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Rules for Anchorites

Letters from Proxima Thule


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I got a great education at my community college, for the record. Better than at UC, except for language instruction, which to be fair, was the bulk of my degree work.

Don't let her major in creative writing. At least major in English, but really, major in something you might want to write about, and learn that--CW degrees are mostly workshops, which can be had anywhere, and the degree itself is not worth much when it comes to actually getting writing work. Tell her to major in something that will provide a good bed of knowledge to write out of.

And if she doesn't make it as a writer, she'll at least have that, and not a degree she can't use.

Edited at 2011-10-25 05:34 pm (UTC)

Oh, exactly. We have repeatedly pointed out that science and social studies and math and everything else teach her all the sorts of things she will want to write about when she complains about not liking this or that class. Finding something she can do for a living that will also give her a well-rounded education to use in writing should be her focus.

(And I'm certainly not knocking community college - I'm doing fairly well with my 2 year paralegal degree, and I learned a LOT. I'm headed back there next fall to max out my transfer credits before I wander off to a university for my bachelor's.)

And there's always the 50-50 chance that she will wind up with a Creative Writing Prof who will HATE EVERYTHING she writes, and spend the whole time effectively breaking her, because her style doesn't jive with the Prof's.

University Transfer programs are not terrible.

This happened to me in some classes. It did break me down a bit, it made me stronger ultimately but . . .I did get discouraged and didn't write for a year or two. It's an impressionable age.

This was what ultimately screwed me as a playwright forever. I highly discourage writing workshops as a result, especially at the college level.

Point out that Creative Writing classes are often taught by professors who have not published. Would she take a calculus course from someone who never differentiated an equation?

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