Name: Christine Reilly
College & Majors/Minors: Bucknell - Psychology and English double-major with a Concentration in Creative Writing. I got my MFA in Poetry from Sarah Lawrence College.
Current Location: New York, New York
Current Form of Employment: Author and teacher
Where do you work and what is your current position?
I teach fiction and poetry workshops at Sarah Lawrence College and the Gotham Writers Workshop, and my debut literary novel, Sunday's on the Phone to Monday, will be published in April with Simon & Schuster.
Tell us about how you found your first job, and how you found your current job (if different):
My first job was teaching middle and high school English at the Professional Children's School, a private school in New York City for ballet and modern dancers, Broadway actors, Julliard musicians, and professional athletes.
What was another writing-related job that was important in your career?
I had a wonderful internship at Tin House, the literary journal. I got to go through the slush pile and give feedback, which was a dream come true—reading all day!
What did you do in college to prepare for your post-grad life?
In college, I read and wrote all the time. I also kept a diary, which comes in handy now that I'm writing a novel about college students. I also got to experience writing workshop for the first time, which is my favorite place to be. Now as a teacher I facilitate workshop. I love seeing that side of the creative process. There's always such a wonderful energy in the room.
What is your advice for students and graduates with an English degree?
It sounds cliche, but I'd say follow your dreams but work tirelessly as you follow them. I'm doing exactly what I wanted to do in college, and I didn't let the naysayers discourage me! I did, however, learn to be unafraid of failure. I didn't have any publishing or teaching connections whatsoever, so I reached out to every literary agent and educator I knew to learn more about a possible career in those fields.