Rethinking the Creative Writing Workshop

Writers, Readers, Instructors, Leaders, Enthusiasts. Of every Background:

It's time to rethink everything. That's not to say there aren't folks two steps ahead. It's not to say many of use haven't been subject to rethought regardless of our wills.

So, we present to you our #FridayReads #MFAvsPOC. Below, you'll find work from voices -- authors, writers, readers, leaders, instructors -- all over the national landscape. Our fiction Editor, Matt Salesses begins the conversation, and many contributions follow: in the form of quotes and essays -- personally narrative, encouraging, and convicting.

Scroll and click for visions of the future and thoughts about accelerating it.

Thanks for joining in. If you're tweeting, we're @gulf_coast. Use the hashtag #MFAvsPOC. Need to get caught up? Be immensely inspired and catalyzed by Junot Diaz's "MFA vs. POC" essay in The New Yorker.

Quotes and Essays from Voices Across the LandscapeShort Takes

Voices from across the landscape contribute perspeectives and advice. Featuring Tomas Q. Morin, Selena Anderson, Kaitlyn Greedige, Garrett Hongo, and many more.


Gulf Coast Online Fiction Editor Matt Salesses"The Reader" vs. POC


"It is a problem, I would argue, more common for marginalized writers, and a problem that stems from the way the workshop talks about 'the reader.'"


Author and Instructor Tom Willams

Don't be Agnes


"I can hear the gears turning in Agnes’s head: What’s wrong with introducing a student of color to other writers of color?"


Writer and Instructor Joy Castro

Racial and Ethnic Justice in the Creative Writing Course


"The only comment he ever uttered, after workshop was over and the students were trickling away, was, 'Are you okay?'"


Author and Instructor Bill ChengOn Teaching Writers of Color


"Any satisfactory answer to the question ought to begin by acknowledging how complex and layered the issue is."