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CSL Interview Blog: Jiawei Wang and Jared Schapansky

Jared Schapansky is a Canadian writer living in Alberta right now. He has a day job which is digging ditches and filling them in again. In terms of his career as a writer, he essentially have two different writing careers. The first one is that he has been supervising a unit in the provincial Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. He writes and edits briefing notes and correspondence for and on behalf of the Minister and Deputy Minister. Furthermore, He has also written three novels, as well as a host of short stories and poems. When I interview him, I try to focus on a specific theme which is about challenges and problems occurred in his own life and writing career.  I am really curious and interested in how a writer deal with setbacks and stress. And Jared is also willing to tell truth and share his stories with me.

You really have a strong passion in writing. I wonder what led you to become a writer.

        “I’ve been passionately involved in writing since I was around ten years old. I was a big reader when I was younger especially, and this led me to take specialty classes in high school and university surrounding both literature and writing. So at that time, I determined to be a writer one day.”

What kind of challenges have you got since you began writing?   What did you learn from it?

         “I think the main challenge to overcome as a writer is procrastination and lethargy. You don’t always have an external deadline, so it’s easy to put things off you shouldn’t put off. It’s easy to become lethargic after a while if you don’t experience success. For me personally, I haven’t quite overcome these challenges, but I have learned a major lesson about not wasting time. You sometimes learn that lesson when you’ve already wasted a lot of time, and there’s no way to get it back.”

I really hope you will overcome your challenges in the near future. Do you have much pressure in your life? And which aspects do put pressure on yourself? How do you reduce it

          “For me, I do experience stress related to a slightly irrational feeling of being ‘trapped’ in a creatively unfulfilling job that doesn’t especially utilize my abilities. I also experience stress related to getting older while I continue working on achieving goals outside of work.  I feel less pressure when I work diligently on my personal writing because it provides a feeling of ‘moving forward’.”

What kind of issues and problems would you better avoid when you are writing?

         “I’m not sure a writer needs to “avoid” any issues. It depends on the writer and it depends on the type of writing. I personally avoid contentious issues in my work, because my opinions aren’t really strong enough to warrant the backlash I’d be courting. Another thing I need to avoid is stagnation: periods where you don’t write, or periods where you always write the same thing or in the same style. That stymies a person’s development, I believe.”


       Jared is a kind man and a professional writer honestly. He talked about his experiences in his life, which also let me learn more about him. He is a truly optimistic man though he also gets trouble and problems in his life.  Much stress put on him and he is really able to cope with it. Through this interview,  I understand that everyone always meet various difficulties and setbacks but it will be helpful to your life as long as you try to solve them.  His experiences could give me inspiration to have a positive altitude facing setbacks and stress. My favorite sentence is ” You sometimes learn that lesson when you’ve already wasted a lot of time, and there’s no way to get it back.”, which makes me realize the importance of time and we should not waste our time in making mistakes.  Although he is still dealing with his trouble, I believe he will be able to overcome it one day.


Click here to see all the member interviews.

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