Thursday, March 11, 2010

march madness

Dear MFA Programs,

I know that you are very busy, and that you received a record number of applicants this year. I can't blame people for applying to your programs in droves - you see, I am one of those hopeful people who is growing more and more despondent as each day passes. Of the four schools I applied to, one has already rejected me. Another has notified acceptees and I heard through the grapevine that there is even a waitlist. While I have not been officially rejected, I can only assume that it is a matter of time.

That leaves two schools. Both of these schools accept less than 2% of applicants. Both are very prestigious, located in beautiful parts of the country. Both boast a small community of writers, a supportive and creative environment, and excellent faculty. I would be thrilled - thrilled! - to attend either of these programs. And until I hear from both of them, I will constantly swing from hopeful optimism to utter despair.

Both these schools will begin notifying on March 15th, which is this Monday. I say "begin," because there will be a first round of acceptances. Those who were lucky enough to be accepted to mulitple programs will then weight their options and make their decisions, and as spots open up, those on the waitlist will get their shot. If the programs cycle through the waitlists, there is another, unofficial waitlist, full of those people who are in the worst kind of limbo, having - until that long shot moment - heard nothing at all. By the time the dust is settled and the final roster of students complete, it could be April. April! I do not know if I will make to April. I don't even know if I'll make it to Monday!

In conclusion, Dear MFA Programs, please call me on Monday with good news and full funding. I promise not to scream in your ear too loudly.

Yours truly,