January Tidings

How have I started off 2015? By applying to graduate school.

Despite my earlier reticence, I’m moving forward with seeking a suitable Masters program, one with an emphasis on practical computer programming. Mostly this means not applying for a vanilla Computer Science curriculum, given that two years of theory won’t help my job prospects after graduation. I’ve been programming professionally for years now, and I want a program that complements my existing skills, not one that ignores them.

Turning 30 this month was the kick in the pants I needed. I’ve been in a rut for years, and recently I haven’t been able to write anything, either fiction or other works. I don’t just need a change of environment, but a change in what I do during most of my waking hours.

Before, I thought that going to school would prevent me from writing. Now I think it’ll save it. It’s a false dichotomy to think that I can’t write in grad school. Jesus, Asimov wrote fiction while he was getting his PhD! It goes without saying that I’m no Asimov, but I doubt my academic life will be so demanding. Thinking that it’s “either/or” led me to make some questionable life choices, insulating myself from opportunities outside of writing. I even chickened out of taking the GRE once, but after seeing my scores from November, I had no reason to worry.

Most of the programs I’ve applied to are in Florida, as we have a pretty good state school system, and in-state tuition is hard to beat. I figure where you go is only as important as what you do there, i.e. research and thesis projects. If someone says that graduate school is only worthwhile if you can make it to an Ivy League institution, I wouldn’t believe them.

I’ll be back on here more often, once I’m through tying up loose ends. In the meantime, here’s some Simple Minds to hold you over.