@raybeere if you really want to create a large project like a Writer's Workshop you might want to check out programming tools that make it easy to use 3rd party components. Writing just a plain text editor is very involved. But if you start with an open source editor component you may find you just need to add the tweaks you want.
I've messed around with a lot of different interpreters and compilers. One that has served me well for general purpose GUI type programming on Windows is Delphi 5 Professional. For making Windows Shell extensions, like if you right click on something in Explorer and launch it from that menu, those type of programs, it's tough to beat Visual C++ 6. For small utilities on Windows AutoIt3 and AutoHotKey are good.
The natural language feel of Pascal is a good point. If you read books on algorithms it seems like the ones with examples in Pascal are easiest to grasp.
If you look around you can find free basic, assembler, pascal and scripting languages for Windows. For maximum portability and getting close to the metal it's hard to beat the old standard C. But I think it's best to grasp programming conceptually first. That's why I think it wiser to start with something like Pascal rather than something like Perl.
Once you mess around with a few programming languages you see they are all either interpreters or compilers under the covers and do similar things. Object Oriented and other abstractions have power but I think it's a good idea to do at least one language that's close to the machine. The code actually has to run on something and you won't appreciate the limitations if everything is a virtual machine. I started with GWBasic with the line numbers and the whole bit. But it was easy to learn. After that it was Turbo Pascal, assember and C.
You may want to check out the library for "Algorithms" by Robert Sedgewick. I'd recommend the one with Pascal implementations.
Also "Algorithms + Data Structures = Programs" by Niklaus Wirth
who invented Pascal. It was written before Object Oriented Programming, but back then the rage was "Structured Programming" which is like the precursor to OOP. Still a very valuable book.
I didn't take Computer Science classes so I used the "Spider Web" approach. If I read an article that was very good and the author mentioned a programming text, I'd check it out. That's how I heard of authors that are standard in computer science classes like Knuth and Sedgewick.
Follow what you enjoy. I never used Perl or Smalltalk much because the syntax put me off, but I'm glad I read books about them and messed around with them a little because it increased my understanding of programming languages that I like to use.