Spotlight On Writers - Kathy Whipple, interview at

Spotlight On Writers – Kathy Whipple

Spotlight On Writers

Kathy Whipple


  1. Where, do you hail from?
I’ve been pondering that question my whole life. I was born in Groton, Connecticut but my father was a submariner with the US Navy and we moved across country and overseas every two or three years—Virginia, California, Georgia, Hawaii, Washington, Guam. The one thing my homes had in common was they were all naval bases by the sea. There isn’t a town or country that feels like home, but the ocean sure does. I’m quite sentimental about it. As a child I sat on the beach and contemplated who I wanted to be and how I wanted to live my life. I am who I am because of those conversations with the sea.
  1. What is the greatest thing about the place you call home?

I live in Boise, Idaho. We moved here twenty years ago for a job and stayed for children and grandchildren. I’ve found my place among the small community of writers, artists and musicians. I play in a jazz saxophone quartet, a community band, and in the pit, on occasion, for musical theatre.

Boise has its own kind of desert beauty and a small town feel. Strangers talk in line at the grocery store and hold the doors open for each other. Neighbors are friendly and gather socially. Family ties are strong and deep.

  1. What turns you on creatively?

Travel inspires my creativity. It’s a great, wide, wonderful world and I’m naturally curious. My husband and I started traveling in earnest a few days after we retired and moved to Indonesia for six months. Since then we’ve traveled in three month blocks. I’m currently back in SE Asia—Cambodia, Indonesia and Malaysia.

I’m inspired by how others live and play and work and worship. In every country, I meet the loveliest people who teach me about what is important and sacred. I’m inspired by the woman who sells cloth at the market or the tailor who rides with a sewing machine strapped to the back of his bicycle, by the chefs who plate their rice in the shape of a cone to represent the mountains. Life is meaningful. Humans everywhere are connected by our similarities.

  1. What is your favorite word, and can you use it in a poetic sentence?

I’ve never had a favorite word and I’m not a poet but I’m drawn to the word offering.

The host at my guesthouse places a flower offering outside my door each morning and I feel her blessing me.

  1. What is your pet peeve?

I dislike clutter in my own spaces. Possessions don’t mean much to me—perhaps from moving so often as a child. Clutter in my home makes me tense and anxious. But I’m fine with it elsewhere. Other people’s messy spaces don’t bother me.

  1. What defines Kathy Whipple?

I like people. I like gathering people, meeting people, talking to them, and connecting. People fascinate me more than anything. But I also crave time alone. I rise early to write in the quiet mornings. I take long walks along the Boise river, long swims at the pool. It’s in these moments that I compose my stories and sort out the meaning of life.

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This publication is part 354 of 403 in the series Spotlight On Writers