43 episodes

MFA Writers is the podcast where host Jared McCormack interviews creative writing MFA students about their program, their process, and a piece they’re working on.

MFA Writers Jared McCormack

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 33 Ratings

MFA Writers is the podcast where host Jared McCormack interviews creative writing MFA students about their program, their process, and a piece they’re working on.

    Jason Rodriguez — School of the Art Institute of Chicago

    Jason Rodriguez — School of the Art Institute of Chicago

    With a background in cinema, Jason Rodriguez of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago sits down with Jared to talk about how film influences his poetry. They unpack how Jason captures movement in visual poems, how the bombardment of media and pandemic isolation influence his work, and how he found an MFA program that allows him to investigate all areas of writing without confinement to a single track.

    Jason Rodriguez is a second-year MFA in Writing student focusing on design, interactivity, and poetry at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He’s been a producer on the school’s podcast, SAIC Beat, for the last three seasons. He was an Assistant Poetry Editor for the journal ANMLY and recently worked on a queer/sci-fi stop-motion short film titled Mother Bunker, which played at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Outfest, and Melbourne International Film Festival. His writing has been published or is forthcoming in BathHouse Journal, GlitterMOB, Mannequin Haus, Word For/Word, and Gasher, and was included as the introduction to Michael Aurelio’s poetry collection, The Smokers (2019). Find him on Instagram @freefloppydisk.

    MFA Writers is hosted by Jared McCormack and produced by Jared McCormack and Hanamori Skoblow. New episodes are released every two weeks. You can find more MFA Writers at MFAwriters.com.

    This episode was requested by De’Andre Holmes. Thank you for listening, De’Andre!

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 52 min
    Rerelease: Marcus Jamison — University of South Carolina

    Rerelease: Marcus Jamison — University of South Carolina

    The podcast team is on vacation (re: staycation)! Enjoy one of our favorite episodes from the earliest days of the show. Regular programming will resume in two weeks.

    Can writing be a form of protest? And if so, is there room for hope? Jared sits down with Marcus Jamison of the University of South Carolina to talk about Confederate monuments and economic justice, as well as finding solace in writing and crafting poetry after our literary heroes.

    Marcus Jamison is a poet and scholar from Hamlet, North Carolina. He is in his final year as an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of South Carolina, where he served as a senior editor for Yemassee Journal. His poems have appeared in Barely South Review and Quarterly West, as the 2017 winner of an AWP Intro Journals Award. He has also been a finalist for the Scotti Merrill Award and for 92Y's Discovery Poetry Contest. A fellow of The Watering Hole, he is also an avid fiction and nonfiction writer. He can be found on Twitter @theRarePoet.

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 45 min
    Cordis Paldano — Minnesota State University, Mankato

    Cordis Paldano — Minnesota State University, Mankato

    Both stage acting and fiction writing are practices in understanding and embodying characters. Cordis Paldano of Minnesota State University, Mankato joins Jared to discuss the ways his acting career informs his writing, the pros and cons of starting the MFA at an older age, and the experience of publishing a children’s novel he wrote in under two months.

    Cordis Paldano is a third-year MFA student in Fiction at Minnesota State University. Previously, he was a theatre artist studying acting at the French National Academy of Drama in Paris. He has performed in over 25 plays in India and France, and co-founded a theatre company in Pondicherry. He is also the author of a 2018 children's novel (Hachette India).

    This episode was requested by Ailee Slater. Thank you for listening, Ailee!

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 40 min
    Luke Larkin — University of Montana

    Luke Larkin — University of Montana

    Literary fiction on Monday, pulp on Tuesday, YA on Wednesday, poetry on Thursday. Luke Larkin of the University of Montana tells Jared about crossing and mixing genres in a program with a literary pedigree, how queerness and Catholicism influence his writing, and surviving (and thriving!) in the natural beauty and long winters of Missoula.

    Luke Larkin earned his BA in creative writing at the University of Montana before entering UM's MFA program, where he is a second-year fiction student and editor-in-chief of CutBank Magazine, the program's long-running literary magazine. While he studies fiction primarily, he also writes creative nonfiction and poetry. His work has appeared in Popshot, HAD, Barren Magazine, and elsewhere. Find him on Twitter @lukeglarkin, his website, lukelarkin.info, and the micro magazine Unstamatic.

    This episode was requested by Diana Heald. Thank you for listening, Diana!

    MFA Writers is hosted by Jared McCormack and produced by Jared McCormack and Hanamori Skoblow. New episodes are released every two weeks. You can find more MFA Writers at MFAwriters.com.

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 54 min
    Keely O’Connell — University of Alaska Fairbanks

    Keely O’Connell — University of Alaska Fairbanks

    Skiing to campus and living without running water may not be typical aspects of the MFA experience, but they are common at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. On this episode, Keely O’Connell tells Jared about her yurt-to-campus commute, writing nonfiction about wilderness experiences, and surviving comprehensive exams.

    Keely O'Connell is a third-year MFA student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Her focus is nonfiction. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Northwest Review, Hippocampus, and CRAFT.

    This episode was requested by Shalini Singh. Thank you for listening, Shalini!

    MFA Writers is hosted by Jared McCormack and produced by Jared McCormack and Hanamori Skoblow. New episodes are released every two weeks. You can find more MFA Writers at MFAwriters.com.

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 57 min
    Rerelease: Special Episode! Cady Vishniac — MFA Applications

    Rerelease: Special Episode! Cady Vishniac — MFA Applications

    As we approach the first application deadlines of this MFA cycle, enjoy this rerelease to help you tackle questions such as: Should I get an MFA? What should I consider when applying? How can I strengthen my application? In this special episode, Jared is joined by Cady Vishniac, Editor-in-Chief of The Workshop and MFA graduate from The Ohio State University. Together, they address MFA applicants’ most common questions and concerns, like crafting a solid statement of purpose and finding a program that accommodates student parents.

    Cady Vishniac attended The Ohio State University as the first MFA student to be awarded a Distinguished University Fellowship. Her stories have been published in Joyland, Glimmer Train, and New England Review, winning the contests at Ninth Letter, Greensboro Review, Mid-American Review, New Millennium Writings, Lascaux Review, American Literary Review, New Letters, and Salamander, as well as the anthology prize in New Stories from the Midwest. Her most recent publications are two stories in Tikkun and a Yiddish translation in Los Angeles Review. She has been writing for The Workshop since 2015 and became its Editor-in-Chief in 2020.

    MFA Writers is hosted by Jared McCormack and produced by Jared McCormack and Hanamori Skoblow. New episodes are released every two weeks. You can find more MFA Writers at MFAwriters.com.

    BE PART OF THE SHOW
    — Leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, or Podcast Addict.
    — Submit an episode request. If there’s a program you’d like to learn more about, contact us and we’ll do our very best to find a guest who can speak to their experience.

    STAY CONNECTED
    Twitter: @MFAwriterspod
    Instagram: @MFAwriterspodcast
    Facebook: MFA Writers
    Email: mfawriterspodcast@gmail.com

    • 1 hr 22 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
33 Ratings

33 Ratings

Awsome face 1254 ,

Awesome listen even if you’re not looking into an MFA

I stumbled on this podcast while considering options including conferences and residencies. I love hearing the brief readings and then the (talented) writers sharing more about the piece and their process. The mfa info is usually the last part of the podcast. I also find that interesting. The programs are so diverse and really worth researching if you are considering an MFA. Love the music in the beginning and Jared McCormack is a really warm, curious interviewer that keeps humor in the process.

jennalee3 ,

Insightful and compelling

I appreciate how Jared takes great inventory of applicants’ needs and interests with each interview. I’ve found this podcast insightful and have enjoyed the all-around compelling conversations with a range of guests.

E. Mimzo ,

Delightful

This podcast is a delightful companion to the MFA bug I’ve had for months. I am constantly inspired by the individuals Jared interviews and even find myself listening to some of the same episodes over again. Each episode is unique to eat poet/writer yet somehow Jared continues to bring everything back to the main focus on MFA programs and what they can do for writers—and what they struggle with as well. I can’t wait for more episodes. Thank you!

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