When I was at BlizzCon last year, I talked with a number of people from Blizzard's HR department. We talked briefly about the application process, and it was suggested that if I ever apply for a job there, I should include, along with my resumé, an inspiration list. They want to know who or what inspires you to be a better artist -- a very fair question.
I thought about it, and it didn't take long to come up with an answer. When it comes to my writing, few people inspire me quite like Norm MacDonald.
I first became acquainted with Norm back in the mid-1990s during his stint on Saturday Night Live. He was the go-to news guy, holding the anchor chair of Weekend Update. He's done stand-up. He performed (as 1996 Republican presidential candidate Bob Dole) at the White House Correspondents' Dinner in front of President Clinton. And now, he's got a new show on Comedy Central called Sports Show with Norm MacDonald.
We're a lot alike, Norm and I. We're both unafraid to be inappropriate. We're both willing to take chances. Neither of us are meant for mass audiences. If I ever got a sitcom on ABC, it'd fare about as well as Norm's did, which is not very well at all. I'd probably even hire Laurie Metcalf too; I like her.
Norm puts on a good dumb guy front, but he's almost always the smartest man in the room. Take his appearance on Who Wants to be a Millionaire back in 2000. In one of the most entertaining segments that show had ever, he wins a heck of a lot of money for charity and lampoons the game's format all in one fell swoop. (His run towards a million starts in the clip above; if you're interested, the phenomenal conclusion is available after the fold.)
I figured the topic of inspiration was interesting enough that, in addition to the traditional WRUP question, asked my fellow WoW Insider writers the question: "Who -- or what -- inspires you?"
Filed under: WoW Insider Business