During my MFA program, I’d found many of the unspoken rules unsettling, but as a “good girl” I was adept at submerging such feelings without a second thought. I saw what happened to “bad girls,” who questioned the system, who demanded attention. Our teachers derided them when they left the room or at the bar after class. I knew I had a limited amount of time to learn what I could from this system. I had no intention of wasting my time trying to change it. Instead, I bowed my head, re-adjusted my blinders, and got to work.
–Stephanie Vanderslice, Rethinking Creative Writing in Higher Education: Programs and Practices that Work
Stephanie Vanderslice (a.k.a. Wordamour) may indeed have “bowed [her] head” and quieted herself–accomplishments that I, alas, did not manage back when I questioned how things “worked” (or didn’t work) in my own MFA program. But she never forgot her questions, and as a tenured professor she has become an expert in creative-writing pedagogy. I have recently had the privilege of reading her new book, Rethinking Creative Writing in Higher Education, and I am thrilled to announce that Practicing Writing will soon host an interview with Professor Vanderslice about it. Please stay tuned!