This Month A Motley Vision, the first (and still the best!) Mormon arts and culture blog, turns ten years old. To commemorate the occasion, I sent AMV founder William Morris a few questions about the the blog and how it has evolved over the last decade.
Here are his answers:
Scott Hales: Take us back ten years. How did A Motley Vision get its start? What motivated you to create the blog?
William Morris: In early 2004 I found out about Times & Seasons from Clark Goble, who I knew from our mutual participation in the Association for Mormon Letters email list. I quickly became a frequent commenter on T&S. It’s funny — I had known about blogs for years because I work in higher ed PR, but it had never occurred to me to look to blogs to discuss Mormonism, especially since I was most interested in Mormon art, and that need was filled by the AML-list.
Later that spring, the the technology behind the AML-list melted down. Apparently, that got sorted out within a couple of weeks, but I never got the news. So I continued to comment on T&S and the other Mormon blogs that were popping up and before long had decided that the bloggernacle needed a Mormon culture blog. I re-found the AML-list before AMV launched, but the limitations of that technology and format were much more clear to me now that I had experienced the bloggernacle so I went ahead with my plans for AMV.
My motivations were twofold: a) I had things I wanted to say and b) I wanted there to be a place in the bloggernacle specifically dedicated to Mormon literature and art.
SH: AMV is a group blog, but it is also your brainchild. How have your interests, personality, and values shaped the voice of the blog?
WM: I think it’s that simple: AMV represents the nexus of my interests, personality and values. It represents the conversation I want to have. And as I recruited co-bloggers, I reached out to the voices that engaged with and seemed to want to talk to me. But I suppose at the center has always been my conviction that culture is important to Mormonism in the 21st century; that Mormon culture needs a radical middle; and that AMV should be a voice for the radical middle. And, of course, that humor should be deployed whenever possible.
Continue reading A Motley Vision Turns Ten: A Q&A with William Morris