Thursday, August 22, 2013

Interview Sessions: Volume 3.2

MK Morris: You'll Laugh, But You'll Feel Immediately Guilty About It.

She's a writer. She's a filmmaker. She is a self-described "burrito enthusiast." (We have the same qualification on our resumes!) She is MK Morris. 

It was her keen comedian's sense for punchlines that first grabbed us (we can't wait to hear her piece live), but her art goes so much deeper than snappy zingers. With humour that is a little tongue-in-cheek, and a critical eye for the world around us, MK's work will make you think (just as soon as you've finished laughing). 

As you may be able to gather from her list of credentials, MK is a busy woman. The short story she submitted to us, "Steven Myerschmidt Bites the Big One," is now (perhaps unsurprisingly, all things considered) being toured around the film festival circuit, and we can only imagine how fantastically MK's sharp writing style has translated to the screen. She also maintains a Twitter presence under the handle @mk_morris, a youtube channel under the less-obvious handle NotTallAtAll, and has a demo reel up on Vimeo (just in case you're interested in bringing her on board to your own film projects).

How will she find time to read for us on Sunday? Well, we're expecting her to be reading from a director's chair as she squints into a camera lens, stopping repeatedly to yell things like "Cut!," "Rolling!," and "I'll be in my trailer!" ....which, on its own, would be worth seeing. 

We may not have an on-set catering service available this Sunday at The Only Cafe, but we do have an excellent selection of beer, coffee, tea, and literature - and if you're hungry for a little somethin' somethin' now, MK answered a few questions for us about herself and her work, that you can read below.

Right out of the box, tell us: how would you describe your writing to someone who hasn't ever read it before? (For bonus points: if it came with a safety warning, what would that warning be?)

Generally my works tend towards a comedy where people die – but it’s funny, I swear.

Warning: you’ll laugh but feel immediately guilty about it.

Can you remember the first time a writer's work really reached out and grabbed you? If so, who were they, and what about their writing caught your attention?

Joss Whedon is probably someone who first sparked my interest in writing. I usually write for film, prose is actually something I find very difficult. Something about Joss Whedon’s distinctive style, playing with genre, and subverting audience expectation really spoke to the type of writing I wanted to do. (However I managed to interpret this in my 10-year old’s mind though). Novel-wise, I’d definitely have to say Terry Pratchett. I actually recently found a “novel” that I wrote when I was about 12 (it was about 30 pages long), that was so clearly influenced by Terry Pratchett – it was absolutely riddled with footnotes and “clever” phrases.

In your own work, are there any themes, images, or characters (etc.) that you find yourself drawn to, intentionally or otherwise? What are they? Why do you think they resonate with you?
Schmucks. Unfortunate average people. I love superhero movies, but I think that super things happening to incredibly average people is kind of more interesting.

If there's one thing that you'd like people to feel, or to take away from your writing, what is it?
Enjoyment. Hopefully. Maybe?

Just for fun, give me a pairing: one of your favourite works/authors and one of your favourite beverages (alcoholic or not). Why do they go together? How do they complement one another?
American Gods by Neil Gaiman and a whisky sour. Drink whilst reading and you’ll look super classy.

Any chance you'll give us a little hint at what you'll be reading on the 25th?

A comedy in which someone dies. I’m sorry, I’m terribly predictable.

Last question: give us a short (less than 75 words) third-person bio blurb about yourself which covers any awards/distinctions you're proud of and what you're tackling right now.

MK Morris is a Toronto-based writer, creative producer, filmmaker, and burrito enthusiast. The short film based on her short story Steven Myerschmidt Bites the Big One is making the festival circuit, to (hopefully) many accolades. She is currently working on getting her TV show, Mama’s Green Tea, picked up, which won first place at Raindance’s Live!Ammunition! Pitch competition, with her writing partner Kaleigh Sutton.

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