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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My new article!

Sorry about the long hiatus, but the vacation was sorely needed! We got back from Hawaii and I found my article had been published by Hope Clark of www.fundsforwriters.com! She is a gracious and kind editor and a writers best friend!

Here's the full article! Now go on out there and sign up for your own newsletter which is filled with everything a writer needs to be successful!


Living the Dream

By Ginger Marcinkowski

Something happens to women as they age. It's not just about
hair that sprouts out of unnatural places, nor the waves of
heat that wash over our sagging flesh. No, it's something much
more exciting. It's the chance to live out a dream.

It happened to me at age fifty-five. A tiny hope I'd harbored
most of my life surged to the surface like a volcanic eruption
one night. My husband and I were both picking at our dinner,
half-watching a television sit-com.

"I want to be a writer," I blurted.

"So what's stopping you?" my husband said, never taking his
eyes off the television.

I'd been expecting some sort of protest, some awkward glance
that would pooh-pooh my little dream. I hadn't thought of a
comeback if he'd actually said, "Go for it." I had no plan. For
days, I walked around in a fog, wondering what I should do next.

One evening my husband pushed a stack of paper at me, data on
all of the MFA programs around the nation. My mouth went slack
in surprise. "Here you go, Honey," he said, pulling four papers
out of the stack. "I've researched them all for you. I've
narrowed them down to what I think will work for you, these
four are your best bets. You can still keep your job AND do
these programs online."

"But. . ." I protested.

"No excuses Honey. It's time you did what you really want to do.
Besides, I'm retiring in a couple of years and I need you to keep
working." A wide smile cut into his face as I threw my arms
around him.

I chose the Wilkes University low-residency MFA program, because
it offered the flexibility of two eight-day residencies on the
Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania campus each year, and a chance to
interact with staff and students in person and online. Students
choose from five tracks of study: poetry, fiction, non-fiction,
screenplay and play writing. Tuition costs are $610 per credit
hour. Thirty credit hours are required for the Master's Degree
and an additional eighteen hours for the completion of the MFA.

The quality of the instructors and the outlets provided for a
student's completed work surprised me. Students work with mentors:
published authors, screenplay writers, stage playwrights and poets.
I work with the very talented, Sara Pritchard, author of the
threaded short-story collections, Crackpots & Lately. Having a
professional writer, as well as a skilled instructor available
online and by telephone has been invaluable to my learning the
craft of writing well. During the June 2010 residency, an agent
from New York read and gave an honest verbal and written critique
of my work, all part of the Wilkes program. I then got to enjoy a
one-on-one meeting with her during residency, an opportunity I'd
not heard of in other MFA programs. We "pitched" our work to
several agents and editors. Playwrights had off-Broadway readings
by professional actors. Wilkes's relationships with authors,
agents, editors and publishers have given me opportunities I'd
never dared to think about before this program!

I'm at a crossroads now, somewhere between ecstatic and afraid,
one semester away from receiving my MFA. I've completed my first
book and will be shopping it to an agent with the help of
professionals I've met. Other writers in the program have
encouraged and supported me the whole way; friends I'll never

Was it worth it? Every last harried minute of it! I'm living my
dream and writing like crazy!

Visit http://wilkes.edu/pages/412.asp for more information!

Ginger Marcinkowski is an aspiring author who's recently
received her Master's Degree in Creative Writing from Wilkes
University in Wilkes-Barre, PA and is currently pursuing her
MFA there. She placed in the Smoke City Narrators Novel Pitch,
and the Phillip Mangelsdorf Competition in Writing Excellence
and has received numerous Honorable Mentions in various
creative writing contests. She is an active blogger and is
in the editing process of her first complete manuscript.

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