the Modern Short Story for pleasure and satisfaction.
  2. Grade from A to F. Like some stories better than others.
  3. Take three stories that please you most and three that please you least. Write a report on each (as if subbed to mag).
  4. Do so as a sensitive person who has a few practical hunches about how stories can succeed or fail. Do so rather flatly, pragmatically, with cunning attention to annoying or gratifying details.

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