Sunday, April 29, 2007

Joe Blog's Interview #108 Legendary Mr Biffo

Name : Paul Rose AKA Mr Biffo (IMDB) (Wiki)
Age : 35
Location : London, UK
Vocation : Writer
Philosophy : Confused sort of liberal, lefty, hippy-drip stuff. But I'm not too sure about any of it.

Sum up what your blog is about.
What are blogs ever about? It's about me. Of late, it's about me plugging my new book.

Why are you doing your blog?
I started during a period when I was struggling to start work in the mornings. It was originally meant to be a warming-up exercise, but I got hooked. It gives me an opportunity to write without notes from script editors, or producers, or random passers-by. It's the only writing I get to do where I'm not answerable to anyone else, and where nobody is going to chip in with their own ideas. And that's liberating. And sexy.

What's the funniest entry on your site?
I'm sure everyone finds different bits funny. To be honest, though, I'm not necessarily trying to write funny as that takes effort, and my blog is a very first-draft-y stream-of-consiousness. I just write how I write. That said, there is an entry about the time I got accused of touching an Italian man's bottom in Tesco. I suppose that could be considered funny. Though at the time it was just plain harrowing.

What is your writing style?
I've no idea. What a strange question. That's like asking a tap whether its water tastes good.

What do people commonly say about your site?
They don't really. They just start asking me about things I'd forgotten blogging about. It can be a touch confusing. It's strange, but I feel very awkward and self-conscious when I meet people who've been reading my blog. It's like coming face to face with the man who has been taking photos of you in the shower, and it turns out he has posted copies of the photos to all your friends, family, and colleagues. And you've got a really small penis.

What would you be doing if you weren't doing your blog?
My proper job. Or filing some VAT receipts. Or entertaining my children. Something less self-serving anyway.

Why should someone visit your site?
Because they can learn where to buy Confessions of a Chatroom Freak, this years funniest book. Also, to make them feel good about themselves, and to make me feel really uncomfortable.

What did you learn from your first love?
That I like curvy brunettes. And that I make a much better husband than boyfriend.

Are there any blogs, you enjoy reading?
Yes, but I rarely have the time. Scaryduck is always well written, as is the intermittent blogging of Doctor Whose.

If you could invite anyone to a dinner party who would it be and why?
Living or dead? Living, I've got a soft spot for Stephen Fry, and Carrie Fisher. They seem like intelligent, friendly people with a bit of a story to tell. Possibly Julian Cope. Dead: Jesus. Oh wait he's not dead. Or is he? Actually, forget it. Jesus is just too damn confusing to invite.

Tell us about the idea behind your new book.
It's me pretending to be a young woman, going into Internet chat rooms, and waiting for dirty old men to start talking to me. And then once they've got good and hot, I send them my photo. The book contains the genuine transcripts of what occurred. I think and I hope its very funny. And a bit disturbing. I keep telling myself that its making an important point about online activities, but I'll let readers draw their own conclusions. The mask reveals the man and all that.

Tell us about the process you go through when you write.
The first few pages of anything I write are the most tortuous and re-written of the entire piece. I will spend days agonizing over the first few hundred words. After that I'm flying. And you can never predict when inspiration is going to strike. I have been known to write nothing all day, and then like a bolt out of the blue suddenly be writing like a demon from 10pm until 6am the following morning.

Tell us about a good deed you have done recently.
I helped a woman carry her pushchair up a flight of stairs. Also, I cured cancer.

Tell us a random funny story that comes to mind.
This isn't a particularly funny story, but for some reason this is the first thing that came into my head. At my school there was a boy called Michael Wilson, and for years I told him that there was a poo in a cage in my father's shed, and that I used to feed it toilet paper. You're glad you asked now, aren't you?

What advice would you have given yourself 5 years ago?
Keep going. But that was the advice I did give myself, so ya know. I'm not a great believer in hindsight. My life, 5 years ago, was a toilet. Regrets? I've got a few. But I wouldn't change a thing. I should be writing songs, really.

Any interesting travel stories?
I went to Chernobyl last year, which was about as interesting as you'd imagine. Kiev was the real surprise though; it's one of the finest cities I've ever been too. Also, I got winked at in an underpass by a woman who I don't believe was a prostitute. That kept me buoyed for weeks. I'm shortly hoping to go on an expedition to South American to search for giant anacondas and apemen, with the Centre for Fortean Zoology. That's not even a lie.

Do you have any strong opinions you would like to debate with me?
Not really. Nobody wins online debates.

Joe Blogs :
I thought your book was about online mass debate?

What's the most incredible thing that ever happened to you?
Just that I continue to make a living out of doing the thing I love doing most. And having a book published is proving to be pretty cool.

Now it's your turn! Ask me one question, anything you like.
Why haven't you bought my book yet?

Joe Blogs : I'll check it out, it looks like a good book. Thanks Mr Biffo, as a reader of the former Digitiser Magazine on Channel 4, it was a pleasure to interview you. Mr Biffo is also a BAFTA nominated screenwriter and has written for many shows including Eastenders and My Family to name but two. I lifted this from Wiki, made me chuckle : "He(Mr Biffo) once managed to provoke complaints over his episode of EastEnders where the character Dirty Den uttered the phrase "Big constables" in a way that implied profanity. (Interview in Retro Magazine)." That's legendary!

Your Site Address : Mr Biffo