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Twenty Question Interview with Evan Berke


Hello Readers,

I am super excited for this Twenty Question Interview with my friend, Evan Berke. I got to know Evan through working with him. Aside from being a talented comedian, Evan is also an engaging TV show personality currently featured on TMZ. Similar to my Author Interviews published here, these interviews started back in 2007 where I hosted famous and semi-famous creatives/comics to promote their work while having laughs in the process. Rob Delaney of the TV show Catastrophe and Paul Scheer of 30 Rock and Veep were some of my first ones published. Due to popular demand, these Q & A’s are back intermittently on here and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
 
1. Where are you from?
 
I was born and spent a majority of my life in Marietta, Georgia. It’s right between Atlanta and the country. I then went to college in Charleston, South Carolina before ending up in New York.
 
2. What is your occupation?
 
I am an Associate Field Producer at TMZ. You’ll also see me pop up on the show from time to time.

3. What effort in your profession are you most proud of?

I don’t know. I am a standup comedian and I have been doing it for 8 years. As a comedian, you have to adapt and find different ways to get your personality out there and different channels and audiences. Whether its hosting, producing, acting, ect. I’m most proud that I’ve always been able to find other mediums beside standup to be a comedian and entertain people.

4. If you could, what would you change about the city you live in?

Quality of life. I want a beach with palm trees and sunshine. I want getting around to not take two hours. I don’t want to have someone clip their toe nails next to me on the subway. Okay, now I’m ranting. Next question.

5. What was the strangest thing that happened to you while commuting or traveling?
 
I always find myself talking to strangers, so I will really need to think about this. I’d have to say there was one time I was on a flight for 4 hours and spoke to the woman next to me for literally the entire time. We had just met we just chatted it up. I’m sure the people around us were pissed.

6. Of all the famous people you’ve met, who’s your most treasured?
 
When I was walking through Beverly Hills in LA, I got the chance to shake Mel Brooks’ hand and thank him for being the great legend that he is. That was such a great moment for me, and hopefully for him too.

7. If you could commit a crime and not get caught, what would it be?
 
I would steal a bunch of money. But from a bank, because it is insured and really all they need to do is print more of that green paper stuff we give value. No one gets hurt and I walk away rich.
 
8. Do you cook? If so, are you ‘Chopped’ worthy or ‘Worst Cooks’ material?
 
I don’t cook often, but I wouldn’t call myself a bad cook. My girlfriend does most of the cooking, but I do make for one hell of a sous-chef.
 
9. What quote do you live by?

“It’s not about how hard you can hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” — Rocky Balboa

10. What do you most admire about your creative process?
 
The part no one sees. So much goes into a finished product and the debuts and premieres. But I love those moments when everyone is worn out and tired and just wants it to be over with already. When you are pushed to your limits and you are forced to let go the idea that something needs to be perfect, but that it just needs to be unique.

11. Black, brown, red or blonde haired hottie?
 
Blonde, of course!

12. What award would you love to win?
 
People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive (LOL)

13. Favorite dessert?
 
My stepmom Shelly’s Coconut Creme Pie. So good!
 
14. What do you dislike about your profession?
 
The thing I dislike is the thing that keeps me coming back — the grind. I love it and I hate it. I’m addicted to it.

15. Do you play a music instrument or would like to learn to play?
 
I don’t play an instrument, but I would love to learn to play either the drums or piano. They are the ones usually keeping time and rhythm and I like that.

16. Favorite concert to date?
 
Phish at Madison Square Garden. I’m not even a Phish fan, but holy shit, that concert was something else.

17. If you could have a dinner date with anyone dead or alive who
would it be?

Stephen Colbert. That guy is the best.

18. Biggest pet peeve?
 
Tardiness. I’m always early and I can’t stand it when other people are late.

19. What’s your latest plug / project / promotion?
 
Well, currently I work for TMZ and I am constantly producing content and interviews. You can check it out at www.evanberke.com/tmz! A bunch of my standup comedy is there too so check it out!

20. What is the last question you would like me to ask you? Or want to ask me one?
I want to ask you one! How many interviews have you done and who would your dream interview be with?

You’re no. 87! Wow… on my blog and other publications. As for dream interview… sadly he has passed, David Bowie. For now there are many but one? Michelle Pfeiffer. I had the fortune of meeting her and would like to continue the conversation we were having… this time without a drooling boyfriend next to me (haha).

Special thanks again to Evan for taking part of my fun questionnaire! Watch him on TMZ and click here to learn more about Evan: www.evanberke.com/tmz
Twitter – @evanberke

P.s. Amazon gift card giveaway for my book reviews by September 18th. If you haven’t reviewed this book yet, Please do so now! Paperbacks are on sale for $12.99 / kindle $4.99 https://www.amazon.com/Feedback-Lisa-Montanino/dp/0615972500/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1501512828&sr=8-1&keywords=lisa+montanino

Till next time, peace out!
Lisa

 
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Posted by on August 1, 2017 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Women’s History Month

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Posted by on March 1, 2017 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Thursday’s Poem and Tunes…

The Paradoxical Commandments by By Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

Currently playing on Little Mountain FM

“Beauty of Grey” & “Mirror Song” ❤ wrenching double-play by Live (Unplugged versions)
“Getchoo” – Weezer
“One Dance” – Drake
“Dear God”- XTC
“Infatuation” – Rod Stewart
“Tired of Being Sorry” – Ringside
“Remedy” – Seether
“Fall to Pieces” – Velvet Revolver
“Fight Song” – Rachel Platten
“Personal Jesus” – Depeche Mode
“Don’t Stop” – Fleetwood Mac
“It’s a Mistake” – Men at Work
“Teenage dream” – Katy Perry
“Yes” – Coldplay
“Fear of a Black Planet” – Public Enemy
“Life on Mars” – David Bowie (VH1 storytellers version)

 

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Wednesday’s Quotes & Tunes…

“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
Lao Tzu

“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”
Albert Camus

“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.”
Maya Angelou

Currently playing on Little Mountain FM

BBoys In The Cut – Beastie Boys
Cult Of Personality – Living Colour
Sound & Color – Alabama Shake
Give Up The Goods (Just Step) – Mobb Deep
Do I wanna know? – Arctic monkeys
On a Plain – Nirvana
Dreams – Beck
Steam – Peter Gabriel
Bells – Allison
Feel So Good – Mase
Maps – Maroon 5
I’m Not Over – Carolina Liar
Cake By The Ocean – DNCE
Just Breathe – Pearl Jam
You Got Lucky – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
She’s Always a Women – Billy Joel
It’s a Mistake – Men At Work
Politics of Dancing – Re-Flex

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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World Health Day

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Celebrate World Health Day by practicing good health and encouraging those with health conditions to be active and defy the odds.

 

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview With Alexander Marmer

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  1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

The summer of 2007. I was in the Army hospital in San Antonio, Texas and happened to find a book in the local library that pretty much changed my life since that point forward. Of course I’m talking about Dan Brown and his famous “The Da Vinci Code.”

  1. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?

Mystery, detective, thriller and action/adventure

  1. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

Sherlock Holmes! No doubt. I first read the stories of Sherlock Holmes’ adventures when I was about 7-8 years old and I was hooked on them! I read, re-read and still re-reading them pretty much every chance I get.

  1. Which famous writer can you most identify with?

Dan Brown and his eminent “The Da Vinci Code” inspired me to write my own novel. Dan Brown’s widespread use of trivia facts throughout the entire novel made his book for me the most enjoyable piece of reading material I’ve ever read.

  1. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)

I published my first book, “Four Ways to Pharaoh Khufu” in December of 2015. It’s a mystery detective novel about the Great Pyramid in Egypt. During the last three years serving in the US Army, I was a freelance writer for the US Army Fort Drum newspaper, The Mountaineer and published a number of articles about the Army life activities.

  1. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece?

No, I wouldn’t change a word! It took me a long 7 years to write my first novel, so every word in the book was chosen carefully and with the special intent. In addition, the manuscript being edited at least 30 times by me and then at least 5-10 times by a few editors.

  1. Do you have any advice for other writers?

Keep on writing – don’t give up! I know a bunch of unrealized and unpublished authors because they could never finish their manuscripts. I know that by publishing my book I already inspired at least three “hung up” authors who “resurrected” their unfinished manuscripts and got back in the writing chair.

  1. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful)

English is my second language, but I can proudly say that when I moved to the United States, my grades in English composition classes were at least B and sometime even A-.

  1. How much research do you do for your writing?

I’ve always been fascinating by Egypt. Egypt and the pyramids always mesmerized me: The Great Pyramid in particular, always fascinated me. I always knew there were more mysteries to the Great Pyramid than what we learned about it in school and numerous books about Egypt. The meeting of Anatoly Vasiliev, who devoted more than 40 years of his life studying and analyzing the Great Pyramid, back in 1996 in Moscow, cardinally changed my perspective about the Great Pyramid constructive methods and made me to write this book.

  1. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I always write on the laptop first. Then after I finished writing 5 through 10 pages, I would print them out and read the text I wrote on the physical pages with the pen/pencil in my hand and as I read along I would make some corrections/changes/substitutions along the way. When I finally satisfied myself with what I see, I would go back to the laptop and start implementing all the corrections I made from the physical papers to the computer screen in MS Word.

  1. What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Don’t give up! Persevere! Beauty is in the simplicity!

  1. What book do you think everyone should read?

The Count of Monte Cristo” by Alexandre Dumas. It’s a classical revenge story that never gets too old.

  1. Two-part question: Do you play a musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?

When I was about 8-10 year old, I played dombra, a pear-shaped long necked lute of the Kazakh people of Central Asia. Right now I wouldn’t mind to learn to play a guitar.

  1. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?

I tried a traditional way of book publishing and submitted the book proposal to a lot of literary agents and some book publishing companies. My book at the time was about 165,000 words long and I got whole bunch of responses from the literary agents that since I was unknown and unpublished author, my manuscript was way too big for this particular book genre. I shrunk it to about 105,000 words and still was getting a feedback it was too big. I decided not to cut anything else in the book and turned to self-publishing. I found a company in Singapore, Partridge Publishing, and I had a very smooth publishing experience with Partridge. Everything was explained to me at the beginning and the whole publishing process went smoothly without any major road blocks.

  1. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?

I’ve always been fascinating by Egypt. Egypt and the pyramids always mesmerized me. So, since I’ve spent so much time on research and writing about the Great Pyramid, I would love to change places with the Pharaoh Khufu! Not just for a week, but for life! Maybe I’m Pharaoh Khufu’s reincarnation? Who knows?

  1. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

Well, for me it’s quite an opposite. I already had two professions before I tried myself as an author. I am an officer for the NYPD and a former Sergeant in the US Army National Guard. I was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2006 and Operation Enduring Freedom in 2012.

  1. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

I definitely like Bill Murray, but Chevy Chase is my favorite actor! Loved him especially in the “Vacation” movies! As for the second part of the question – honestly had no idea who Michael Palin was. So, I had to Google him and even though I’ve seen him in some movies, but I definitely like the performance and the fun of John Cleese.

  1. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)

I got a very good review from Kirkus Reviews and a 5-star review from the Readers’ Favorites!

  1. What quote do you live by?

Prepare for the worst and hope for the best!

  1. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)

Definitely Pulitzer Prize would be the major accomplishment! In addition to that to be on the New York Times bestselling list and become a bestselling author! Hopefully one day the movie would be made based on my book!

  1. Would you like to ask me a question?

What would be the best way to find a literary agent that would be interested in one’s book?
Great question I wish I knew a concise answer to. My best suggestion is to attend writer conferences to pitch your work.

Special thanks to Alexander for sharing his thoughts with us. Enjoy reading this talented author!

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Motivational Quotes for the Work Week…

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https://www.themuse.com/advice/45-inspirational-quotes-that-will-get-you-through-the-work-week

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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