Caitlin McKenna
Caitlin McKenna
Caitlin became an avid reader in grade school and an avid writer soon after. Writing became her passion far beyond anything that was expected of her, and she has thought about the writing process more than most adults. This has given her a clarity unusual for someone her age.

I met Caitlin in Peru where she was accompanying her father at a week-long conference on shamanism and science. She had come for kind of a growing-up ritual with the Amazon River shamans to help her in her own journey toward college and independence. She now attends the University of British Columbia.

Interview Excerpts
Read the full interview :

"I knew I had an aptitude for writing but I hadn’t thought of doing it seriously until that moment.  I can’t explain it beyond that. It was a period of time when I was floating… and I was sort of lost as to what to do with my mind. I always need to be doing something with my mind, creating or absorbing, whether I’m reading a book or writing a story. I can’t just be idle…

"The 9-11 attack on the Trade Center… was quite a shock to me. Before that I thought the stuff on the news had little impact on my life, but this did. The whole world seemed to shudder and I needed to do something in my own world to reflect this shift. I couldn’t just let it go, I had to analyze it, to work it over, maybe start doing something different. Writing for me is just what came out of that. I guess… it’s hard to explain…

"My mental world always has to be expanding. I don’t like it being static or stagnant. I think people lose their imaginations that way…"

"I think the imagination is one of the most important things that humans have. It can do so much for us and it doesn’t ask anything in return, except that we use it…"

"Writing is a way of expanding my world and keeping it from falling still. You can read a lot, but if you expand it on your own, then you can do it anytime you want and you feel the sense of ... (sigh)... endless possibility, maybe…"

"The outside world is moving, always moving — maybe not forward exactly, but in all directions. We have to keep up in our heads — and I have to keep up in my head — so I started making my own worlds. I had to record them. That’s what writing is for me: recording the worlds in here, in my head…"


K.A. Applegate, Wikipedia
University of British Columbia, home page

Copyright © 2010, Lincoln Stoller. All rights reserved.