To MFA or not to MFA?

Credit: Brave Sir Robin

Today’s guest is author talented debut author Fleur Philips. Her first novel, I Am Lucky Bird, has been called “stunning and visceral, an extraordinary debut.” A captivatingly haunting coming-of-age, I Am Lucky Bird was selected as a general fiction finalist for the 2011 Book of the Year Award from ForeWord Reviews.

When her mother mysteriously vanishes from the small town of Plains, Montana, 12-year-old Lucky Bird’s childhood comes to an abrupt end. Left to defend herself against her suddenly abusive grandmother, Marian, and forced to endure the twisted predatory games played out by Marian’s lover, Lucky soon finds herself trapped in a nightmare.

Even when she manages to escape, the outside world can’t take away the brutal images of her past. Still haunted by her mother’s disappearance and the trauma that followed, Lucky is easily led down a path of self-destruction—a path that only the intervention of a young stranger and his family can guide her away from. But first, Lucky will have to confront her demons, and the dark truths kept hidden.

To MFA or not to MFA?

When I graduated from the University of Montana in 1998, I had no interest in ever going back to school. I had a degree, along with student loans that would haunt me for years to come. Besides, I was a writer. What was the point of going back to school? I’d write books and earn a living, and all would be good.

Twelve years later, my writing was a mere hobby in the chaos of what had become my life. In 2009, I was at the top of my game as the Communications Director for a prominent Beverly Hills dermatologist. I had a great income, I loved my job, and I was meeting fabulous people. And then something happened: Michael Jackson died, and I lost my job. I thought the world was coming to an end. [Read more…]