The Writing Residency Without the Residency

Life is in chaos, medical bills keep rolling in, we’re moving within six months, and who knows what’s happening with this 100-degree heatwave hitting Seattle. But one thing I’m sure of? My annual homeschool MFA writing residency. Most low-residency MFA programs require at least two residencies for a cumulative total of 20 to 30 days.Continue reading “The Writing Residency Without the Residency”

Ten-Year Blogaversary!

I launched this blog ten years ago this month. Since December 2010, it’s been a wild ride, packed with ups and downs. I’ve divorced an abusive husband. I’ve performed again as a dancer. I’ve been assaulted—and assaulted again. I’ve graduated with my master’s degree in education. I’ve been felled by chronic illness so hard thatContinue reading “Ten-Year Blogaversary!”

Preparing for the At-Home Writing Retreat

This will be my first staycation without a bouquet of flowers on my desk. But it will also be my first writing retreat in years. In fact, the next seven days will be the very first official writing residency of my Accessible MFA. So to say I’m excited, even with the complications of COVID-19, wouldContinue reading “Preparing for the At-Home Writing Retreat”

What I’ll Be Doing in 2020

Ever since my goal of completing a post-diagnosis 5K hit a wall in October 2019, I’ve been skittish about setting goals. That weekend when I missed the race—the one I’d registered and trained for, that friends and family were coming to—I plummeted into such a deep depression that I didn’t see the other side untilContinue reading “What I’ll Be Doing in 2020”

Literary Theory: The Class Everyone Loves to Hate

Different institutions give it various names. Narrative Strategies. Textual Strategies. Literary Theory. Readers and Writers. But whatever you call it, it’s usually one of the first required classes. It’s also the class I’ve heard the most MFA graduates groan about. What’s the point? I’m never going to use this stuff. So, here I am, making upContinue reading “Literary Theory: The Class Everyone Loves to Hate”

The MFA Program Plan

Sharpen your pencils. Polish your trackball. Update your screen reader. Whatever accessibility means for you, do what you need to do. Because school is in session, folks! I’m a curriculum designer by day, and my M.Ed. taught me a few things about program planning. For one, not unlike a great story, a good degree programContinue reading “The MFA Program Plan”

The MFA for the Chronically Ill Writer

When I enrolled for my prerequisite language courses in 2013 leading up to my M.Ed., I was headed to grad school for the sake of financial stability. I had served the immigrant and refugee communities for over 16 years as academic support staff across two campuses as well as online. And I loved it. ButContinue reading “The MFA for the Chronically Ill Writer”

Gratitude

It’s been two weeks since the MRI. One and a half weeks since the results: Normal. Normal. Unremarkable. Normal. No edemas. No infarcts. No tumors. My brain is clear. No cancer. Nothing structural that would cause these symptoms. They are exclusively electrochemical, and they will not kill me. I had expected good results would leadContinue reading “Gratitude”

Breaking Away

It took me two years. Healing from abuse, finding the confidence to believe that you are capable of leaving—it takes a long time. It also takes seeing the other life that is possible. *             *             * The spring I was 30, I began to make friends with a coworker of mine at the college. WeContinue reading “Breaking Away”

Grandpa

That autumn I was 20, my grandfather died. A few months earlier, he had been diagnosed with cancer. He avoided doctors for most of his life, and in the end, it cost all of us. A routine colonoscopy could have nipped the cancer in the bud. But by the time his pain forced him toContinue reading “Grandpa”