MA Advice (History)

Hi David –

I can’t help you decide which field to pursue, but you gotta admit ancient history, the American Revolution, and the Civil War are pretty different things. Speaking from experience, the folks in ancient history have a rougher time when it comes to writing the thesis, basically because of the small number of primary sources. But the closer you get to the present, those sources more or less explode. In a perfect world primary sources drive the thesis. 

Email Response from Steve Kreis, PhD

New Path

Almost done with Counselling Skills Certificate Course (Beginner to Advanced) on Udemy. I am already signed up for a few more like courses on Udemy.

Perhaps this is a new path for me.


I have worn out my welcome with American Public University. I have told them to place me in the non-degree seeking program so that I can take various classes in Humanities and/or History until I decide which specific Masters degree to pursue. I have also been looking at other Masters degrees that I might be more interested in.

A Review

I think you have talent. And that you have a story that people would want to read. Writing well is a hard state to reach, and it takes sustained learning and regular time if you want to support yourself with it. I remember your story. That line about meeting a serial killer stuck with me. I remember you talking about your mom, about your strained relationship with her. You had good hooks. Hooks do not make a story, but you can’t have a great story without then. I’m trying to be honest. I’m not trying to discourage you or evade a flat yes or no. Are you the best writer I ever read? No. Not yet. 😉 I don’t know how your writing would look after it had been through the professional editing process. I don’t know how successful it would be in the market. But what really matters is what you want to do. If you want to be a writer, if that fulfills you, and if you want to just be a writer, then go after it. Pursue it. No one starts out “a good writer,” in my opinion. That has to be learned. And not all writing fits all audiences. But to directly answer your question: Are you at the mountaintop? No. Can you get there? Yes. I hope this helped.

Looking up stuff today.

I was looking up MFA in Creative Writing and MA in English as well. Online only of course. For the present I will be going ahead with my MA in Humanities based on the Great Books of the Western World. It is with American Public University and seems to be a Philosophy degree…mostly.


I have decided to learn to fly. I have started with the Sporty’s Private Pilot Course for Ground School which will prepare me to take the written and oral tests as well as the Checkride once I get some seat time.

Minor in History

List of tests that I took to get a Minor in History from Excelsior College.


United States History I: Colonization to 1877

United States History II: 1865 to Present

Western Civilization I: Pre-History to 1678

Western Civilization II: 1648 to Present


Civil War and Reconstruction 3U

Introduction Modern Middle East

Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union 3U


I have always been good with my hands. I played the violin as a child. I’ve wanted to be a Surgeon since the 3rd grade. I am great a catching even though I look like I cannot catch.

I have been into Magic/Legerdemain/Prestidigitation/Sleight of Hand since I was very young. I keep my International Brotherhood of Magicians and Society of American Magicians memberships up to date.

Taught myself to be a mechanic and spent the rest of my life being a mechanic. Now I am retired and no longer want to be a mechanic.