Wish me luck everybody! This is the final essay I submitted for application to graduate school. In order to keep the “you will never be a writer” demons at bay, I have decided, much like James Franco, to keep myself constantly busy with various creative projects.
“You must stay drunk on writing, so reality cannot destroy you.” – Ray Bradbury, Zen in the Art of Writing
I have been a sailor, a waitress, a landscaper, a babysitter and a pharmacist just to name a few. While I have been exposed to many aspects of society serving in those roles, since becoming a pharmacist in 2000, I have had even closer contact with many people in many walks of life. I currently am a pharmacy manager at a rural location in east Texas, which is approximately an hour and half driving time from my home. Getting to know my patients, many of whom are the working poor, has renewed my interest in pursuing my dream to become a writer. I would love one day to publish stories that reflect the lives of the downtrodden in today’s society.
Also, while employed as a staff pharmacist at a major retail chain prior to my current position, I often talked to the employees as well as patients. I learned about elderly employees having to quit because the company required them to have open availability; meaning available to work 24 hours a day. Some of them had night blindness so this was not an option for them. They were forced to quit, in spite of needing the extra money to supplement their social security income. There was an unwritten policy at the corporate level to eliminate employees who had worked too many years for the company because they had reached too high a level of pay. These are just a couple of examples of the lives that are quietly ruined every day at the mercy of large companies. I don’t know what happened to all of them, but it’s something I’d like to explore further and write about.
I enjoy any writing that delves into the inner workings of characters. My writing tends to be very character driven and I enjoy reading and writing in various genres. There is so much in the world to explore that I never tire of learning. I am interested in so many subjects that I realized that to research all of them, it would be best for me to pursue a career as a writer. I also aspire to teach at the university level in the future and to help me achieve that goal, I hope to go on to pursue a PhD as well.
I enjoy a wide variety of authors. Some examples are John Steinbeck, Stephen King, George R.R. Martin, J.K. Rowling and Khaled Hosseini just to name a few. Whether the story is set in a fantasy world or our world, is not important to me. I enjoy stories that reflect the current times in our own world and in which characters grow and learn. Whether they learn to become kinder or more ruthless is not important, just as long as the reader understands why they changed.
I believe life is a journey for all of us and I like to see that in the characters I read about and write about. I am particularly interested in Multiverse Theory, the similarities and differences of religions throughout the world, and the growing popularity of apocalyptic literature. I would love to focus my thesis on a comparison of heroes in comic books and literature with the heroes in various religions of the world. I have read extensively on the subject and have become aware of similarities between for example, biblical angels and Superman who is known on his planet as Kal-El. Many angel names contain the el suffix as well; Gabriel, Ariel, Michael, etc.… The world needs heroes, whether they be part of a culture’s mythology or literary canon.
I started attending the University of Oklahoma in the fall of 1994. My plan was to major in English as I had always dreamed. I started with humanities courses like Philosophy, English and the like and maintained a 4.0 GPA. I received scholarships from the College of Arts and Sciences, the University Women’s Association and from the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education. I also was granted membership in the Golden Key National Honor Society. I excelled in both humanities courses as well as science, so I made what I thought was at the time the more practical decision and chose pharmacy as my major. That choice has served me well, but now I’d like to indulge both my creative impulses and contribute to society in an even larger capacity for the second half of my life.
My life experience has been varied and often times a bit off the beaten track. I believe that I would bring a unique set of experiences to the incoming graduate class. Throughout my life I have always loved learning and improving myself. I hope that I will be able to continue to do so as a Humanities (with a creative writing emphasis) graduate student at the University of Texas at Dallas.