Nate Ragolia

The interview room is well-appointed with two fine wingback chairs. The Doctor, of Doctor Who fame, the last of child of Gallifrey, sits across from me, shuffling through a stack of index cards.

The Doctor: So, Mr. Ragolia, thank you for being here.
Me: It’s my pleasure. What an honor.
The Doctor: Let’s get right to it shall we? Allons-y!
Me: Allons-y!
The Doctor: People want to know… Why do you, Nate Ragolia, write?

I touch my chin in a moment of thought manifest as motion.

Me: Because if I didn’t, this never happens.
The Doctor: I know a good bit about making things happen and not happen, but perhaps you’d elaborate?
Me: Well, there’s powerful magic in writing. On the page I can make anything happen. I can create an ideal future. I can help a parentless child learn self-reliance. I can teach a dog to talk. I can show people impossible things, and maybe, just maybe, they’ll seem a little less impossible.
The Doctor: Like being interviewed by the Doctor?
Me: Precisely.
The Doctor: So writing for you is like my TARDIS?
Me: You could say that. We both set out for new, previously unimagined experiences, hoping to show our companions the incredible boundlessness of human potential and creativity.
The Doctor: Fantastic!
Me: There are few rules to writing, aside from those grammatical, and the rules actually afford us the opportunity to push the boundary between fiction and reality.
The Doctor: Like the rules that apply to time travel in my universe.
Me: Right.
The Doctor: So, you write because it gives you a kind of superpower?
Me: That’s a lot of it, but it’s a deeply emotional thing too–a need for connection. As a writer, my main goal with anything I create is to engage with a reader. It’s always about grabbing another person and sharing with them… and usually I’m sharing some inner truth–either about myself or about life. Even a story about a skeleton coming back to life to steal people’s skin has some grain of pure humanity to it. Or even this interview.
The Doctor: I’d like to read that skeleton one.
Me: I should get around to writing it, then.
The Doctor: So, if writing is one side of a conversation, there’s always the risk that a reader would disagree with you, or simply ignore you altogether. Doesn’t that make writing risky?
Me: Of course. I’d prefer disagreement. There’s no worse feeling than presenting a crafted idea and receiving silence in return. It’s like asking a person out for a date. The “no” hurts, but the “no answer” can be devastating.
The Doctor: That’s all the time we have for now. Thank you for being here.
Me: No, thank you. This is bucket list stuff.

A strange, chugging whirr sounds behind the Doctor. A blue police box materializes inside the room.

The Doctor: You know, there’s plenty of time if we use it right. Want to go for a ride?
Me: Duh.

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