Graduate Alumni Interview: Adam Carter

Adam Carter,

MFA Creative Writing
Spring 2019


Picture of Adam Carter standing behind a lecture podium with microphones

Adam Carter is a Master of Fine Arts graduate from the University of South Florida. While in Tampa he founded Writers with Conviction, a creative writing program at the Zephyrhills Correctional Facility. He currently lives in Indianapolis, Indiana, where he works as a State Public Defender. His writing can be found in Midwestern Gothic, Florida English Journal, and most recently in New Southern Fugitives. Prior to his USF degree, he obtained a Masters of English from Indiana University, Purdue University, Indiana, a Juris Doctor from Notre Dame Law, and a Bachelor of Psychology from Indiana University, Bloomington. You can follow his work on Twitter @CarterInIndiana.

What is your position now?

Deputy Public Defender, Public Defender of Indiana.

Why did you come to the USF graduate program?

The fully funded USF MFA, located in sunny Tampa and filled with brilliant professors, was a no-brainer for me.

What was a unique opportunity you had at USF?

Began a prison writing program at Zephyrhills Correctional Facility under the tutelage of Dr. Lennon and Dr. Fleming.

How did USF prepare you for your current position?

My work at USF significantly improved my legal writing skills. In fact, I am giving an attorney lecture on the power of storytelling in legal writing in September. I also write creatively in my free time with the input of both local writers and former classmates. I have a new essay accepted for publication in the (hopefully near) future.

What advice would you give to new graduate students in the program?

Use it as an opportunity to explore. I came in intending to focus on a novel, but soon developed more interest in creative nonfiction and the prison instruction. I still write fiction, but finding new passions was an equally valuable portion of my education.