Interview Post & Contest Winner

Hello, beautiful readers, and happiest Monday to you all!

Today I would like to send a huge thank you to everyone who participated in the recent Halloween Writing Contest. It was the first contest of this type to be put off on ScaleitSimple and it was so wonderful to see bloggers stretching their creative writing muscles by giving this a go. You all did such a wonderful job and your support for one another as always was very heartwarming and motivating to me and my writing.

Today’s post is a very special interview with the winner of the contest. Michael Erickson from The Ink Owl, you can check out Michaels winning story here.

Congratulations Michael and thank you for taking the time to answer some of these questions for my readers and inspiring others to try fiction writing in any capacity.

“This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until its done. It’s that easy, and that hard.”
― Neil Gaiman

Searching for Happiness (1).jpg

Please tell us about your blog, why you enjoy writing and maybe a little about what inspires you to write.

The Ink Owl is a blog dedicated solely to my writing. I’ve been wanting to create a forum to explore my abilities for years now. My first attempt at blogging wasn’t all that impressive. (We’ll just sweep that under the rug.) So I decided to live life for a while and come back to the idea. After a few life changing events occurred I found the inspiration and time to create The Ink Owl. Now I have the opportunity to dive into my writing.

Writing has always been something I’ve loved to do. It was challenging to learn how to write. I’ve struggled with grammar, sentence structure, and, conveying my thoughts in a coherent manner. But it’s something that has always driven me to look at the world and experience it all. There is something about putting ink to paper, or fingers to a keyboard that makes life magical. I think it is the possibility of a new and undiscovered world waiting to pop out of your fingertips. The thought that you’re transforming the ordinary world around you.

Everyday life has to be my constant source of inspiration. It comes from walking around my neighborhood with my kids, baking cookies for the neighbors, or going to work. I feel an intense inspiration that comes from the everyday happenings in life. Not that my life is straight out of a Michael Crichton story or anything. But there’s always something I learn and have to write down every day. I can’t not stay up at night writing about what I’ve experienced or something new my mind has created.

As you may know, ScaleitSimple is all about positive vibes. Could you share three things that have made a big impact in your life in regards to your happiness? This could be lessons you have learned, advice you would give to a friend or even a concept or quote you have heard that stuck with you.

My children. I have two boys, Ira and George. Sometimes I’ll wake up before they do and just wait for them to call my name. There’s something about the way children look at the world. They make even the most mundane task phenomenal. So much of their raw energy and zeal for life breathes inspiration into my imagination.

My work. I work in a cancer hospital on the recovery unit. I’ve interacted with thousands of people. Each are influenced by cancer either as a patient, friend, family member, or supporter. Each day is different, with new challenges to face and new people to learn from. I never quite know what’s in store for those twelve hours. There is something about cancer patients. Their demeanor sets them aside from any other patient out there. (Trust me I’ve worked in almost every hospital unit possible.) I think true humanity occurs through their diagnosis and choice to fight it. Not every case I have has a terminal ending, but each has a humility that comes with fighting for their lives. Every time they stop me to offer advice on life I internalize it, imprinting it upon my mind so I don’t forget.

My wife. She is my rock. If I hadn’t fallen hard for her I would have never been given a voice with which to write. I fell in love with her through hand-written notes we sent to each other for almost two years. It was between the lines and while waiting for the post to arrive once a week that I learned how to pen down the expressions of my heart and soul.

Do you have any current goals for your writing? Are there any tips, advice or encouragement that you would send to someone who is trying to build their writing confidence?

Well, there is always the obvious goal: publishing my writing. But I have a goal of getting my writing out into the world and seeing what people I’ve never met think of it. I’ve only ever had close friends and family read my writing. It’s been a somewhat grueling two and a half months that my blog has been up. It’s terrifying knowing that people I’ve never met are reading what I’ve written. And at the same time, I feel liberated seeing other people’s reactions and responses. It is time to get my writing out of its shell.

I also have a goal to see the depth and breadth of what I am capable of doing with my writing. I want to write it all, and I might as well do it here. So if anyone reading this decides to stick around for the ride you’re in for an adventure.

As far as advice or tips I’d give to others, it would have to be: don’t give up. I realize I’m at the tip of the iceberg. The adventure has just started. But I wouldn’t be here if I had given into my inner demons and laid down my pen forever. I came across a popular quote from Thomas Mann that’s just sort of stuck with me.

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”- From Essays of Three Decades.

No quote could be more true for me that this, but understanding this gives me power over my weaknesses. Sometimes I read the quote over and over and it helps me overcome my roadblocks, both in writing and in life.

So if you want to write, but it seems impossible, know you’re not alone. Know that as you work hard, you and your writing will change. Keep writing, no matter what pops up to try and stop you. You’ll never know where your words will take you until you try.

Please share anything else you would like.

I can’t thank ScaleItSimple enough for this opportunity. It’s been stressful, thrilling, and eye-opening. I hope it is the first of many things yet to come.If you’d like a good laugh at

If you’d like a good laugh at strange humor, or see my inspiration for writing first hand, follow my other creative outlet. I am on Instagram under the username: @historyaccordingtomike. There you can follow my life experiences illustrated by toy dinosaurs, see just how nerdy I am when it comes to all things Sci-fi, and how much I enjoy parenting.

Shout out to the runners up of the contest, Fiction is Food and My Bookish Life. You both came in very close to winning.

Stay tuned for the next creative collaboration that is coming in December when ScaleitSimple hosts its first Christmas Blog Party! Hope to see you all there.

Keep writing! Keep creating!


  1. inkowlme | 7th Nov 16

    Reblogged this on The Ink Owl and commented:
    Hey check it out! I won my very first writing contest!

    • Gary | 7th Nov 16

      Congratulations Michael, great story and excellent interview….oh and even better to have hooked up as the result of Stephs competition.

      Looking forward to more of your work.

      • inkowlme | 8th Nov 16

        Thank you! I’m excited to be following you as well! This was a brilliant competition that has opened so many doors for all of us. Lets make the world a more interesting place with our writing!

        • Gary | 9th Nov 16

          My pleasure, thoroughly enjoyed it, although flash fiction is not really my expertise. Still, practice and all that! You picked a bad month to follow mine lol…NaNo so I’m likely going blog quiet for a few weeks. After that then if you find any links to this flash fiction business let me I know…although might go back and try the blog battle again now too 🤔

  2. cookandenjoyrecipes | 7th Nov 16

    Awesome well done Michael. Sorry, I missed the deadline to nominate, but wanted to nominate The Ink Owl. Glad you won! Congratulations

    • inkowlme | 8th Nov 16

      Thank you so much! I’m just happy that you wanted to nominate me. 🙂 Aaaaand I just followed your blog, because FOOD of course! I’m excited to find and use your recipes!

      • cookandenjoyrecipes | 8th Nov 16

        Thanks inkowlme for following. Happy ‘hunting’ for something to eat. Enjoy.

  3. TrainOfThought | 7th Nov 16

    I was a runner up? YAAY! And wow, congratulations to the INK OWL!!! The entry was amazing!

    • StephJ | 7th Nov 16

      Yes you came in very close! Thanks for entering, I loved your story 🙂

    • inkowlme | 8th Nov 16

      Congrats on being a runner up!!!! And thank you! It was a great experience. I really enjoyed your entry as well. 🙂

      • TrainOfThought | 8th Nov 16

        Thanks, your entry was seriously OUT OF THIS WORLD, you deserved to win for sure!

  4. stephrichmond | 7th Nov 16

    Congratulations Michael, a well deserved winner.
    Steph thanks for a great competition, there’s great writers out there.

  5. eamj1103 | 8th Nov 16

    Congratulations Michael! What a fun contest. I would be so scared to write something like this for others to read.

    • StephJ | 9th Nov 16

      Never be afraid to try out creative writing, everyone has a story to tell 🙂

    • inkowlme | 16th Nov 16

      Thank you! I was totally in your shoes, still am! But to see how much others have enjoyed my writing, as well as given me great critiques on what to do or not do has helped me improve my writing so much. So so so much!
      Steph is so right, you have a story to tell, and other people can grow so much from it!

  6. janella2016 | 9th Nov 16

    Creative writing was something that I enjoyed growing up in school. I think that is one of the reasons why I enjoy blogging so much

    • StephJ | 9th Nov 16

      It is something I have been getting back into myself, and I have been really enjoying it 🙂

    • inkowlme | 16th Nov 16


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