Thursday, October 21, 2010

Borderlands Writing Project

Borderlands Writing Project
by Peter Brooks, 3rd year Poetry MFA

The NMSU Borderlands Writing Project (BWP) is a part of the National Writing Project.  Meant to provide a communal forum to discuss, research, present, write, and share with teachers and students alike, BWP is a great experience for an MFA student.  Last summer I was fortunate enough to have taken the 6 credit summer session and found the benefits bountiful as a writer and student. BWP’s curriculum covers all aspects of English; Rhetoric, Literature, and Creative Writing.

We started out each day by having a free writing session, followed by voluntary sharing.  Those morning warm-ups were a great way to get your brain working and allowed some opportunity to either reflect or write creatively.  The daily reading and research not only provided me with a broad basis of cultural literacy and pedagogical techniques, but I was able to understand my own MFA thesis’ direction better.  I am now able to articulate the approaches I’m using on a rhetorical and academic level, in addition to craft.  Most importantly, BWP is a great way to build community.  The different perspectives from teachers, instructors, and even non-academic professionals truly helps expand our MFA world.  Even if you do not have the intention toward a teaching career, BWP creates relationships that allow you to share your future writing.
Summer 2010 BWP participants
In a summer when I was worried I would be “freaking out” over my thesis, I found the Borderlands Writing Project a great communal space to write and reflect.  I encourage any current or future MFA student to make the most of this unique opportunity.

For more information about BWP, visit this site.

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