On July 20, 2014, the final day of the upcoming residency, the MFAC program will have a Graduate Recognition ceremony, honoring the men and women who have just completed their studies and will receive an MFA from Hamline University. Between now and residency (July 11) we’ll be posting interviews with many of the grads. Maria Macioci is today’s grad; Last semester her paper “Letting Girls Play Too: Writing a Quality YA Female Sports Novel” won the Jane Resh Thomas Prize for critical writing. Maria lives in Brainerd, Minnesota.
What do you do when you’re not working on packets?
I love reading, working out, teaching, hitting up garage sales, and hanging out with my awesome family and friends. Also, to pass the time while working out or sitting in stultifying meetings, I dream up these elaborate fantasies where I befriend celebrities.
How did you hear about the Hamline MFAC Program?
I’m an English teacher, and I’d reached the point in my career where I wanted to pursue my graduate degree. I was looking for a low residency program that didn’t take place on the moon or some other intangible venue (AKA an unaccredited, online “school”). I knew Hamline was an actual place with actual human beings. That’s the long answer. The short? Google.
What was your writing experience prior to entering the program?
I’m an English teacher with a Communications degree as well, so I’ve always dabbled in writing of all types. In kindergarten, I wrote a moving essay about my deceased goldfish, David.
What do you especially remember about your first residency?
Have you focused on any one form (PB, novel, nonfiction; graphic novel) or age group in your writing? Tried a form you never thought you’d try?
I’m currently writing a YA novel. I’d like to write a musical screenplay about my bestie Kristen Wiig and I doing quotidian, best friend things like eating at Cinnabon, rollerblading, barbecuing, and singing. See question #1.
It’s a young adult novel that both exhilarates and stresses me out SO MUCH. It’s been a ton of fun, however, and I’d like it to be done this summer.
What changes have you seen in your writing during your studies?
I’m much more confident and less rambly. As you can see by my use of highbrow terms like “less rambly”, I’ve gotten super awesome. Okay, I’m obviously kidding about the super awesome, but I’ve got to say that the Hamline instructors are just that – super awesome! They know their stuff, and since joining the program, I’ve learned so much. This experience has definitely been a life-changer.
With packet deadlines removed as an incentive, do you anticipate it will be harder to keep writing? Any plans for your post-Hamline writing life?
Yes, I do anticipate it being more difficult. Post-Hamline, my plans are to keep writing and loving it!
Any thoughts for entering students or for people considering the program?