My life hasn't been conventional and it hasn't been linear. I've had to make it up as I've gone along, which has taught me a lot. If you don't accept the obvious options that are laid out for you, it's up to you to work out where you're going and to create your own specific rules and goals.
A lot of my students have been quite notable. Notable in both the personal sense - people who have changed my life - and notable in that many have gone on to enormous success in their writing careers. Whether or not I had a lot to do with those success stories, I'm very proud and happy for my former students getting on the map.