Creative Writing MFA Programs: Background information when reading The Plot

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The Plot

by Jean Korelitz

The Plot by Jean Korelitz X
The Plot by Jean Korelitz
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    May 2021, 336 pages

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Peggy Kurkowski
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Creative Writing MFA Programs

This article relates to The Plot

Hands poised on typewriter keysThe Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is a graduate-level degree earned by students who seek to pursue work as authors, editors, playwrights, or to teach at the college level. As of 2019, there were more than 200 Creative Writing MFA programs according to Poets & Writers' MFA Index, of which 158 were full-time residency and 64 low-residency programs (like the fictional Ripley Symposia where Jacob Finch Bonner teaches in The Plot).

One of the most prestigious and prominent MFA writing programs is the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, the first creative writing degree program established in the United States in 1936. One of the hardest programs to get accepted into, the achievements of its alumni are impressive — graduates include "winners of virtually every major literary award, including seventeen winners of the Pulitzer Prize (most recently Paul Harding in 2010), six recent U.S. Poets Laureate, and numerous winners of the National Book Award [and] MacArthur ...

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