In order to get Bridget Liszweski to agree to do an EarperView, I struck a deal with her. No, the deal did not involve me watching Killjoys, nor did it require me to deny being a Liszewbian. I said that I would do one if she did, and today, that bargain has come to collect. So if you’re thinking, “She only did these to talk about herself,” in a word, nope. Blame Bridget.
This has been rather difficult for me to do, since I’m much better talking about other people. But as always, I hope you enjoy.
Tell us a little bit about your non-Earper alter ego.
I live in Pittsburgh with my wife, Chris (who you may have met if you went to ClexaCon), and our cat, Graham.
He has excellent taste in TV.
When I’m not watching TV at home, I’m watching people watch TV at work. I’ve worked at a closed-captioning company for 16 years, currently as a supervisor, and before that I was a talent agent, proving I can’t do anything normal, including hold a typical job. For both jobs, my dad always used to just tell people that his daughter “worked in show business,” which works, I guess.
I was raised Catholic and attended 17(!) years of Catholic school, culminating with a degree in Theology…something that people are very surprised to find out when they meet me. Like most queer women, Catholic school filled me with a love of plaid (and uniforms in general) and a hatred of high school and THE PATRIARCHY. I grew up in a small town in West Virginia, and after attending college in Pittsburgh, I never went back.
Chris and I enjoy traveling, and my life has definitely been more interesting since we’ve gotten together. Because of her, I’ve been to Spain, Germany/Austria/Switzerland for the Christmas markets, Curacao, coastal California for our honeymoon, and driven cross-country from LA to PGH in four days. (Because of me, she got to see me fangirl over Emily Andras and meet Kat Barrell, so who’s to say who is contributing more?) We met at work 16 years ago, and it took me ten years to work up the nerve to ask her to go on a date with me. I decided I had enough of this decade-long crush and I would ask her out and get it out of my system. I didn’t expect her to say yes. Spoiler alert — that date ended pretty well.
I am a huge fan of Star Wars, Parks and Recreation, Community, Supergirl, and Buffy, just to name a few. (Fun fact — at my old job, I used to put a star of one of those shows on tape for auditions.) Two of the highlights of our honeymoon for me were seeing the Yoda statue at the Presidio and visiting the “Under Your Spell” park and bridge from Buffy’s “Once More with Feeling.”
I love that Yoda looks like a hair accessory on Chris.
In a perfect world, I would spend my days traveling the world, writing about my adventures and, of course, Wynonna Earp.
How did you find Wynonna Earp and the fandom?
I had seen promos for it on Lost Girl and also had managed to see some BTS videos before I actually watched the show. How the cast (and Evelyn) talked about the show just really got to me. I watched the first episode and loved it; second episode and was hooked. I binged 8 in 36 hours. As for the fandom, I had a Twitter account that I never used, and I think I saw the hashtag on one of the episodes. I tweeted about it being a cross between Buffy, Firefly, and Lost Girl, then kept going back. I found people to follow, and the rest is history.
Is this your first fandom?
It is! I have watched and been a big fan of other shows before, but I’ve never participated. The closest I came was being a lurker at The Kitten Board, where I read some fanfic that has stayed with me, including “Neverland” and one about the gang at a Xena fanfic convention (foreshadowing to a future EarperView).
What is your favorite fandom memory?
So many to choose from. All of Fan Expo, especially Sally from Fangirl Shirts verbally attacking me, which you can read about here. Some of the Twitter interactions I’ve had with Wynonna Earp-related things were extremely memorable. There was finding out that the show was renewed for season 3 in a craft store and quietly losing my shit amongst the yarn.
But ClexaCon was probably my favorite fandom memory, especially the photo ops.
You can read about this hilarious Carmilla one here.
I still get Twitter notifications for this photo.
Jill and Heidi came up with the idea for this WayHaught/Emily Andras photo. We all purchased WayHaughtVegas shirts — either just for the photo op or because we have excellent taste in attire — and the three of us and Michelle (a future EarperView) quickly explained our idea — four WayHaught fangirls fawning over Emily and ignoring the Way and the Haught. We somehow managed to convince Allison to be in it as well, and this photo was the result. I’ve almost managed to forgive those of us who okayed the picture that I’m barely even visible…
Bootcut jeans, all around.
What is your favorite con memory?
That’s a rough one. Who made up these questions?
Probably FanExpo and meeting Emily Andras while wearing the Fandras shirt. She was so incredibly nice and lovely, and I was so terrified. You can read about it in that same blog post as Sally shouting at me. (Uh, if anyone tells Emily about this, that’s not what happened. She hated the shirt and was so, so mean to me and didn’t ask if she could hug me. In fact, she challenged me to a duel.)
There’s also something to be said for ClexaCon and being surrounded by a metric ton of queer fangirls, many of whom I call friends. Whether they want me to or not.
What is your favorite Wynonna Earp/Earper activity?
Watching live and tweeting the episodes, obviously. But also the random interaction throughout the week with the official account and with Emily and the cast. And did I mention getting my blogs RT’d by the official account? That’s pretty big. And I love reading Bridget’s interviews with Emily and pulling out my favorite quotes. I also really enjoy writing about it, and I’m very sad that I’ve had to temporarily suspend the recaps because of life.
What has Wynonna Earp come to mean to you?
Ordinary people being amazing in extraordinary circumstances. Obviously, I’m talking about the characters in the show. Just…watch them. They’re all doing the best they can with what they have been given. Every single one. And they fuck up and it’s okay, because everyone works together to make it better. A family isn’t just your blood. It’s who you choose, too.
But I’m also talking about the fandom. At Fan Expo, I met some people that I now talk to every day and consider some of my closest friends. I hung out with most of them at ClexaCon, which cemented their place in my life. I love that I have found my people — these amazing, hilarious, talented, intelligent queer-lady fangirls. I’d be lost without them. They help me realize that I am not alone, something that I struggle with even though I am married to the most amazing woman I have ever met.
When I need to bounce ideas off someone, another fangirl’s eye to read something (because my wife is great at that stuff, but because she doesn’t watch the show, she doesn’t get all of the references), or just someone to tell me something I’ve written is or isn’t stupid, they’re there. And it means so much. I feel that this EarperView series has gotten a lot of positive response, and without them, it never would have happened. You’re all amazing, and your asses are top-shelf. And your faces. And also your hearts.
Are there any pictures you’d like to share of your Wynonna Earp experience?
Um, I’ve shared 843 pictures already. You want more?
Okay, fine. Remember that Evelyn Andrews selfie?
Sorry, Heidi, that I used one where you weren’t visible. But I look so good in this one.
Oh, and then there’s this “original Fandras” picture.
Everything about this picture is perfect.
This one is very special to me, for multiple reasons. This Fandras inception was Jill’s (middle) idea, and Sally (right) was kind enough to play along. I wonder what Dragon Con will bring…
Dolls or Doc?
They are both pretty great, but there is just something about Doc. I am as lesbian as it gets, and something about that man just does it for me. Also, I love his character and the amazing growth he’s shown this season.
Alternate answer: Both, at the same time.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you Fandras?
Eleventy million. I’m the one who was more nervous to meet Emily than the cast.
Describe why Fandras is a thing in 7 words or less.
Mutual love and respect; also, beaver overlord.
What is your favorite Earp sisters moment?
Whichever one is onscreen at the time and/or most recent. But I also have a fondness for all instances of BeaverDam!Wynonna and AnnoyedBabySister!Waverly.
How have you Earped your life?
Well, you’re reading this blog right now because of some life advice given to me based on Wynonna Earp. Sit back, grab some drinkable Christmas and a bonus blanket, and enjoy the tale.
Last year, I tried writing for another website. It…did not go well. For whatever reason, I had a hard time adhering to their standards (one was the word limit — go figure), and I just couldn’t get it. I tried to stay on in a different capacity, and I even submitted a story idea about Carmilla. They agreed to publish it (because no one else on the site had written about it), but then, a few days later, in a crazy “coincidence,” they published an article by someone else who had magically just discovered it. At this point, I was done. I sold a few things to the Bella Books blog (including one about Wynonna Earp), which was amazing and cool and I’m very grateful to Dana Piccoli for publishing them, but despite that win, I had just started to feel like I didn’t play well with others.
I briefly considered just doing stuff for my own blog, but I quickly dismissed that idea. No one would read it. People would think it’s stupid. Obviously, I can’t write recaps or someone would have me doing it by now. All of my writing is a Dumpster fire. You know, all that business. But I kept thinking about a Twitter exchange that I had with our dear overlord, Evelyn Andrews, after the cock-up America got itself into.
She probably didn’t mean softball.
I…just kept thinking about that. Why wait for someone to give me an opportunity? Why prove to strangers that I could be entertaining? Why not be my own Nicole? And so what if no one read them? I was writing them for myself, really, because I thought it was something I’d enjoy doing. So with the encouragement of a few friends, all of whom are past or future EarperViews, I decided to be my own Nicole and write what I wanted to write. And it’s been a very good choice.
So I did it, Emily! I was my own Nicole! Sorry it isn’t probably what you meant!
What’s the Earpiest thing you’ve ever done?
Hmm. This is a hard one, but I just watched Orphan Black, so maybe I am just emotionally devastated.
On my 23rd birthday, I drank so much tequila that I threw up. That’s pretty Earp-y.
Who would be your ultimate EarperView “get”?
We have now reached the point of this EarperView where I change up the questions. I didn’t want to make them all up myself, so I reached out to some pals.
Which character would you want to go on a 25-mile bicycle ride with and why? (@nedleysoffice)?
Well, I’m pretty out of shape right now, so probably Pregnant!Wynonna so I could keep up. But if that wasn’t a factor? Nicole. She’d take it seriously but also be nice and supportive if I ran into any problems. And she probably knows first aid. And I also like drinking Christmas.
How are you similar to Waverly in terms of your fashion and clothing/accessories? (@nedleysoffice)
Um…we both sometimes wear pants, shirts, and scarves. I wore a choker in my senior picture. Oh! And I also often have a pretty lady on my arm.
What would happen if you drank a Beaver Buzz? (@sheaven)
I assume this is not a euphemism and will answer as such. I usually don’t even drink more than one coffee a day, and energy drinks terrify me. So I imagine my heart would race and I would be nervous that I would die, and then I would take a nap after it wears off.
What’s your Peacemaker? That is, what is the thing that gives you purpose/power? (@mightbeangie)
Angie, you aren’t even caught up with Wynonna Earp, so I don’t think it’s fair that you’re asking this question, but okay.
I think the thing that gives me purpose and power is the support of my friends (most importantly my wife), and also people who read my writing. It’s silly and a bit embarrassing, but ever since I was a kid, I have thrived on praise. I am no different in adulthood. I love when I do/make/write something that my wife likes, and the positive responses I get from my blog motivate me to write more. I always think that most of my writing is barely a step above the trash heap, and positive feedback kind of quiets that voice in my head a bit.
Well, friends, thank you so much for reading. I appreciate it, and your comments on the Twitter always are a bright point to my day. Historically speaking, this is my least-favorite day of the entire year, as it’s the day my father passed away. 14 years ago, the man who used to tell his work friends that his kid was in show business died. Suddenly. Time makes it better, but it never goes away. So, selfishly, I scheduled this for today so I would have something to make me smile. So thank you for that.
See you next time, Earpers.