Dear TC Boyle,
Hi + greetings. I'm kinda amazed they actually list your email address in the USC website. Pleasantly surprised. Anyway, I have one question for you: I'm in the process of applying to USC's Ph.D in creative writing program, but I wanted to know whether I'd actually be able to work with you (in some capacity) assuming I was accepted? I know you're a busy man and a prodigious writer so I don't have delusions. But it would be nice to know ahead of time what I might be potentially diving into: are you and the other USC fiction rockstars available, and willing, to interact with the doctoral students assuming they don't annoy the shit out of you, or you guys way too busy for that kind of thing?
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I think "After the Plague" is fantastic, by the way. I'd like to see more literary fiction writers embrace futuristic landscapes like that.
And goddamit, he responded in less than 24 hours:
That's a resounding yes. I teach the fall workshop each year so that incoming students, if they're so inclined, can begin with my class. And we work closely together. You've also got Marianne Wiggins, Aimee Bender and Percival Everett to work with subsequently. Not too shabby, I'd say.
I don't know what I find cooler, getting my first email from TC Boyle, or knowing that if I manage to get into USC program, I'd be able to work with the man who practically redefined the contemporary short story.