Arcadia

Despite my best attempts to pretend otherwise, it appears that I am a very poor blogerina.

Those of you who gave up all hope of reading anything more here on Pea Green – I can’t guarantee this marks the return of even semi-regular posts, but at the very least you deserve an update on sorts and an explanation as to why I have been reading tons of books and short stories and poems and not sharing them with you.

To start, I applied and was accepted in July to a low-residency M.F.A. program in Creative Writing at Arcadia University in Glenside, Pa. It’s the pilot year of the program, and we’re a very small class, but we’ve launched an online literary review that is affiliated with our graduate program. I’ve been appointed as a multimedia editor, and recently designed the logo for the website. If you have any aspirations of being a writer yourself, check out the submission guidelines for the Marathon Literary Review. We’d love to read your work.

It’s all very exciting – and a phenomenal amount of work, considering that I am still working part-time. The class met on campus for a week in early August to become acquainted and comfortable critiquing each other’s work (a polite way of ripping it to shreds). We started the program in earnest with the fall semester, and for the past six weeks I’ve been reading my classmates’ stories, writing my own and trying to read through my list of required books for the semester.

I figured that, while this post will not review any one particular book, I will share my book stack with you – and, with any luck, at some not-so-distant point in the future, I’ll write some reviews and ask what you think. Our lists are self-cultivated based upon recommendations from each other and from our advisor. Most of what’s currently on my list focuses on authors whose writing evokes a sense of place – I’ve been told that I have a knack for doing the same in my own attempts at a story.

1. Prague by Arthur Philips
2. Ten Little Indians by Sherman Alexie
3. In Patagonia by Bruce Chatwin
4. The Best of American Travel Writing: 2008, edited by Anthony Bourdain
5. Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft by Janet Burroway
6. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
7. Travels with Charley in Search of America by John Steinbeck
8. The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
9. The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers by John Gardner
10. Roads to Santiago: A Modern-Day Pilgrimmage Through Spain by Cees Nooteboom

Hasta pronto, folks.

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