Wise the Simple is a new blog found here at wisethesimpleblog.wordpress.com. Written by a self-proclaimed “daydreaming little nerd of a wallflower,” Wise the Simple is a blog about life, faith, imagination, and geekery. The following interview was conducted on October 23rd, 2014.
I’m so honored to have you here. If I may jump right in — what made you want to start a blog?
(laughs) Well, it’s been a long time coming, that’s for sure. I always wanted to be a writer, ever since I was a kid. I’d scrawl out stories on reams of continuous form paper — you remember the kind with perforations on the sides? — and illustrate it all with crude little drawings made with those scented Mr. Sketch markers.
Were you a big reader?
Oh, of course! A large portion of my childhood was spent nose-in-book. I remember once in third grade during silent reading time, I looked up from my book (a Brian Jacques Redwall novel, as I recall) and all the other kids were gone. I asked the teacher where everyone was, and she, in utter surprise, said, “Oh, they all went out for recess a long time ago!” I was so completely immersed in the story that I missed the stampede of twenty-odd children hurl through the tiny classroom. More than that, I would regularly keep reading as I walked down the hall, letting other kids jostle past me while I carefully made my way down the stairs. A teacher yelled at me once, said I would fall and break my neck. (laughs)
Did you keep up reading writing throughout adolescence? Were you a good student?
Yes, I was a very good student. And I kept reading and writing throughout elementary and middle school. It was somewhere between high school and college where it all kind of dwindled.
I think that along with puberty came my sense of inadequacy, and that fear hindered my ability and desire to create. I still read; I read books, but mostly those that were assigned in English classes. It was writing that took a huge hit around that time.
And what brought that desire back?
(thinks silently) I’m not exactly sure. College was a rough time for me. My social anxiety on campus coupled with unrest back home drove my introverted self further inward in an attempt to hide from the world like a frightened snail. This led to me to rediscover the fantastical realms of books, television, and movies, which in turn, reinvigorated my sense to create something of my own.
“I’m a writer!” I would exclaim to myself.
“No, you’re not. What have you written lately?” Cue deflating pride.
So, after a long hiatus, I sat down and wrote. Story ideas, poetry, song lyrics, journal entries. Then in my senior year, I found enough free time in my schedule to enroll in a creative writing class. It was glorious — like seeing an old friend after years apart. With a cheery outlook, I began the slow process of retraining my atrophied writing muscles. (smiles broadly) And so here I am! Still shaking the layers of dust off my writer’s cap, but continually gaining confidence with each new pen stroke.
Now, I know that writing is not your career. That is to say, it’s not how you earn your living, correct?
But you still identify as a writer.
I do, but a highly cloistered one. (laughs) That good ol’ reliable sense of inadequacy continues to hang on, so most things I’ve worked on are either hidden away “For My Eyes Only” or discarded halfway through. Which finally, thankfully, circuitously brings us back to your first question: “Why start a blog?”
Hey, I said it was a long time coming! (laughs) But yeah, I have some friends who blog, and who have tried to get me to blog for years. I’ve always been curious to try, but again, that fear of failing or of not being up to snuff kept holding me back. I hope that blogging will help me to not only increase my productivity, but also become more confident as a writer and as a person. (makes grand gesture with her hands and puts on an affected voice) As I release my little word-children out into the wild! (laughs)
So those are the goals you have set for yourself in doing this blog, but what do you hope that others will get from it? What is your blog’s mission statement, as it were?
That’s a great question. As I looked into starting a blog, I kept seeing advice articles asking “What new do you have say?” or “What makes your blog different?” And to be honest, that put me off quite a bit.
“I don’t have anything new to offer,” I would think. “I don’t have anything to say that hasn’t already been said a thousand times before.”
But after awhile, I just thought, “You know what? Screw it. Sure, I’ll be treading fields well-trod, but I am the only me, so whatever I write will be written in a way only I could write it. That will be what makes my blog different.” (makes a face) Does that make sense? Is that completely cheesy? I found myself a loophole, and I’m taking it! (laughs) It was the only way for me to bypass the inadequacy monster from putting a stop to the whole plan.
Anyway, my goal is to use this blog as a place to put forth ideas — whether it’s musings about life, nascent story/creative writing concepts, or my thoughts on certain books, movies, and television shows. With any luck, like-minded people will find interest in what I have to say or show me what they have written about such topics, and together we can develop good discussion over it all. And maybe along the way I will find something new to say. Who knows? I’m willing to ride this wave wherever it may lead, and hope that you, dear reader, will join me.
Wise the Simple, it has been a pleasure having you here. Thank you for taking the time to speak with me.
Oh no, the pleasure is all mine. Truly. I mean, your sole purpose was to help me give expository background information, which I can now use as a framework to build my blog upon.
Um… I’m sorry?
You’re… you’re not real. Didn’t I tell you that? I… created you.
See, I wanted my first blog post to be a kind of primer so readers would know a bit about me and where I’m coming from, but I didn’t want to have it just be: “Hi. Welcome to my blog. Here is some stuff about me.” So, I thought I would try to punch it up with an interview-ish type narrative structure. … You’re not mad, right?
… That explains a lot, actually. I can’t imagine anything about my life outside of what is happening right now. That’s probably because I don’t really have one.
Well, I’m sorry. I didn’t realize you didn’t know.
I can’t believe I didn’t realize it!
I mean, my name is Boldy McInterviewer.
You would think that would’ve been a red flag…
Well, regardless, it really has been great.
I really am quite sorry. You’ve been a champ.
No, thank you.
We should really wrap this up now.
Yes, of course.
… I’m not going to disappear into the aether once this interview is finished, right?
Oh no, of course not, buddy! You’ve done so much in helping me with this first blog post. I’ll definitely bring you back for more in the future. You and I are in this together now.