“Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something.” –Thoreau

14 October 2011


It's official. I'm going to graduate school.

I'll begin attending the Vermont College of Fine Arts in January 2012. I'll be working toward my Masters degree in Writing for Children and Young Adults. The writer-in-residence for our first semester will be Libba Bray-- author of the New York Times bestseller A Great and Terrible Beauty (a very good book) among other titles. It's a two year low-residency program, among the best low-res writing programs in the country (The Atlantic, Poets & Writers, ect). Plus, they offer my specialization. Most of the other schools I spoke with (full- and low-residency) either "don't do" young adult literature or assured me they could "make it work." Umm... no. Graduate school is too expensive for me to trust you'll somehow "make it work." The VCFA program is focused, innovative, and very exciting. I think I'm going to learn a lot.

Four books on this display were written by VCFA alumni.
It's scary, of course. It's a lot of money and a lot of time. My health isn't very good, I don't have a day-job right now, and we'd like to add children to our little family in the next few years (human children, obviously, since we already have the fuzzy variety). I've given serious consideration to whether or not it's even worth it; we all know a degree won't guarantee success, or even employment. But Casey assures me we can make it work and Casey never lies to me. Usually. Cue the weary sigh.

I have to give special thanks to the former-professors who submitted letters of recommendation for me. Well, they were formerly my professors. They are still professors, just not mine. Steve Buhler, Virgina Smith, and Stan Brown: Thank you! If I end up teaching college courses someday, it will be thanks to their influence. And to all three of my mothers, who gave me feedback on my submission materials. Chris Cary, Becky Cary, and Cindy Diers: You rock! I literally couldn't have done it without them.

That's it, I guess. That's my big news. I guess I'll go back to saving Marte Possen's life now.