(Deep sigh, followed by chuckle.)
For what it’s worth, my dissertation has been online for about 12 years now. Now, for a bunch of reasons I won’t go into now, I wasn’t really thinking about turning it into a book. But if I had tried to make it into a book (I think its too late at this stage), I would have had to revise to a point where I would have ended up writing a new book based on the diss, meaning that the print version would be notably different from the online version. I think this is pretty much par for the course for anyone trying to take a thesis or a dissertation to the next level, creative or not. Conversely, I can think of nothing but good things that have come from putting my diss up online. A couple of different scholarly things have come my way over the years because of this, I get emails from people who stumble across the site once in a while, and I still get around 100-150 hits a week on the site. So for me, putting my diss up online had no downsides and modest positives.
I appreciate that these MFA folks are hoping to be the next Vonnegut or ZZ Packer or something. But I dunno, this guy seems to do okay and he puts all of his fiction out there for free.