Wednesday, October 6, 2010


1. When you write, do you need music/noise or do things need to be as quiet as possible?

I thrive in very noisy environments. When I was a young Dad, writing at home, I never had the heart to shut my door to my two sons so they always came in, asked me questions, sat on my lap, got down, fought, sang, yelled, made me read them “Goodnight Moon”, strummed my guitar, etc. So, since then I’ve been immune to interruption. My current home office is a loft above the living room so I can hear everything that’s going on down there and I like that just fine. I very often put on music that matches the mood of a scene or sequence and there are certain sequences I can’t write until I have suitable music playing to lead me along.

2. Your favorite place on Earth?

Geographically, bobbing in a kayak amongst the Gulf Islands off Vancouver Island. Kinetically, riding my motorcycle on Nacimiento-Ferguson Road over the Coastal Range in Central California. Familially, the head of the kitchen table in the Cabin up the Canyon By the Sea Under the Killer Ivy. Emotionally, anywhere my wife is EXCEPTING craft stores or plant nurseries. Those places make me suicidal.

3. What do you consider your first big break in ‘the biz?’

There are so many little steps and big breaks in becoming a professional writer. First was being forced to take typing lessons during detention in Grade 9. My first American big break was being hired by Rob Thomas to work on his ABC series “Cupid” in 1998. Everything after that has been a break.

4. What’s so awesome about Top Gear? (I hear you’re a big fan)

I could become REALLY boring on the subject of Top Gear. But, in a nutshell, the show manages to take a narrow, parochial subject — automobiles — and create a hilariously funny, witty, exciting television show built around three distinct personalities and fantastic production. I love Top Gear. I love it.

5. Your favorite song to sing when doing Karaoke?

I have never done Karaoke. I do really enjoy hearing drunk people try to do “I Will Survive” because each verse tends to get higher and higher until the singer is screeching and looking panic stricken like they are in a runaway hot air balloon heading for the stratosphere with no way out.

6. Was there a movie/TV/book or something that inspired you to be a writer? If so, what was it?

I think I first considered how great it would be to become a writer when, as a kid, I read the Horatio Hornblower series. I wanted to write television when I saw the mini-series “Lonesome Dove”.

7. What’s the oldest saved program to watch on your DVR/Tivo?

OK, true confession, it’s Mad Men. It’s like homework to me. I find it just a teensy bit dull. And now, my career is over. OVER.

8. You can have any film or TV star to guest on Bones. Who would it be and why do you ‘heart’ them?

Not counting my friends who are actors? Yes, let’s do it that way: Bill Nighy because he is so eminently watchable. The screen positively thrums and giggles when Nighy is on it. He’d make me appear to be a very good writer, which is my favourite quality in an actor.

9. ”If I wasn’t a writer, I’d be a…..what?

Realistically, an English Professor or, impossible dream, a CBC Radio Host with my own show or, dreaming here, a luthier.

10. You’re stranded on a desert island with your family but you can choose 3 items to have with you. What would those three items be?

OK, this is tough because you said with my family, not with Shakira or Marianne Faithfull (circa 1968…) so … The Library of Congress, The Louvre, and Madison Square Garden. It’s your problem how to get them there.


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