My Review of Goddard College’s MFA in Creative Writing

To MFA or to not MFA? That is a good question. If you already have a career, if you are a teacher or work in a related field or somewhat related field, Goddard (or any MFA program) would be a good choice. I would say that Goddard’s program is, or was, one of the best MFA programs around. They say the program is ONLY for self-motivated students. Why? The low-residency format only works for motivated students. However, OBVIOUSLY, if you are not motivated I see absolutely no point in studying writing.  In fact, why bother with school if you lack motivation? Seriously! Don’t waste your precious money on college if you don’t give a shit about learning.

You SHOULD be motivated and disciplined in the first place to be a writer. If you ARE a writer you are already driven to write. You already WANT to write. If you hate writing, don’t take up the study of writing! To me, this is obvious. I do not understand why on earth any student would major in writing and then, make the claim that “I can’t seem to get myself to write.” Really?

Anyone who has to force herself to write should take up some other career immediately.

Now that said, looking back, Goddard College admissions office made the claim that Goddard students tended to continue writing after  leaving school.

I look back and ask…..Is this trend because of the school? Do I still write because of my Goddard education? Or, do I still write because I am a writer?

For the longest time I gave the school far too much credit.

I am sitting here writing NOT because of my schooling. I don’t know why I praised the school all these years. I write because I am a self-motivated person anyway. I am sitting here writing in spite of the school.

Not one person from Goddard has bothered to contact me in ages. The school withdrew all support of me maybe in 2016 when I tried to take out a discrimination case against them because they treated me like shit after graduation. They DID NOT RESPOND. I was on the phone for maybe an hour with the dean who then promised to get back to me and did not. I know now that a non-response to a discrimination claim is typical when any response will incriminate the defendant.

Since then I have been in touch with one other person (fellow student) who is also furious at the school. My former advisor withdrew her support of me as well, siding with the bullies. Any emails I have sent to other faculty have been unanswered no matter what the content was.

I tried getting back onto the school’s alum Facebook page briefly sometime in 2017 and I was bullied off the page. Those students, whom I did not know, should be ashamed of themselves.

There should be more oversight. There were instances that I know of when faculty, students, staff, or alums behaved extremely irresponsibly. I witnessed things happening there that should not have happened. It all slid under the rug.

 

Letters from Generation Rx

Wow I was not impressed. It starts off decent, scary and upsetting. Then it turned into a commercial. I shut it off at that point. I was totally DISGUSTED that this family forced their kids to take vitamins. I do not approve of force-feeding anything and that includes vitamins. It made the commercial part of it suck worse. Bet none of you guys take TrueHope anyway. Sounds like another ripoff. I do not know anyone who takes the stuff. Of course, who is “bipolar” anyway…….

Basically discouraged

I’ve been looking through the listings of grants and residencies, hoping for something that might apply to me. Sadly, there is really nothing out there. Many of the really good residencies have discontinued. I actually PAID for a job search board since the non-pay ones are mostly full of scam jobs. I had to literally block out the scam listings. I don’t want to be duped into doing door-t0-door sales.  These companies had made duplicate listings, several similar-looking listings in adjacent towns (big red flag) but what is left but the place where I used to work!

I do not see the job I just left, which was a non-job. Another scam, actually. I did not get paid for the work I did, two weeks’ worth, and I have reported the scumbags to the Federal Trade Commission. I have heard the Attorney General might also be a good avenue to try if I do not hear back from the FTC. If I still care. I think my supposed boss was using a fake name, actually, and likely a “throwaway” phone.

I’m thinking more job training. But will it lead to a real job, or will it flop like everything else has? Job training is great but you have to get hired. There have to be job openings. If there isn’t any demand, it’s pointless to get the training. And people really really really have to quit being condescending toward me because the shitty attitude I get sure does not help at all.

I wonder if I can do some kind of marketing research on my own and see what kinds of positions are open where I would be WANTED and APPRECIATED around here that aren’t shit jobs where you get bossed around. Where “job training” does not mean you get shamed and demeaned, or live every day to fear the next time you will be.  Where a “good day at work” doesn’t mean it’s a day the supervisor isn’t there watching over your shoulder. Where “fast food” hasn’t taken on a new meaning because they’ve told you you have to rush your “personal breaks.” Never mind peeing faster. A workplace where you aren’t thrilled the day you are fired. I really was!

Someday I will find a workplace that actually appreciates me and doesn’t demand that I be someone else. Where I don’t have to sweet-talk anyone. Where I am not constantly worrying about what I say and do. There must be a place out there.

The more I think about it, the more I am convinced I should be working for myself. That’s what I do, isn’t it? I do fine, don’t I? That is what being “self-motivated” means. Only I can shout that one as loudly as I want…does anyone hear me?

Where are those grants? Please come hand me one.

The only real use for essential oils

Essential oils might be useful for making soaps, perfumes, and scented candles. However, I don’t see much use for scented items, but maybe you could sell them and make money. Or possibly these items could be used to repel (or attract) insects or birds. Other than that I doubt essential oils are all that essential. Some are very poisonous to pets and likely, children also. I have not experienced any “healing” from essential oils. I never felt “relaxed” from lavender. I find the scent extremely obnoxious. If I put it on my pillow I cannot get to sleep all night long! Essential oils had no effect on my eating disorder even though a pushy distributor insisted that they work.  (I never spent very much….) I have had to toss out deodorants that keep me awake due to the strong odor (they claim “soft scent.’..). I never got any effect from CBD oil. It does not help you sleep and doesn’t sedate at all. It just smells funny. I suspect if is to have any “effect” you have to take internally, but even then, it is not likely to put you to sleep. I hear that if you are stupid enough to drink oregano oil you will get indigestion. Is that an “effect”? Do-Terra is the worst offender because of the price and overblown claims. They should be taken to court. I can’t believe the number of people who fall for Do-Terra, even well-educated people. The only good thing is that if you fall for it, and become a distributor, unlike Tupperware, storing those useless scam oils won’t take up too much room in your basement after you’re realized you have been duped. So now, maybe set up a candle store on Ebay but….good luck.

 

 

You Tube uploaded. Please listen to the message instead of….

Please listen to what I have to say. I know in my heart that viewers watched just to see what I look like because people knew I survived an eating disorder. A lot of you really didn’t give a shit about the message. That’s why I took down the other YouTube. I was disgusted. Comments on YouTube cannot be moderated the same way as before, which is another concern.

You Tubes created much easier with an iphone

I was able to make a YouTube much easier with my iphone. I was able to take it out of the phone by using a USB stick special for an iphone. The stick fits into the phone and the transfer is instant. I was then able to trim the video and then change the codec to be compatible with YouTube using a special video editing program called OpenShot. I have never been able to get OpenShot to work before, but it does seem to work well with my newly installed version of Linux. My last video took about ten hours to upload to YouTube but this one is not taking that long. I read that if you format the files correctly they will take much less time. If not formatted in a compatible way, YouTube will format them for you, and this will cause considerable delay. Some video editing software has hints for you as to which way to do to codecs for which purpose, such as Vimeo, YouTube, etc. I find this handy. I do not like having to memorize all those numbers.

Beware of fake Facebook and fake Twitter accounts

Fake Facebook and Fake Twitter accounts are usually set up either to wreck the reputation of the person they are impersonating or to find out information from “friends” of the friends of the person. The former is done by impersonating someone they want to get back at, then, posting lewd content or just plain ole spam.

The other method, which I have also seen done, is to join a page that the real person would ordinarily join. Then, “friend” her friends. Then, try to get information from her friends, whatever you want, such as, “What are you up to tonight?” Or, “Did you get the bonus check from social security that I got? How much do you have now?” Or, “If you want, I can drop by? Can you give me your address for my GPS?” And so on.

We caught one of these fake accounts once by notifying the real person. Oops.

I had one that I really wasn’t sure was real but she kept asking for my address which seemed a bit too much, and I finally decided she was not really whom she claimed to be. Of course, when I sent her a post office box I never heard from her again.

Media bias: CNN

I do not watch TV and am not familiar with the various networks. However, here is a story about media bias that is very concerning:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2018/02/23/scripted-controversy-cnn-releases-emails-of-correspondence-with-florida-student/

Clearly, CNN was trying to “shape” the student’s words. I myself have been interviewed by newspapers and they do it various ways.  I KNOW as a writer that it’s hard to keep your own bias out of a story. However, it’s a reporter’s responsibility to minimize bias. There’s a difference between what CNN is doing here and the usual trimming that a reporter might do. For instance, I had a piece published a while back that I didn’t link to here. The editor  broke up my paragraphs differently than I had set them originally. Why? Because the columns were narrow. Editors have to shorten paragraphs when columns are narrow. This is an editorial necessity and they know how to do this without wrecking the meaning of the written content. The editor and I were both aware that the content was “toned down.” We had to do this, she explained, because there was a senior editor she had to answer to. She told me she would tone it down the absolute minimum. This with good humor and understanding. As you are likely guessing, the “anti” of the antipsychiatry message was toned down, but god bless this editor, it was still there, you bet.

However, as we can see, CNN was literally shoving its own bias into this student interview. The student decided to speak up. His parents supported his claim. Our pals at the Washington Post picked up this secondary story. And now, all hell has broken loose.

Ethics and HIPAA confusion

I have heard patients make false statements about HIPAA that I would like to clarify.

Who is bound by HIPAA laws? Only healthcare organizations and their employees are bound by HIPAA, such as doctors, nurses, volunteers, insurance agencies, and clerical workers. Also, individual clinicians are bound by HIPAA and government agencies which might have your healthcare records such as Medicare or overseeing organizations, or anyone doing medical testing or screening.

Who is not bound by HIPAA? Your parents are not bound by HIPAA, nor are your friends nor are fellow patients. If you are in group therapy, other group members are not bound by HIPAA. This is a common fallacy I have heard multiple times. Sorry to say, if you tell your fellow patient some dirty secret and your fellow patient then tells someone else, you cannot claim (as I have heard) “He broke my HIPAA privacy.” This is not true.

Patients do not sign any such papers. They DO sign papers stating that the health care organization is bound by HIPAA laws. The papers only mean you have received the papers and read them. Patients do not sign papers stating they are similarly bound by such laws. They can, in fact, say whatever the hell they want, and the worst that can happen is that we might find them obnoxious, or they might get kicked out of group. They won’t get arrested nor fined.

What is the use, then, of telling patients, “What is said here stays here”? I can tell you why the staff say that. It makes patients feel good. But really, who does this statement protect? The unit, the staff, and the administrators, the people that run the groups and their liability, of course!

Do you EVER sign papers saying you will stay mum? Do you EVER sign papers saying you will NEVER EVER blog about the atrocities in a nuthouse? Do you ever sign papers saying you will have total amnesia about the events that take place there? Do you sign papers stating you will admit that the atrocities are all in your head? Do you sign that if you are treated horribly you won’t blog about it all as soon as you are out? Do you sign “no disparaging comments” papers?

No such papers exist. You can rat on them all you want. HIPAA does not protect the privacy of health care providers. It has nothing to do with THEIR privacy. This is another fallacy.

If you see a human rights abuse in a hospital and you are a health care worker, you are OBLIGATED to report it. Yup. Obligated. By law.  Most job descriptions state this and workers are trained and told to report. Do they? HIPAA does not mean you can get away with keeping it secret. By law, you report it to the authorities. What does this say about the places we have been and the things we have seen?

Patients are not obligated to report. However, in my case I have another set of ethics I have to listen to. Writers’ ethics. I CAN write. I am good at it. So therefore, I feel obligated to write on my own behalf and on behalf of those who do not have access to writing tools or are not able to due to circumstances. I am blessed with the ability, skill, and motivation. This drives me to write about just about every injustice I have seen. It is a moral duty as far as I am concerned. Never mind it pisses them off.

I was not bound by HIPAA as I didn’t work in those facilities. I was only a patient, only a witness, and by all means when these atrocities were done to me as a patient I had no obligation to keep it to myself nor to protect the privacy of the wrongdoers.

Again, HIPAA applies only to patient privacy, not provider privacy, and patients are not bound by HIPAA.

Comment on YouTube

It doesn’t make sense to me to keep the YouTube up there if people cannot understand it. What’s the point? If people can BARELY understand it, that is, only get a few words here and there, there IS NO POINT. I wasn’t doing it to be a pretty face, in fact, I am not a pretty face and it’s humiliating to do this.

I don’t get why I got fucking tokenism when people really couldn’t understand what I was saying nor truly appreciate it considering how much effort I put into it (for no pay, by the way) and never mind the TIME…..And never mind the fact that people asked me to put it up there…..It seems ridiculous now.

I feel like a little kid getting praise for fucking up “show and tell.”

Why didn’t you guys tell me the picture and sound were not coordinated? Had you actually viewed it, and then, told me, I would have known and taken it down immediately. When I realized it was screwed up, and then, realized no one noticed, I figured, with  much amusement, no one even listened.

Is it not embedded here? I’m taking it down.