👤 This week’s INF interview is with Edmond Wright Jr. In his own words...
Edmond Wright Jr. is an INFJ poet creating freestyle poetry as an outlet for his emotions, for over 30 years online and offline. Currently, he is working on a dystopian story and as always, more poetry. Other than poetry, Edmond listens to music, analyzes human interactions, watches SpongeBob Squarepants, and sadly responds using cheesy references.
🎧 We also followed our interview with a podcast conversation -> listen here.
Hey Edmond, it’s nice to be speaking with you :) So can we get things started by finding out where in the world you currently reside? Is this also where you grew up?
I currently live in North Carolina, USA. I was born in Charleston, South Carolina, I stayed in SC until 1998.
I would love to visit the Carolinas one day. How has your experience in North Carolina differed from that of South Carolina? What was the reason you moved to NC from SC?
North Carolina seems more at home to me, more laid back. However, there are many places in both states with busy and easygoing areas. I haven’t discovered half of either state. I just feel different here in NC than in my home state.
Do you remember what you were like as a child?
[I was happy, confused, manipulative. A “normal” child if there’s such a thing. Perhaps I should say I don’t think there was anything remarkable about my childhood. ]
I’m curious to know more about the ‘confused’ part, if you wouldn’t mind sharing more on that front?
Confused as in, no mentor or role models that I held close to. So it seemed learning how to be human outside of basic operations was difficult. I was in the “street” very little but I learned some things there. Wish there was an authority figure I could have related to instead of making things up as I went.
What was school like for you? And how were your teenage years as a whole?
Public school was horrific. Not the work, the people, interactions. It wasn’t all bad but dealing with people as a naive youth was stressful. I moved to a new city after seventh grade and I was never the same. Guess that when hormones started really kicking in as well. I began to be depressed in the eight grade and that’s when the thought of suicide appeared. Even before, I spent many days after school playing classical music and crying into my pillow wondering why I was a weirdo.
My teenage years as a whole were best described as confusion and wilderness.
Moving to a new city for anyone at that age (in fact, any age, even as an adult) is a real adjustment. Thanks for being so honest here - I’m sure others can relate. How did you get into classical music? Did it at all help you whilst going through this difficult time?
I don’t know when I first heard classical music or decided it was good. I would listen to it while daydreaming, doing homework, wanted a little of comfort, etc. It think it did help me stay calm. Aware of my surroundings.
What words, or phrases, would you use to describe your current self?
Creative, Distant, Virtually a textbook INFJ, Searching, I feel I should have more but I don’t at the moment.
No, thank you, that’s just perfect as it is. When did you first realise that you were an introvert? How did this happen?
[I first learned in detail regarding introversion via community college. I was introduced to the Myers-Briggs test and I had a great counselor, and another influential Gentleman by the name of Donald Fowler. He introduced me to several things including the book, “Please Understand Me 2 by David Keirsey. He gave me a copy but I loved it so much I went and bought another copy and gave it to him because I felt the book was too important not to have. ]
Wow, I’m so glad that you had a counselor, and such a great one. So, you’ve mentioned that you’re an INFJ already, and around when you took the Myers-Briggs test. When was this exactly?
Around 2014. Before then I just thought I was a crazy alien or a really confused human on the wrong planet.
Has discovering you were an INFJ impacted you in any way? If so, how?
It helps me understand my foundation and why I interact with this world the way I do. Before the test, I felt like nothing I did, said, felt, was “normal”.
What qualities do you think you share with other INFJs and INFPs?
Introspection, ability to feel someone’s energy, pick up on things being said with and without words I’m sure there’s more.
What were your favourite subjects at school? What did you study at university/college?
Psychology, creative writing, english, computer programming, and sociology. All at community college. I loved community college compared to public school. More freedom.
What are you spending your time on at the moment?
Always writing poetry on my blog and trying to see if a poetry book would be worth it. Twitter again, this is the fifth time I’ve started over. Finding a career instead of another dead-end job. Introspection. Very slowly trying to bring more order to my life in regards to how I spend my time and treat my body.
I’ve enjoyed reading some of the poetry on your blog. When was it you started writing poetry? What inspired you to do so?
Well thank you very much for reading. I can’t remember exactly when I started writing poetry but I know my mother got me started on it. I remember handing her poems from as early as 1995 ish. Feeling like an outcast and not wanting people to laugh at my naivety, I decided paper was more friendly.
Was there a moment in your life when you made a drastic change?
Marriage, divorce, belief in a higher power, atheism, belief in a higher power again, deciding to quit Zoloft (anti-depressant, anti-anxiety) cold turkey months ago, challenging some beliefs I’ve held most of my life.
You’ve mentioned classical music and poetry already… Do you have a preferred creative/artistic outlet? Can you tell us a bit about this?
Creating music is always fun. I freestyle around the house all the time. Poetry has been a great outlet for over twenty plus years. I can write short stories and when I get into them it’s fun. So yeah, writing and music are the main ones.
Would you describe yourself as a 'highly sensitive person' (or an empath)?
HSP all the way although I’m not sure about the empath part. Still learning more about myself.
[I’ll be honest, the two terms seem inter-changeable, though ‘Introvert, Dear’ make a distinction in this article -> https://introvertdear.com/news/the-difference-between-introverts-empaths-and-highly-sensitive-people/]
Do you have a personal definition of 'success'? What does being 'successful' look like to you?
I’m really lost as what I thought success was may not be. I don’t know if this is the same but if I could find a way to make poetry, songwriting, being goofy, or discussing life with people, profitable so I can have stability, and help others choose life, it would be life-changing.
What about 'happiness' - do you have a sense of what that looks like?
Not really. I know that staying in an egotistical mindstate isn’t it.
Do you like to plan things, or are you more of a go-with-the-flow type of person?
I really lean towards planning things but I can go with the flow if there’s no pressure.
And what does your 'perfect Sunday' (or Saturday) look like?
Music, Writing, Alone time. Peace.
That sounds lovely. Is there anything you've read, watch or listened to recently, that you've loved? (Whether a book, blog, podcast, film/TV show, etcetera).
I recently fell back in love with a Roots album, “Game Theory”. Spongebob has always been a favorite and I’m really digging Squidward at the moment.
And do you have any favourite blogs or podcasts?
No. I get overloaded so I kind of don’t consume a lot of different media sources but maybe one day I can do better.
I get over-loaded, too, I can totally relate. I use to consume a lot, but I try to keep a raincheck on things now.
How about favourite movies or TV shows? Anything you've seen recently that you'd recommend?
The Matrix Trilogy, Black Mirror, Enemy of the State, Spongebob, So many! I am not a TV person so there are many shows and movies “everyone” has seen but I haven’t, even decades later.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that at all :) If you could go back in time and meet "you" back in 2010, is there any advice that you'd give this younger self?
Divorce her now. Stop taking medication for anxiety. Exercise. Stop deleting accounts when you get stressed out. Be friends before becoming serious with anyone. Don’t count on anyone to help you, ever. Don’t isolate yourself.
If you could give one or two pieces of advice to your follow INFs, what would they be?
Stop thinking about being weird or unique and concentrate on improving who you are regardless of what this illusion called life brings.
What does 'self-care' mean for you? How do you practise it?
Knowing what’s best for me so I don’t overextend myself and when I tell someone no. Making sure they know I mean no. Boundaries, boundaries, and boundaries.
I use the word ‘over-extend’ too, I love that. This stuff is so important.
It’s been really fun to interview you, Edmond. Where can others find and connect with you online?
Twitter at EdmondWriter (@EdmondWrite)
Poetry blog at https://rawemotiondough.wordpress.com/
Last FM at https://www.last.fm/user/harrishalting
And lastly, is there anything else you'd like to share before you go?
Thank you for inviting me to do this interview and join this community. I do not have a support system or a mentor. If anyone has any tips or assistance they can provide I will appreciate it. I want to have a career instead of 9-5 hell in retail. I find it amazing how lives can be changed by meeting folks and having the right connections. We see energy, potentials, people who don’t need handouts but a handup to excel; I don’t need any handouts but a hand up is always appreciated and perhaps one day I can do the same to multitudes of people as I am familiar with feeling lost and abandoned. Let us build a lasting foundation and improve lives together.
Thank you, Edmond, for taking part in this and sharing your story with us. It’s been an honour.
Jas + Edmond
subscribe to INF club
a free bi-monthly(ish) newsletter, with articles + stories + tidbits to help you grow