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MFA Application - Creative Writing

Updated: Jan 18

Your personal statement should be an intellectual autobiography that addresses your literary apprenticeship and the relevant life experiences that have led you to apply for the MFA. Address your literary influences and demonstrate that you have an informed wish to study with our specific faculty. What critical or creative issues do you plan to pursue after your MFA?

I have always wanted to be a writer, but beyond that, I feel that I have always been a writer. Even when I was forced to work in education to make ends meet for my family, I knew it was just a placeholder - I was meant for something greater. I believe that your Master's Program in Creative Writing will allow me to achieve that (as well as to impress upon my spouse that I am indeed serious about a career in the literary arts).

Admittedly, my literary apprenticeship has not been a formal one. Entrapped as I am in dreary domestic servitude, I was not able to pursue higher education beyond my teaching certification. However, my studies were my own, and my instructors were the greatest available - I have spent long, snow-filled nights listening to my young son cry and suckling at the teat of men such as Karouwack, Hemmingway, Steinbeck, and Burroughs. These writers and others taught me that writing is about a man telling his honest truth, nothing more, nothing less.

My attraction to your program has less to do with your "faculty" and more so with the location of your campus, which appears to be remote and far from the distractions of modern life. I am a true believer that only with some good peace and quiet can a man achieve his true creative potential. Ideas, if not seized upon, decay faster than my wife's body after pregnancy. I already fear that my days of labor to provide for my family, with little to no recreation for the soul, has dulled my mind beyond repair.

I am looking, of course, to write the next great American novel. Anything less would be a waste of my potential. I embody our nation's modern man, struggling harder than anybody in this rapidly industrialized world to shoulder the responsibilities that society has placed upon him without breaking his back and mind. If only people could read my story! Then they would understand. Then they would see that I am more than a husband or a father or an unemployed seasonal groundskeeper. I am an artist! I am the Adonis! I am Sysiphus, rolling those who depend on me up a hill, unrecognized! Would that I could let them go, stand up straight, to run through the maze of life unhindered!

Please see the enclosed writing sample and forgive any grammar or spelling mistakes, as I have used a typewriter and will not allow my bitch wife to proofread.


Jack Torrence

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