When did you start blogging and why? February 21, 2004. My first post is on My Other Blog. In 2002, our home burned down and we lost 90% of our possessions, including some biographical notes I wrote for my kids. I chose a blog as a fine place to replace—and keep!—my notes. Those notes became little stories. The little stories became a book—for my kids and grandkids. It’s part of their roots. I don't add to that blog anymore. But I was hooked on blogging, so I started writing from the hip and the rest is history.
How do you use blogging to build friendships? I like it that My First Wife and I have developed some good friendships through blogging. When I comment on other blogs, I try to be respectful. I think that's how the best blog relationships develop. I've never met a fellow blogger, but I've talked on the phone, e-mailed, snail-mailed, exchanged greeting cards and that sort of thing.
C, who first pointed me to blogging, has been my "online friend" since 1993—before blogging. My First Wife and I consider her "family" even though we've never met.
Who do you read every day, rain or shine? Don't ask me for a favorite. I keep a long list of entertaining bloggers, and I like to cover the whole list a couple of times or so during the course of a week.
How do you feel about meeting bloggers in real life? I'm anxious to meet C and her family, J, H, M, R, C, R, C, Z, J, W, and T—not necessarily in that order. What a great time we can have! You know why? Because they all have their heads on straight—which means if we all get together I can be the designated loon.
Is there one blogger in particular that you find mirrors yourself? Well, M e-mailed me once, asking for some writing advice. It looks like she took some of it. I'm still flattered.
How would you describe your writing style? Positive, fun, down-to-earth, conversational. I like to think outside the box; put a twist on things.
If you could spend time with just one person…? Well, besides Jesus? Besides Joseph in Genesis? Besides Martin Luther King, Jr.? Joyce Meyer? My grandkids? Victor Borge? Ann Coulter? Moses? Max Lucado? Mother Teresa? Besides King David? A former high school girlfriend? Dr. Francis Collins? Muhammad Ali? Barry Goldwater? Ronald Reagan? The Apostle Paul? James Michener? ("Mel Gibson, what were you thinking!?")
We get asked this question a lot, don't we? I keep changing the answer. So just for the heck of it, will somebody pick a gorgeous chick for me.
What don't you write about? Why? Politics, because who am I going to impress? I have my opinions, mind you. I don't write dirty stuff.
What is your favorite thing that you wrote? In My Other Blog, I like The Last Batter and Dances With Wolves and Sleeps With Snakes—true adventures. In this blog, it's a toss-up between Street Names and Ferner Sardeesh —exercises in fiction.
I enjoyed writing—and re-writing—all my posts. That's why they're posted.
Have you written anything controversial? Not that I remember. But here's a question: how many illegal aliens are in the US, and how many are from the Middle East? If you think only Mexican people are here illegally, you're prejudiced and under-educated. Here's another question: How's that for controversial?
Are you and your blogging persona the same person? No. I originally opened "Writing From the Hip" as a place to practice fiction. Pancake Flats is a fictitious place and so are all the people who live here. But we've all become such good friends that sometimes I think they're standing right beside me.
I'm bolder when I type. The "real me" is shy, reticent and (way back) behind the scenes. It takes awhile to open up and talk with new people. But when I do get started—stand back!
Have you ever anonymously posted on a site to flame them? No. And come to think of it I haven't practiced my fiction in quite awhile, either. Stay tuned.
If you had a super power, what would it be? Wisdom.
Which five bloggers do you want to answer these questions? Well, let's see: him, him, him. Uh, her, and him. Oh, yeah, and her, too, f'sure!