Blake Kimzey, Episode 6
Follow Your North Star
“A professional is just an amateur who didn’t give up.”
Blake Kimzey is an author, entrepreneur, & a fascinating guy. He has a lot to teach us about living a life of creativity and following your north star.
Hosts & Guests
About This Episode
Blake Kimzey founded and directs Writing Workshops Dallas & Writing Workshops Paris and is a co-founder of The Big Texas Read. Named one of D Magazine’s Artists to Learn From, he is a graduate of the MFA Program at UC Irvine; Blake also sits on the Board of the Elizabeth George Foundation and received a generous Emerging Writer Grant from the Foundation. His fiction has been broadcast on NPR, performed on stage in Los Angeles, and published by Tin House, McSweeney’s, VICE, Longform, Redivider, D Magazine, The Dallas Morning News, Green Mountains Review, Short Fiction, Smokelong Quarterly, FiveChapters, The Lifted Brow, Hobart, Puerto del Sol, The Los Angeles Review, The Masters Review, Booth, Faultline, Moon City Review, FLAUNT Magazine, Malibu Magazine, Day One, PANK, Fiction Southeast, Surreal South ’13, and selected by Pulitzer Prize-winner Robert Olen Butler for inclusion in The Best Small Fictions 2015. Blake’s collection of short tales, Families Among Us, an Indie Bestseller, was published by Black Lawrence Press in 2014. He is working on his first novel and is represented by Ryan Harbage. Blake has been awarded fellowships to attend the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and the Vermont Studio Center and a generous grant from Americans for the Arts Foundation. He has taught in the Creative Writing Programs at SMU, UT-Dallas and UC-Irvine. Follow him on Twitter @BlakeKimzey, or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blake starts out telling the Bro’s about his journey from college to work in the “cubicle farm” to his eventual embrace of writing and a life built around creativity. They talk about what gave him & his wife, Danielle (a very talented artist in her own right), the bravery to make that leap.
He tells the Bro’s how that journey eventually led him to entrepreneurship and the founding of Writing Workshops Dallas, and how that side hustle became his main hustle. They discuss Blake’s current creative endeavors, and the Bro’s have to hide their jealousy and their boners as he describes candid conversations with big shot Hollywood executives!
Towards the end, they discuss a shared love of cliches and pithy sayings. Blake tells what it means to be a man in his world as well as how he takes care of himself. They also discuss spirituality and how it has affected their respective journeys. Blake says that at some point you have to be okay just not knowing. Enoch’s clearly not as comfortable in that space!
In a parting wisdom and another pithy phrase, Blake shares that “comparison is the thief of joy.” That seems as good a place to end as any.
Blake’s Book Recommendations:
Other People, Places, and Things Mentioned:
- Danielle Kimzey. Blake’s wife. Seriously, check out her art. It’s fantastic.
- Texas A&M University
- Brookhaven College
- Olive Garden, where Blake slung breadsticks with a head full of writing dreams.
- University of Iowa
- University of California, Irvine
- Raymond Carver
- Kurt Vonnegut
- The Great Gatsby
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad
- University of Texas, Dallas
- The Frugalwoods
- Mr. Money Mustache
- Drizzt Do’urden & RA Salvatore
- How I Built This by Guy Raz
- The Calm App
- Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
- Writers: Enoch Daniel & Sosh Woodbine
- Producer: Enoch Daniel
- Theme Music:“The Future is Ours” by Scott Holmes Music is licensed by CC BY-NC 4.0.
- Sound Effects: “Meditation” by eliasyian & “record scratch” by luffy both licensed by CC BY 3.0.
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