Every Friday I interview a different person and share that interview with you. Perhaps they will be a fellow-author. Perhaps one of my neighbors. Maybe the bagger at the grocery store. A member of my family. A follower of this blog. Maybe it will be you! Hey, it could happen.
Today's guests are Marion Jensen and Matthew Buckley, who are, in fact, the same person. Marion writes under the pen name Matthew Buckley. Or Matthew parades about under the psuedonym Marion Jensen. It's all very, very confusing. It is also extremely entertaining, which is why I am particularly excited to have Marion AND Matthew joining me on INFF today.
Of course, you can check them out on the internet over at Chickens Don't Have Armpits [Matthew's blog, though Marion might lay claim to it as well] and a blog about Marion's latest project (which may or may not be run by Matthew).
Before the interview itself began Marion and I chatted about children and their uncanny ability to insult their parent's intelligence, the tendency of some people *ahem* to confuse various reality television programs and, everyone's favorite topic of conversation, Greenwich Mean Time. In other words, folks, you're in for a treat!
SME: Welcome to INFF!
Marion Jensen: Thank you, it's a pleasure to be here.
SME: I see that Marion has joined us. No Matthew today?
Matthew Buckley: I'm here as well. I just let Marion talk first. I always look a little better when I follow his act.
SME: Because you show him up? Or was that meant as a compliment.
Matthew Buckley: Marion eventually says something silly, and then I step in and look good. We kind of have an Abbot and Costello thing going on.
SME: Nice. I gotta get me an Abbot. Or a Costello. Not sure which is the "look good" one.
Marion Jensen: Depends on who you talk to.
SME: That can be said about so many things, when you think about it. Like "Which is the better breakfast meat: bacon or sausage?" "Depends on who you talk to."
Matthew Buckley: Unless you're talking to the pig.
SME: The pig would probably suggest you stick with eggs.
Marion Jensen: And the chicken would suggest grits.
I feel so nervous, like there are two thousand people out there watching us chat. The pressure!
SME: At least 2,000. This is a very popular segment, you realize.
Matthew Buckley: You know how to put your guests at ease.
SME: I try. Perhaps if I had a whole tag-team thing going on I could throw it over to my accomplice and she could say soothing things. *shrugs*
Marion Jensen: Alter egos can be handy at time. And other times they just get in the way.
SME: Who gets in the way of whom? (Or is this a difficult topic for you guys?)
Marion Jensen: The only time it gets tricky is at writers conferences. It becomes a little bit of Jeckyll/Hyde-ish. Most of the time we're pretty well balanced.
I also have a hard time cashing Matthew Buckley checks. I've lost about $80 that way.
One of these days that free-loader needs to get a checking account.
SME: For just a minute there I was tempted to seek out my own alter ego. Now, not feeling the love so much.
Marion Jensen: Yeah, it's all fun and games until the clerk at the bank gives you the stink-eye, and tells you that $40 check can't be cashed.
SME: And then you probably mutter "Matthew" under your breath and mumble a few choice words. So, Marion, Matthew... do either of you have any projects you're working on right now?
Marion Jensen: Yes. I've got a Middle Grade book I'm working on that is based on superheroes. It sounds a bit of a cliche, but I've gone to great lengths to keep the surprises coming.
I've even put together a little book trailer for it, because I'll use any excuse to put off writing.
SME: Hey. Me too. I even weeded my garden today instead of reworking a chapter. I'm feeling a deep kinship right now. *moment of silence*
Matthew Buckley: Yes, writing is like a vacation with kids. So fun to plan, but when you actually get in the van and close the door, you think, "what was I thinking?"
Does it count as tooting your own horn when your alter ego shares a link? [to the book trailer]
SME: That was very thoughtful of Matthew. Almost makes you feel bad about the "bounced check" comment, doesn't it Marion?
Marion Jensen: Almost. No, not really.
SME: Yeah. I didn't think so. Links can only go so far when we're talking cold, hard cash.
Marion Jensen: Aside from that project, I'm also working on a post-apocalyptic pioneer story, which is about 100 times cooler than it sounds.
Probably because it sounds really lame.
SME: "Lame" is just code word for "it's really cool once you know what I'm talking about." FYI
Marion Jensen: Well then, it's definitely lame.
SME: Another important question: What's your favorite continent? (And, yeah, that was for both of you)
Marion Jensen: Ha! You're trying to get me to make an incontinence joke, aren't you? My reputation precedes me. But I'll refrain.
I know it's not a continent, but I'd have to go with Madagasgar. It's surrounded by water, right? As any professional Risk player will tell you, "He who controls Madagascar, controls the world."
SME: Madagascar... I'll put that down as a vote for Africa.
Matthew Buckley: I'll go with Canada. Because they should be a continent. It's high time Canada got the respect they deserve.
SME: My Canadian readers have just given you a standing ovation, and I'm pretty sure I hear a rousing chorus of "O Canada!"
Marion Jensen: I'm a closet Red Green fan, and just discovered Corner Gas.
SME: Red Green: "I'm a man. But I can change. If I have to. I guess."
Marion Jensen: What about you, what is your favorite continent?
SME: North America. Because it is north, my favorite direction, and it is America, which is easy to spell.
Marion Jensen: Yes, much better than Yourup, or You'reup. Or whatever.
Aishu. Why does it have to be so hard?
SME: I know, right.
As is tradition over here at INFF, I have prepared a game!
Marion Jensen: Sweet.
I've brought my lucky dice and my tuque.
SME: This week's game is entitled "Who Is That Masked Man?" - a game about people whose identities they'd rather keep something of a mystery. I'm going to ask you three questions about criminals who went to great lengths to hide their identities. (See, the whole alter ego, secret identity theme continues... genius, eh?)
Marion Jensen: I tell you what, you don't need an alter ego, you've got everything covered on your own.
SME: Score! Answer the questions correctly and you will be crowned the INFF champ.
Marion Jensen: Sweet. I assume I can use Google?
Matthew Buckley: She won't be able to tell, you idiot, don't even ask her. Just use it.
SME: And, um, Google is sooo not allowed. *coughs out the word "cheater"*
Marion Jensen: Umm....we're ready.
SME: Unlike previous games, this one will not be multiple choice. You two discuss amongst yourself and give it a big ol' guess. PS I sometimes give hints. Sometimes. But not to CHEATERS.
Marion Jensen: Oh, we wouldn't cheat. In fact, my internet just went down, so I couldn't use Google even if I wanted.
Matthew Buckley: Yes, our power went out as well, so we can't even use the Encyclopedia Canadia.
SME: *looks at her interviewees with barely veiled suspicion*
Marion Jensen: *Puts on Japanese Manga doe eyes*
SME: Question number one... #1--Earlier this year two would-be-robbers made themselves a bit too easy to id after doing what to their faces to disguise their identities?
Marion Jensen: Wow, this so feels like Not My Job on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me...this is so cool.
Matthew Buckley: Shut up and answer the question.
SME: I will admit that Wait, Wait... did inspire this part of INFF.
Marion Jensen: I'm thinking it might have something to do with saran wrap or something? That isn't our final answer, we're just looking for positive body language from our host.
SME: *offers very negative body language*
Marion Jensen: I thought I remember hearing about this...but I'm drawing a blank.
SME: *taps her permanent black marker on the desk top. loudly*
Matthew Buckley: Did they color their faces with a marker?
SME: You are correct!! They drew masks on their faces in permanent marker. Made positively id'ing the suspects pretty darn easy.
Matthew Buckley: Yes! I don't want to hear another peep about those stupid checks, Marion.
Marion Jensen: Depends on the cash value of the INFF crown.
SME: #2--An Oklahoma woman took rather drastic steps to keep her face covered while robbing a local McDonald's. What article of clothing did she cover her face with?
Marion Jensen: Hmmmm, it has to be something embarrassing. I mean a shirt wouldn't be funny. A shoe wouldn't do the job. My initial though would be a brassiere.
SME: You are so very, very close.
Matthew Buckley: Underwear? Boxers? Sports bra? Chain mail?
SME: Wow. Matthew once again comes up with the correct answer. Impressive. The lady covered her face with underwear (but not boxers) held in place with paperclips.
Marion Jensen: Sweet. Just underwear would be embarrassing, but the paperclips give it a bit of class.
Matthew Buckley: A bit of bling, if you will.
SME: Definite bling. Final question...
Marion Jensen: I feel a total choke coming up.
SME: A Florida man attempted to rob a gas station while wearing what on his head to make himself unrecognizable?
Marion Jensen: Oh man, there are so many things that it could be.
Matthew Buckley: Does the fact that it's a Floridian give us some kind of clue?
SME: Let's just say he probably stole it from the janitorial closet. And, no. Florida isn't a clue.
Matthew Buckley: A bucket?
Marion Jensen: Not our final answer, unless it's right.
SME: Not the bucket so much as it's partner in "grime." Wow that was totally lame!!
Marion Jensen: Lame as in once you explain it to us it will be awesome!
SME: Precisely. Grime---Crime. Get it?
Marion Jensen: I'm suddenly wondering about mops.
SME: It was, in fact, a mop!!! With three correct answers out of 3, you are this week's INFF champion!!!
Marion Jensen: Yes! I don't have to share the crown, do I? Or maybe I get the crown, and Matthew can have the sash? You have a sash, I presume.
Matthew Buckley: I do prefer sashes.
SME: I'll look into getting a sash. In the meantime, you'll have to console yourself with a stroll through the portrait gallery and your first glimpse at the portrait I drew of you in honor of this special occasion!
Marion Jensen: I can't wait. Where exactly is the portrait gallery?
SME: That's just my fancy way of saying, "Hey. Look. I drew a portrait of you."
*hey. look. i drew a portrait of you*
Marion Jensen: BEST PORTRAIT EVER!
SME: I have thought about going into portrait-ing if the whole writing thing doesn't work out.
Marion Jensen: I think you have talent.
SME: *blushes* Well... *ahem*
I don't have a lot of experience drawing facial hair. You sort of ended up looking like a couple of frighteningly identical hobos.
Hobo: They don't look anything like me.
SME: It's time for the traditional final question of INFF: Top 5 reasons this is the best blog interview you've ever done. Ready. Go.
Marion Jensen: Number 5 - Use of the phrase "identical hobos.":
Number 4 - I can now put King of INFF on my resume.
Number 3 - Greenwich Mean Time - Always adds a touch of class. [please reference introductory paragraph]
Number 2 - Incontinence. *childish snicker*
Number 1 - I got screen time with THE Sarah M. Eden. Always a pleasure.
Matthew Buckley: Suck up.
SME: Sucking up is appreciated.
Thanks, both of you, for being this week's INFF guest!
Marion Jensen: It's been our pleasure.
SME: *cue exit music* Well, this has been "I Need Friends" Friday. Come back next week when I will make another friend!!
If you'd like to be interviewed for "I Need Friends" Friday, shoot me off an email: friends at sarahmeden dot com!
I am looking for anyone and everyone, whether or not you think you are interesting. You'll get a fantastic stick figure portrait of yourself, a little promotion (if you're looking for that sort of thing) and the opportunity to tell your friends and family that you've been interviewed by SME, er... by ME!
(ignore "Read More!")-->