Before getting this together, David and I asked current fiction writers at Mason the vaguest of questions: What are 1-3 things you wish you knew before you got here?
The next few posts will include what we received in response to our email. We've split them up so anyone can comment on them, whether to ask further questions or to give their own answers. I think these posts should give you (incoming writers, current writers, and prospective writers, whomever) a sense of some of the concerns we have with the program, as well as an idea as to some of the aspects of the program for which we’re grateful.
We realize that these responses are based on each writer’s experience here at Mason and will vary as a result. But based on the bigger trends we see here, I think this is a good thing to put out there for everyone to think about. We will try to fill in the holes as we go along (for example, we’ll post Northern Virginia, Mason, and DC literary events as much as we can), and we’ll try to address some of the bigger questions as well.
“The things I wish I'd known:
What classes fiction students typically take
Some insight into the different teaching styles
Best place to park
That it's possible to do independent studies
What different students have done for their master's projects
Also I think it would be really nice if fiction students had a lounge or something. As a non-TA, I feel quite disconnected from campus life.”