The Sex Appeal of a PhD

I want to be a Doctor—I think.
Not a life-saving, disease-curing, blood-splattered doctor.
Not a doctor who writes prescriptions, but a doctor who writes.  
It takes a certain type of passion, dedication and selflessness to become a doctor. 
I don’t have that.
What I do have is passion, dedication and the belief in the selfish pursuit of my craft. There are PHDs, MFAs and MAs who studied writing to inspire other writers to appreciate, respect and achieve their craft; to find and pursue what interests them on the page. 
I had such a professor.
Johns Hopkins’ Joanne Cavanaugh Simpson recognized the pursuit of my craft and encouraged me to appreciate that which I admire and aspire to achieve in other writers.  She encouraged me to submit pieces for publication and researched publications for me to submit to.
Joanne became more than a teacher; she became my unofficial mentor and advisor, my writing enabler, my friend.
If I were to teach, I would want to take such an interest in my students that I recognized their strengths and weaknesses.  I would want to be a professor who critiques works with the eyes of an editor and the goal of helping each student make each piece publishable. I would want the vision to help each writer I touch realize what they most admire about their craft and strive to develop, hone and cherish it.
But I worry I am too selfish, right now, to teach.
I do not want to face a mound of manuscripts to my left while cradling my own in my lap. I do not want to have to put off ‘one more minute’ to critique a piece for fear of losing the tone of a dialogue. I am not ready to put my words behind those of my students.
I know myself too intimately to teach. 
Instead, I will continue to learn, to craft, to practice, to write.  I will continue to build a network of writers, to appreciate language and psychology within words, and to be fascinated by endings.
I may or may not pursue my Doctorate in Creative Writing.  I just want to write, a place to write, and a community of writers to indulge in. Still, I am taking French lessons just in case I decide to pursue my PHD--there is something sexy about Dr. Yvonne Battle-Felton.


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