Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Mr. Cizak appearing at UIndy on March 7

I've got three of them there fancy college degrees. A BA from Indiana University (finished at IUPUI, actually), an MA from the University of Indianapolis, and an MFA from Minnesota State University. The BA took me eight years to complete. That was due to my alchemist-level of substance abuse.

I witnessed a horrific political witch hunt at Minnesota State and therefore have nothing but contempt for the school and the entire state, for that matter. You may call me irrational and immature if you like, you didn't see what I saw.

The only university I ever attended that I have fond memories of is the University of Indianapolis. In 2008, the economy crashed, I lost my sweet housing situation in Los Angeles, so I moved back to the Midwest with the intention of going to grad school. Most of the places I looked into weren't ready to forgive me for my shoddy undergrad work (which, at that point, was ten years in the rear-view mirror--shame on you Ball State and Indiana University!). I was able to get into a poetry class at the University of Indianapolis and the professor of that course, Dr. Elizabeth Weber, helped set me on the path to getting my MA and the terminal MFA degree, allowing me to teach writing at the college level. The two years I spent earning my degree were peaceful and, well, educational. I learned, for instance, that the novella I'd written in 2001 (Manifesto Destination) was not actually a hard-boiled detective novel, it was, in fact, a post-modern "commentary" on both detective and science fiction. Or something like that. I learned a great deal from Dr. Weber, Dr. Drake, David Lawson, and a history professor whose name I can't remember.

It is for this reason that I am excited and honored to be reading at the University of Indianapolis next week (March 7, 7:30 pm). I will be speaking with a couple of creative writing classes, have dinner with some folks, and then read at night. It should be a fine evening and I encourage anyone in the area to show up.

Here's more info at the university's news page: http://news.uindy.edu/2016/02/29/writer-and-uindy-alumnus-to-speak-march-7/

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