Transcript: Imprint season 14 episode 4 | Oct 16, 2002

Tina Srebotnjak stands in a studio with pieces of art in red and orange hanging in the background.

She’s in her late thirties, with short chestnut hair and bangs. She’s wearing a brown blazer.


Tina says HELLO, I'M
TINA SREBOTNJAK.
WELCOME TO IMPRINT, THE TV SHOW
FOR PASSIONATE READERS.
TONIGHT -

Nino's in his thirties, clean-shaven with short brown hair.

He says I'VE WRITTEN A
NOVEL ABOUT JESUS.
WELL CLEARLY THAT GOES BACK TO
THOSE STORIES IN MY GRADE 1
READER ABOUT THIS GREAT HERO
FIGURE WHO I HAD AS A CHILD.

Tina continues WHY WRITER
NINO RICCI DECIDED HE HAD TO
TAKE ON THE GREATEST STORY EVER
TOLD.
HOW ANDREW
PYPER GOT READY TO LAUNCH HIS
LATEST BOOK.
DID HE HAVE ANY JITTERS?

Andrew's in his thirties, clean-shaven with short black hair.

He says I COULDN'T TELL
THEM TO STOP THE PRESSES NOW IF
I WANTED TO.
SO NOW THE TERROR STARTS, I
THINK.

Tina continues AND BEST
SELLING AUTHOR ANN-MARIE
MacDONALD DESCRIBES THE AGONY OF
THE WRITING PROCESS.

Ann Marie's in her thirties with short black hair.

She says I SIT
THERE, LIKE A CHILD PLACED ON
THE POTTY.
IF YOU SIT THERE LONG ENOUGH,
SOMETHING WILL HAPPEN.

Theme music plays as the opening sequence rolls.

Fast clips show books and maps in hues of orange and red.


In the studio, Tina says YOU THINK
IT'S OVER WHEN THE INK IS DRY ON
THE PAGE?
WELL THINK AGAIN.
IMPRINT FOLLOWED WRITER ANDREW
PYPER AS HE TOOK HIS LATEST WORK
FROM MANUSCRIPT TO PUBLISHED
WORK.

The books appear briefly.

She continues YOU MAY REMEMBER ANDREW FROM HIS
FIRST NOVEL, THE 1999 BEST
SELLER, "LOST GIRLS."
HIS LATEST, "THE TRADE MISSION,"
IS ABOUT 2 DOT-COM MILLIONAIRES
ON A LIFE AND DEATH TREK THROUGH
THE AMAZON.
EXPECTATIONS WERE HIGH FOR THIS
NOVEL, SO WHEN THE LAUNCH DATE
FINALLY ARRIVED, ANDREW PYPER
WAS READY TO ENJOY THE MOMENT.

A clip plays.
A blackboard by the street reads "Tonight at the Paddock. Andrew Pyper's latest gets launched!"
Inside a bar, people drink beer and eat food.

Inside the bar, a woman in her fifties speaks. A caption reads "Anne Epidermic. Andrew's agent.

She says I WAS VERY
PROUD OF ANDREW WHEN HE
PUBLISHED "LOST GIRLS," WHICH
WAS A GROUND BREAKING NOVEL FOR
CANADA, I BELIEVE, AND NOW HE'S
COME UP WITH "THE TRADE
MISSION," WHICH SIMPLY CONFIRMS
HOW ORIGINAL AND TALENTED HE IS.

Andrew's schedule book appears on screen with the date January 22 circled and a hand-written note that says "Finish book!"

The clip ends.

Andrew sits in his living room. A caption reads "Andrew Pyper. The Trade Mission."

He says I THINK WHEN
YOU SET OUT TO WRITE A FIRST
NOVEL, YOU'RE SETTING OUT TO
SOMETHING THAT THERE IS NO
GUIDEBOOK FOR.
WHEREAS, WITH A SECOND NOVEL, I
THINK IT'S KIND OF A SHIFT
TOWARD A PROFESSIONALIZATION OF
THE PROCESS.
NOT TO SAY THAT IT'S MORE ABOUT
THE PUBLISHING BUSINESS, BUT
RATHER, YOU FEEL LIKE IT'S A
JOB.
YOU KNOW, OKAY, BACK TO WORK.
I THINK THE ATTENTION THAT "LOST
GIRLS" RECEIVED, IF ANYTHING
MAKES PUBLISHING OR WRITING A
SECOND NOVEL EASIER.

An article appears on screen with the title "Man of Mystery." Andrew smiles at the camera.

He continues WHAT IT GIVES YOU ARE
ADVANTAGES.
PEOPLE WILL REVIEW THIS SECOND
NOVEL, WHEREAS IF THE FIRST
NOVEL DROPPED LIKE A STONE, IT
MAY NOT.
THIS IS THE FUN PART NOW IN MANY
RESPECTS, BECAUSE THE NOVEL IS--
IN MY CASE, THE NOVEL IS DONE,
IT'S BEING COPY EDITED, IT'S
GOING TO COME OUT IN THE FALL,
SO THERE'S NOTHING BUT
EXCITEMENT NOW.
THERE'S NOTHING BUT LOOKING
FORWARD TO HANDLING IT, TO
SEEING WHAT THE COVER LOOKS
LIKE, UM...
THIS IS THE GRAVY TIME.

Andrew's schedule book appears with the date March 18 circled and a hand-written note that reads "talk to Iris about book cover."

Andrew and Iris sit at a desk and look at some books. Iris is in her thirties with black hair to her shoulders and bangs.

She says SO ANDREW, THE
COVER FOR "THE TRADE MISSION,"
WE HAVE SOME MOCK UPS HERE, AND
I THOUGHT MAYBE WE COULD LOOK AT
SOME OF THE OTHER COVERS THAT
HAVE BEEN PRODUCED AROUND THE
WORLD FOR "LOST GIRLS," AND TRY
TO DECIDE WHETHER THE COVER WE
HAVE HERE ACCOMPLISHES WHAT WE
THINK WE ACCOMPLISHED WITH "LOST
GIRLS."

A caption reads "Iris Tupholme. Andrew's editor."

She says ONE OF THE
INDICATORS THAT I HAVE, FOR THE
SUCCESS OF "THE TRADE MISSION"
IS THAT IN HOUSE THERE HAS BEEN
AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF SUPPORT
FOR THE BOOK ALREADY.
I'VE HAD MORE PEOPLE ASK FOR THE
MANUSCRIPT, THAN I NORMALLY DO.
I'VE HAD PEOPLE FROM ALL PARTS
OF THE COMPANY ASK FOR A COPY OF
THE DRAFT OF THE MANUSCRIPT AND
THEY'VE COME IN AND TOLD ME HOW
MUCH THEY LOVED IT.
SO I THINK THAT THESE ARE PEOPLE
WHO ARE REAL READERS, WHO DON'T
HAVE ANYTHING PARTICULARLY TO DO
WITH THE PUBLICATION, AND
THEY'RE VERY EXCITED ABOUT IT.

Andrew points to his book "The Trade Mission." The cover features a tall white tower.

He says I LIKE--
I LIKE IT.
I MEAN, I THINK THE NAME COULD
BE A BIT BIGGER, BUT...
I'M JOKING.

Iris says YOU THINK IT
COULD BE A BIT BIGGER.

Andrew says YEAH.

Iris says WELL WE'LL SEE
WHAT WE CAN DO.

Andrew says DO YOU HAVE
ANYTHING IN A BILLBOARD.

Iris says YEAH.

In his living room, Andrew says SINCE JANUARY,
I FINISHED THE BOOK.
THE BOOK WAS FINISHED IN
JANUARY, IN THE SENSE THAT THERE
WAS A BEGINNING, MIDDLE AND END,
AND I THOUGHT IT WAS FINISHED.
BUT THEN THERE'S VARIOUS EXTRA
LAYERS OF EDITING AND COPY
EDITING THAT YOU HAVE TO DO.
NOW IT'S FINISHED.

Andrew looks at Iris and says I SHOWED THIS
TO MY MUM, AND SHE THOUGHT--

Iris says WELL YOUR
MOTHER WOULD KNOW.

Andrew says SHE KNOWS
EVERYTHING.

Iris says YES.

Andrew says AND SHE THOUGHT
THIS MIGHT BE A WATERFALL.
IS THAT JUST BECAUSE SHE HAS
BIFOCALS, OR DO YOU THINK IT
COULD BE A WATERFALL?

Iris says I DO NOT
ACTUALLY RECALL A WATERFALL
PLAYING A MAJOR ROLL IN THIS
NOVEL.

Andrew says IT'S NOT IN THE
NOVEL, I JUST--

Iris says SO IT'S NOT A
LITERAL INTERPRETATION.
WELL I DIDN'T THINK IT WAS A
WATERFALL...

In his living room, Andrew says I'M GOING TO
RESEARCH THE NEXT BOOK
HOPEFULLY, OR DO SOME OF THE
RESEARCH FOR THE NEXT BOOK OVER
THE COURSE OF THE SUMMER.
THEN WHEN THE BOOK COMES OUT IN
BRITAIN AND HERE IN THE FALL,
I'LL PROBABLY HAVE TO DO STUFF,
LIKE THIS KIND OF STUFF,
STANDING IN FRONT OF CAMERAS
TRYING TO ANSWER QUESTION STUFF.
AND THAT, I GUESS WILL TAKE UP
THE BETTER PART OF THE FALL.

Andrew's schedule planner appears with the date June 22 circled and a hand-written note that reads "Book expo."

Now Andrew stands behind and reads from his notes.

He says THIS IS MY
NOTEBOOK, AND EVERYTHING GOES IN
HERE, I MEAN EVERYTHING.
AND NOW I CAN'T FIND IT.
BOOK EXPO TALK, HERE WE ARE.

He flips some pages and says
UH, GREET THE BOOK EXPO PEOPLE
AND THANK THEM.
HELLO, THANK YOU.

In his living room, Andrew says TODAY IS BOOK
EXPO, SO THIS IS THE BIG BOOK
SELLERS CONVENTION, NATIONAL
BOOK SELLERS CONVENTION, AND AT
LUNCH, MYSELF AND ANN-MARIE
MacDONALD TALKED ABOUT YOU KNOW,
THE WRITING PROCESS, AS WELL AS
BOOKS WE WERE WORKING ON, TO AN
AUDIENCE OF BOOK SELLERS.
AND THEY ARE THE PEOPLE OF
COURSE, THAT SELL THE BOOKS, AND
THEY ARE EXTREMELY IMPORTANT AND
THEIR RECOMMENDATION TO
CUSTOMERS MEANS WAY MORE THAN A
FULL PAGE AD IN THE NEWSPAPER.
THEY'RE THE PEOPLE THAT
REPRESENT YOU TO REAL READERS.

At the podium, he says MY STORY OPENS IN BRAZIL AT A
TRADE MISSION, KIND OF A TRADE
CONFERENCE, KIND OF LIKE THIS.
SO I SPENT 5 WEEKS IN THE
BRAZILIAN RAIN FOREST ON MY OWN,
WHICH IS SORT OF WHERE THESE
EVENTS TAKE PLACE, FAR UP THE
RIO NEGRO, WHICH WAS
FASCINATING.
BUT I'M NOT AN OUTDOORS PERSON
BY ANY STRETCH, I MEAN, I FIND
THE SUBWAY IN WINTER IN TORONTO
OVERHEATED.
[ laughing ]
AND IT WAS HOTTER IN BRAZIL.
YOU KNOW, I SOMETIMES TREAT MY
JACK RUSSEL TERRIER TO A WALK IN
HIGH PARK, BECAUSE THERE ARE
ACTUAL TREES THERE, UNLIKE THE
PARK I USUALLY TAKE HIM TO.
AND THAT, FOR ME, IS A LITTLE
WILD.
I SORT OF HEAR THINGS.
[ laughing ]

In his living room, Andrew says I LIKED THE
FIRST PART OF THIS PERIOD OF
HAVING FINISHED A BOOK BUT IT
NOT BEING OUT YET, BECAUSE THERE
WAS JUST SO MUCH RELIEF AT
HAVING FINISHED IT.
NOW THE INITIAL KIND OF--
YOU KNOW, I'VE CAUGHT MY WIND
NOW.
AND NOW THE IMMINENT PUBLICATION
OF THE BOOK IS AN UNAVOIDABLE
FACT.
I COULDN'T TELL THEM TO STOP THE
PRESSES NOW IF I WANTED TO.
SO NOW THE TERROR STARTS, I
THINK.
THE REAL WORRYING STARTS.

Andrews schedule planner appears with the date September 4 circled and a hand-written note that reads "Book launch."

At a party, people talk and drink.

Andrew says THIS IS THE
LAUNCH PARTY FOR "THE TRADE
MISSION."
THE BOOK IS BEING PUBLISHED
TODAY, AND IT'S IN BOOKSTORES
NOW.
SO THERE'S DEFINITELY NO GOING
BACK NOW.
UH, AND I SHOULD MENTION, AS
WELL THAT THIS IS WHEN THE
DRINKING GETS DONE.
SO ALL THE, SORT OF THE FAMOUS
LITERARY DRINKING IS OFTEN
ASSOCIATED WITH LAUNCH PARTIES.
SO THAT'S MY JOB TONIGHT.

Iris says AT THIS POINT
IN THE PROCESS OF PUBLISHING,
"THE TRADE MISSION," EVERYTHING
IS GOING FABULOUSLY WELL.
THE BOOK IS HERE, IT'S IN ON
TIME, IT'S IN BOOKSTORES ACROSS
THE COUNTRY, IT WAS PUBLISHED
LAST MONTH IN THE UK, THE
REVIEWS ARE INCREDIBLE, AND
ANDREW IS ABOUT TO GO ON A
NATIONAL TOUR.
SO WE'RE CELEBRATING TONIGHT,
THE ROOM IS FULL OF PEOPLE, WE
COULDN'T BE HAPPIER.

Andrew says SO FAR IT'S
BEEN PRETTY CLOSE TO BEST CASE
SCENARIO IN TERMS OF THE
CRITICAL RESPONSE.
MY PERSONAL FAVOURITE IS HAVING
HAD MY WORK COMPARED TO IAN
McKEWAN, WHO IS A NOVELIST I
HUGELY ADMIRE.
SO HAVING THAT KIND OF
COMPARISON IS REALLY, REALLY
NICE.

At the party, a woman in her thirties speaks. A caption reads "Michelle Berry. Author."

She says I THINK
ANDREW IS SENSATIONAL, NOT ONLY
AS A PERSON, HE'S CHARISMATIC,
HE'S INTELLIGENT, HE'S
POLITICALLY MOTIVATED, AND
ACTIVE IN A LOT OF INCREDIBLE
THINGS IN OUR WRITING COMMUNITY,
BUT HE'S ALSO AN INCREDIBLY
TALENTED WRITER.
HIS "LOTS GIRLS" BLEW ME AWAY.
I HAVEN'T READ "THE TRADE
MISSION" YET, BUT I CAN'T WAIT
TO, I'M GOING TO BUY IT TONIGHT.
"LOST GIRLS" WAS JUST ONE OF
THOSE BOOKS YOU JUST CAN'T PUT
DOWN, AND IT CROSSED THE
BOUNDARY BETWEEN GENRE WRITING
AND LITERARY WRITING.

At the party, a woman in her thirties speaks. The caption changes to "Eliza Clark. Author."

She says WHAT ANDREW DOES
REALLY WELL IS HE WALKS THE LINE
BETWEEN COMMERCIAL FICTION AND
LITERARY FICTION BEAUTIFULLY.
HE MAKES SOMETHING THAT'S A PAGE
TURNER AND IT'S FAST PACED, AND
YET IT'S GOT ELEMENTS THAT MAKE
YOU THINK, IT'S GOT ETHICAL
QUESTIONS.
I THINK HE DOES THAT REALLY
WELL.

Andrew stands behind a microphone and addresses the crowd.

He says FINAL THANKS,
BECAUSE THIS IS MY JOB, RIGHT,
TO SAY THANKS.
I WANT TO SAY THANKS TO ALL OF
YOU FOR COMING, BECAUSE YOU
KNOW, YOU'RE--
YOU SPEND 3 AND A HALF YEARS IN A ROOM,
YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE
DOING, YOU DON'T KNOW WHETHER
THIS THING IS GOING TO WORK OR
NOT.
AND AT THE END OF THIS LONG
STAGE, TO HAVE A PARTY LIKE
THIS, IT FEELS, FOR ONE DAY AT
LEAST, IT FEELS REAL.
SO THANKS FOR COMING, AND ENJOY
YOURSELVES.
[ applause ]

Back in the studio, Tina says "THE TRADE
MISSION" BY ANDREW PYPER IS
PUBLISHED BY HARPER FLAMINGO
CANADA.
ANDREW MENTIONED THAT HE HAD
APPEARED AT BOOK EXPO WITH
FELLOW WRITER, ANN-MARIE
MacDONALD.
SHE IS THE AUTHOR OF, "FALL ON
YOUR KNEES," THAT GREAT NOVEL
FROM A FEW YEARS BACK.
WELL, WE CAUGHT ANNE-MARIE'S
TALK AT BOOK EXPO, AND FOUND HER
DESCRIPTION OF THE WRITING
PROCESS ENLIGHTENING.

Ann Marie stands behind a podium and addresses a crowd. A caption reads "Ann Marie MacDonald."

She says GOING
AROUND, BEING A WRITER, IS VERY
DIFFERENT FROM WRITING, AND I
RARELY TALK ABOUT MY ACTUAL
EXPERIENCE OF WRITING.
HOW CAN I DESCRIBE IT?
PRESSING A FORK SLOWLY INTO MY
LEFT RETINA.
[ laughing ]
OR WHERE I WRITE, IN A WELL
APPOINTED, SPACIOUS OFFICE, TOO
GOOD FOR ME, FAR TOO GOOD FOR
ME.
HOW CAN I GET ANYTHING DONE IN
THIS LUXURIOUSLY CLIMATE
CONTROLLED QUITE PRIVATE SPACE?
THAT QUESTION, ACTUALLY IS A
TIME HONOURED TEMPLATE.
YOU JUST FILL IN THE BLANKS
AFTER THE WORDS, "HOW CAN I GET
ANYTHING DONE IN THIS... RAT
INFESTED GARRET, PERISHING NEW
ORLEANS HEAT, SQUALID BASEMENT,
TUSCAN TOWER?"
HOW CAN I WRITE WHEN I CAN'T PAY
THE RENT?
HOW CAN I WRITE WHEN I'M NO
LONGER DRIVEN BY NEED?
AND THE WRITING NEVER, "TAKES
OVER," MY FINGERS NEVER "FLY
ACROSS THE KEYBOARD," CHARACTERS
DO NOT VISIT ME IN DREAMS WITH
GIFTS OF HUGE SWATCHES AND
FABRIC BOLTS OF TEXT.
I DO NOT WAKE UP IN THE NIGHT
AND JOT THINGS DOWN.
[ laughter ]
I SHOW UP, I WAIT, I SIT THERE.
LIKE A CHILD PLACED ON THE
POTTY.
IF YOU SIT THERE LONG ENOUGH,
SOMETHING WILL HAPPEN.
[ laughter ]

Tina says UP NEXT, THE
STORY OF JESUS REVISITED BY
CANADIAN WRITER NINO RICCI.
AND LATER, RECOMMENDED READING
FROM RADIO DJs.

Back in the studio, Tina says NOW TO A NEW
TWIST ON AN AGE OLD STORY.
"TESTAMENT" BY NINO RICCI IS A
FICTIONAL RETELLING OF THE LIFE
OF JESUS CHRIST.
BUT THIS IS NOT THE JESUS THAT
MANY OF US GREW UP WITH.
IN "TESTAMENT," JESUS IS A CHILD
OF RAPE, THE BASTARD SON OF MARY
AND A ROMAN SOLDIER.
THAT CONTROVERSIAL TWIST RAISED
SOME EYEBROWS WHEN THE BOOK WAS
PUBLISHED LAST SPRING.
HERE'S MY CONVERSATION WITH NINO
RICCI.

Now a clip plays of Tina interviewing Nino en a studio.

Tina says SO WHAT KIND
OF MAN IS YOUR JESUS?

A caption reads "Nino Ricci. Testament."

He says WELL, UH, I THINK
IT WAS ALBERT SCHWEIZER WHO SAID
THAT YOU INEVITABLY END UP
FINDING A JESUS WHO IS A
REFLECTION OF YOURSELF OR OF
YOUR OWN TIME, WHEN YOU GO
SEARCHING FOR AN HISTORICAL
JESUS, AND I THINK THERE IS SOME
TRUTH TO THAT, IN THE JESUS I
ENDED UP WITH.
THERE ARE ELEMENTS IN HIM THAT I
STRESS THAT I THINK WOULD BE
PARTICULARLY INTERESTING OR
APPEALING OR RELEVANT TO A 21st
CENTURY READER.
AT THE SAME TIME, I DID TRY TO
GO BACK TO THE GOSPEL SOURCES
AND TO ACTUALLY BASE MY PORTRAIT
OF HIM ON SOME SENSE OF THE
CHARACTER WHO COMES THROUGH IN
THE GOSPELS AND SOME SENSE OF
THE KIND OF PERSON WHO COULD
HAVE EXISTED AT THAT TIME,
KNOWING WHAT WE DO ABOUT THAT
HISTORICAL CONTEXT.

Tina says NOW HE'S
VERY HUMAN, YOUR JESUS, AND I'LL
TALK IN A MINUTE, I WANT TO GET
ABOUT HIM BEING A BASTARD, BUT
EVEN ASIDE FROM THAT, HE'S VERY
HUMAN IN THE SENSE THAT HE'S
MOODY, HE'S SOMETIMES NOT VERY
LIKEABLE, HE SNAPS AT PEOPLE, I
MEAN, THESE WERE ALL
CHARACTERISTICS YOU WANTED TO
GIVE HIM, OBVIOUSLY.

Nino says YES, YES.
I DID GO BACK TO THE GOSPELS FOR
A LOT OF THAT.
I MEAN, CLEARLY WITHIN THE
GOSPELS, HE IS MOODY, HE GETS
ANGRY AT HIS MEN.

Tina says HE YELLS AT
HIS MUM.

Nino says HE YELLS AT HIS
MOTHER, HE SENDS HER AWAY.
HE, YOU KNOW, HE OFTEN
REPRIMANDS HIS MEN FOR NOT
UNDERSTANDING HIM.
AND HE GETS ANGRY AT YOU KNOW,
PEOPLE WHO DON'T SEEM TO GET IT.
[ chuckles ]
THEN HE HAS THIS OTHER SIDE
WHICH IS INCLUSIVE, WHICH IS
SYMPATHETIC, WHICH INVITES IN
THE MOST MARGINALISED, THE MOST
OPPRESSED PEOPLE IN THE SOCIETY,
SO THIS CONTRADICTORY NATURE
DOES COME THROUGH EVEN WITHIN
THE GOSPELS.

Tina says HE'S ALSO A
BASTARD, AND THIS IS, I THINK,
REALLY ONE OF THE CENTRAL FACTS
OF HIS LIFE.
YOU HAVE HIM AS THE PRODUCT OF A
RAPE, THAT MARY WAS RAPED BY A
ROMAN OFFICER.
WHY DID YOU MAKE HIM A BASTARD?

Nino says WELL I THINK
INITIALLY, SIMPLY BECAUSE IT
SEEMED INTERESTING, FICTIONALLY,
TO DO THAT.

Tina says YES, I THINK
YOU WERE RIGHT THERE, NINO.

Nino says AND IT SEEMED A
WAY OF BRINGING HIM RIGHT DOWN
TO HIS HUMANNESS.
THE THING I WANTED TO STRESS IN
THIS BOOK, WAS THAT I WAS SEEING
HIM AS A HUMAN WITH NO DIVINE
ELEMENT, WITH NO SORT OF...
NO SENSE OF HIM BEING THE
OFFSPRING OF A GOD.

Tina says NO VIRGIN
BIRTH.

Nino says NO VIRGIN BIRTH,
NO WAY TO EXPLAIN AWAY, I GUESS
THE MYSTERY OF THE MAN BY
SAYING, OH, HE WAS A GOD, OR HE
WAS PART GOD, THEREFORE WE CAN
UNDERSTAND HIS GREATNESS IN THAT
WAY.
I WANTED TO TRY TO UNDERSTAND
HIS GREATNESS AS A HUMAN THING.
SO SAY, WELL IF THIS PERSON WAS
HUMAN, HOW CAN WE MAKE SENSE OF
A CHARACTER THAT GAVE RISE TO
THIS GREAT TRADITION.

Tina says NOW THIS HAS
BEEN A VERY CONTROVERSIAL POINT,
OBVIOUSLY, THE FACT THAT YOU
DENY THE DIVINITY OF JESUS, AND
SAY, NOT ONLY IS HE NOT DIVINE,
BUT HE'S THE BASTARD SON OF A
ROMAN OFFICER.
YOU MUST HAVE KNOWN THAT THIS
WOULD BE CONTROVERSIAL.
I MEAN, PEOPLE HAVE CALLED YOU A
BLASPHEMER, THERE HAVE BEEN LOTS
OF LETTERS TO THE EDITOR SAYING,
HOW COULD THIS BOOK HAVE BEEN
PUBLISHED, IT'S HORRIBLE, IT'S A
SLUR AGAINST ALL OF
CHRISTIANITY...
WHAT'S YOUR TAKE ON ALL OF THAT?

Nino says MY BELIEF IS THAT
CHRISTIANITY BELONGS TO ALL OF
US.
I WAS RAISED AS A CHRISTIAN.
I AT ONE POINT REJECTED
CHRISTIANITY, BUT I AM
CULTURALLY DEEPLY INFORMED BY
CHRISTIANITY.
OUR WHOLE CULTURE IS, ALL OF
WESTERN CULTURE IS, AND I
BELIEVE IT'S IMPORTANT FOR US TO
LOOK AT THAT TRADITION IN A
CRITICAL WAY, AND TO TRY AND
UNDERSTAND ITS LEGACY.
AND FOR ME, THIS BOOK WAS, IN
PART, AN ATTEMPT TO DO THAT, AN
ATTEMPT TO ENTER THE TRADITION
THROUGH A DIFFERENT DOOR.

Tina says SO DID THE
CONTROVERSY SURPRISE YOU, OR DID
YOU PRETTY MUCH EXPECT IT?

Nino says WELL, IT WAS HARD
FOR ME TO KNOW, REALLY.
IT'S HARD IN OUR SOCIETY, REALLY
TO SAY WHERE PEOPLE STAND
SPIRITUALLY.
I THINK THAT'S PART OF THE
PROBLEM.
MOST PEOPLE PROFESS SOME KIND OF
LIP SERVICE TO A FAITH, USUALLY
IT'S CHRISTIANITY, BECAUSE
THAT'S THE FAITH WE'RE RAISED
IN.
THEY BELIEVE IN GOD, IF YOU
PRESS THEM, THEY'LL SAY THEY
BELIEVE IN GOD, BUT IT'S A KIND
OF STAR WARS RELIGION, REALLY.
THEY BELIEVE IN THE FORCE, BUT
THEY CAN'T REALLY DESCRIBE IT.
[ laughing ]
THEY DON'T REALLY KNOW THE BIBLE
STORIES, BUT THEY THINK THERE
MIGHT BE SOMETHING TO THEM.

Tina says THEY KNOW
JOSEPH AND THE MANY COLOURED
COAT BECAUSE OF THE BROADWAY
PLAY.

Nino says YES, BECAUSE OF
THE MUSICAL.
AND I THINK THAT...
WHEN I WROTE THE BOOK, I
THOUGHT, WELL I'M REALLY
ADDRESSING MYSELF TO THAT GROUP,
AND I REALIZE THERE IS STILL A
GROUP WITHIN SOCIETY THAT IS
STRONGLY ATTACHED TO THE
CHRISTIAN FAITH AND STRONGLY
INVESTED IN ITS TRADITIONS, AND
STRONGLY INVESTED IN THE NOTION
OF THE DIVINITY OF CHRIST.
I WASN'T REALLY DIRECTING MYSELF
TO PEOPLE LIKE THAT.
I DON'T THINK I'M GOING TO
CONVERT THEM...

Tina says MM-HMM.

Nino says ... WITH THIS
BOOK.
I WAS MORE INTERESTED IN THAT
LARGE MASS IN THE MIDDLE, OF
PEOPLE WHO HAVE ONE FOOT IN
CHRISTIANITY, WHICH WAS REALLY
THE ONLY SPIRITUALITY THAT THEY
WERE GIVEN IN THEIR LIVES, YET
DON'T REALLY UNDERSTAND MUCH
ABOUT IT, DON'T REALLY FEEL
DEEPLY COMMITTED TO IT, AND
HAVEN'T REALLY THOUGHT MUCH
ABOUT IT, BUT DON'T HAVE A FORUM
IN OUR SOCIETY FOR DISCUSSING
IT.

Tina says BUT THAT'S
INTERESTING, BECAUSE I OFTEN
WONDER WHY THERE ISN'T A FORUM
IN OUR SOCIETY.
WHY IS IT THOUGHT TO BE SO
BIZARRE TO DISCUSS GOD OR JESUS,
I MEAN REALLY, IN SOME CIRCLES,
IF YOU EVEN MENTION THE WORD,
PEOPLE THINK YOU'RE A
FUNDAMENTALIST, YOU KNOW,
EXCEEDINGLY BIZARRE PERSON.

Nino says YEAH, YEAH.

Tina says WHY IS THAT?
I MEAN, IT IS SUCH A HUGE PART
OF OUR LIVES.
DO YOU SENSE THAT RELUCTANCE,
TOO, THAT PEOPLE JUST DON'T WANT
TO MENTION THIS?

Nino says I DO, VERY MUCH
SO, VERY MUCH SO, AND I THINK IT
IS PARTLY BECAUSE THERE IS A
CORE OF PEOPLE WHO ARE DEEPLY
COMMITTED, WHO HAVE, IN A SENSE,
COLONIZED THE GROUND.

Tina says THE
RELIGIOUS RIGHT IN THE U.S. FOR
INSTANCE.

Nino says YES, IF YOU'RE
NOT PART OF THEM, THEN YOU DON'T
REALLY WANT TO BE ASSOCIATED
WITH THAT KIND OF EXTREME VIEW,
AND THERE'S NO MIDDLE VIEW TO
TAKE.
AND I THINK THAT'S A PROBLEM.
I THINK THAT WE'RE AT A KIND OF
SPIRITUAL CRISIS POINT IN OUR
CIVILIZATION I GUESS, AND WE SEE
IT IN THE OUTCROPPING OF GROWTH
OF CULTS, SORT OF NEW AGE
PHILOSOPHIES, SO PEOPLE ARE
CLEARLY SEARCHING FOR SOMETHING,
AND YET WE HAVEN'T REALLY DEALT
WITH THE LEGACY WE HAVE, AND I
THINK WE NEED TO, BEFORE WE CAN
GO FORWARD.

Tina says WERE YOU
SEARCHING FOR SOMETHING?
YOU WERE RAISED CATHOLIC, RIGHT?

Nino says I WAS.

Tina says DID YOU WANT
TO BE A PRIEST?
YOU DID WANT TO BE A PRIEST.

Nino says I DID WANT TO BE
A PRIEST.

Tina says I WANTED TO
BE A NUN FOR A MINUTE.
HOW LONG DID YOU WANT TO BE A
PRIEST?

Nino says WELL I DID, AT
ONE POINT, ACTUALLY PROMISE GOD
THAT I WOULD BECOME A PRIEST
WHEN I GREW UP, SO THE PHASE
LASTED FOR A WHILE.

Tina says YES.

Nino says BUT IT WAS A
CRISIS MOMENT WHEN I SWITCHED
OVER.

Tina says AND THEN
WHAT HAPPENED?
WAS THERE SOME EPIPHANY YOU HAD,
OR DID YOU JUST GROW OUT OF IT?

Nino says WELL THERE WERE A
SERIES OF EPIPHANIES.
I GUESS THEY WOULD BE ANTI-
EPIPHANI.

Tina says YES, WE
SHOULDN'T MAYBE BORROW THAT
WORD, THAT'S RIGHT.

Nino says BUT MOMENTS WHEN
I FELT SORT OF AGAINST THE WALL,
IN TERMS OF DECIDING, DO I
BELIEVE OR NOT.
IN GRADE 8 FOR INSTANCE, WE WERE
ALL FORCED TO DO SOMETHING
CALLED CONFIRMATION IN THE
CATHOLIC CHURCH, WHICH YOU'D
KNOW.

Tina says SURE, YEAH.

Nino says WHERE IT'S REALLY
THE FIRST TIME IN YOUR LIFE
WHERE YOU'RE CALLED ON, AS A
REAL PERSON, TO COMMIT YOURSELF
TO YOUR FAITH, AND AT THAT POINT
I THOUGHT, "WELL WHAT AM I
DOING?
DO I BELIEVE THIS?
I DON'T FEEL THAT SPARK, AND YET
I'M GOING THROUGH THESE
MOTIONS."
AND SO THAT REALLY STARTED THE
PROCESS, AND SUBSEQUENTLY I
JOINED AN EVANGELICAL CHURCH,
THINKING THAT THAT WOULD BRING
ME BACK TO THE SOURCE AND AWAKEN
THAT FIRE OF FAITH, AND I WENT
TO BIBLE CLASS, AND SO ON, AND
AGAIN, I WENT THROUGH THIS
RITUAL WHERE I ACCEPTED JESUS AS
MY PERSONAL SAVIOUR AND I SIGNED
A DOCUMENT TO THAT EFFECT, AND
SO ON, BUT IT FELT FALSE, AND I
THINK THAT WAS A MOMENT WHERE I
DECIDED THAT THIS IS NOT WORKING
FOR ME, AND DECIDED I HAD TO
FIND SOME OTHER WAY OF MOVING
FORWARD.

Tina says DID THE BOOK
LEAD YOU ANYWHERE?
I MEAN, DID YOU COME TO A KIND
OF PERSONAL UNDERSTANDING OF
JESUS THAT PERHAPS YOU HADN'T
HAD BEFORE?

Nino says I THINK SO, I
THINK SO.
THAT WASN'T MY INTENTION, I MUST
SAY.
I THINK MY MAIN INTENTION REALLY
WAS...

Tina says I THINK
THOSE WRITTEN PROMISES WERE IN
THE BACKGROUND.
YOU WERE SAYING, "I BETTER GET
ON WITH THIS."

Nino says I THINK IN MANY
WAYS I HAVEN'T REALLY LIVED DOWN
MY CATHOLIC UPBRINGING, BUT IN
ONE WAY OR ANOTHER I'VE ALWAYS
COME BACK TO IT.
BUT I THINK AT THE OUTSET, I
THOUGHT, FIRST, YES, I WANTED TO
WRITE AN INTERESTING BOOK, A
GOOD NOVEL.
I WANTED TO SEE THIS CHARACTER
DIFFERENTLY, AND I THOUGHT THAT
I MIGHT END UP SEEING HIM AS A
KIND OF CULT LEADER, OF THE KIND
THAT WE SEE IN OUR DAY.
A DELUDED CULT LEADER,
MEGALOMANIACAL, WHO THOUGHT HE
WAS THE SON OF GOD, AND THROUGH
THIS MANIA, ENDED UP CAUSING HIS
OWN DEATH.
I DON'T THINK I FOUND THAT.
I THINK I FOUND SOMEONE WHO
SEEMED TO BE A FAIRLY WISE
TEACHER, WHO PROBABLY DID NOT
THINK OF HIMSELF AS THE SON OF
GOD OR SOME SORT OF DIVINELY
INSPIRED, OR DIVINELY DERIVED
LEADER.
BUT THOUGHT OF HIMSELF AS
SOMEONE WITH SOMETHING
INTERESTING TO SAY, SOMETHING
NEW TO SAY.

Tina says ONE REVIEWER
SAID OF YOU, THAT EVEN THOUGH
YOU WERE NOT A PRACTISING
CATHOLIC, THAT YOU WERE STILL A
VERY CATHOLIC WRITER, I THINK
SHE SAID, IN THE TRADITION OF
GRAHAME GREENE.
AND THEN WENT ON TO SAY, A MAN
TORTURED BY THE CONCEPT OF
GUILT.
[ laughing ]
IS THAT--

Nino says MY GOD.

Tina says NINO, YOU
MAY CONFESS, IF YOU LIKE.
ARE YOU A MAN TORTURED BY THE
CONCEPT OF GUILT.

Nino says I CERTAINLY HAVE
BEEN IN MY LIFE.
I THINK I--

Tina says IT IS A
CATHOLIC KIND OF THING.

Nino says YES, WE DON'T
HAVE EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS TO GUILT,
BUT...

Tina says NO.

Nino says BUT WE HAVE OUR
OWN PARTICULAR BRAND OF GUILT.
FORTUNATELY WE CAN GO TO
CONFESSION AND BE ABSOLVED.

Tina says THAT THE
GREAT THING ABOUT CATHOLICISM,
THAT'S RIGHT.
YOU GO IN THERE, YOU GET IT OVER
WITH, CLEAN SLATE.

Nino says YES, BUT I THINK
WHAT HAPPENS TO A LOT OF US, IS
WE STOP GOING TO CONFESSION, SO
THE GUILT ACCUMULATES OVER
DECADES.
BUT I CERTAINLY FEEL THAT
LEGACY.
WHEN I THINK BACK ON THE
CATHOLIC BOY I WAS IN GRADE 1,
AND WHO I AM NOW, I STILL SEE SO
MANY LINKS BACK.
YOU KNOW, I DID THE MISSIONARY
WORK, I WENT TO AFRICA AND
TAUGHT FOR 2 YEARS.

Tina says YOU DID?

Nino says EVEN THOUGH IT
HAD NO RELIGIOUS CONTEXT, IT
CLEARLY WENT BACK TO THE STORIES
THAT OUR PRIESTS USED TO COME
AND TELL US ABOUT THE THIRD
WORLD COUNTRIES THEY HAD BEEN TO
AND THE WORK THEY HAD DONE
THERE.
SO I SAW THE LINKS THERE.
I'VE WRITTEN A NOVEL ABOUT
JESUS.
WELL CLEARLY THAT GOES BACK TO
THOSE STORIES IN MY GRADE 1
READER ABOUT THIS GREAT HERO
FIGURE WHO I HAD AS A CHILD, SO
IT'S ALL THERE IN SOME FORM, AND
I AM, WHAT SOMEONE REFERRED TO
AS A CULTURAL CATHOLIC, I GUESS.
IT'S THERE, IT'S IN MY BLOOD AND
I WON'T ESCAPE IT.
BUT I'M GRATEFUL FOR A LOT OF
IT.
I'M GRATEFUL, FIRST OF ALL FOR
THE WAY IT SPURRED MY
IMAGINATION.
I MEAN CATHOLICISM IS A RELIGION
OF THE IMAGINATION, IT'S A
RELIGION OF ICONS, OF IMAGES, OF
STORIES, OF MIRACLES, OF SAINTS,
IT'S REALLY A PAGAN RELIGION IN
THAT REGARD.
THERE'S A SPIRIT IN EVERY ROCK.
AND IT'S GREAT, CERTAINLY FROM
AN IMAGINATIVE POINT OF VIEW,
IT'S GREAT FROM A WRITER'S POINT
OF VIEW.
AND IT ALSO HAS I THINK, GIVEN
ME THIS LIFE LONG SPIRITUAL
QUEST.
IT MIGHT BE A FRUITLESS QUEST,
YOU KNOW I THINK I'M COMING TO
THAT DIRE CONCLUSION THAT ALL
THAT AWAITS US IS MINERAL DEATH,
BUT NONETHELESS, IN THE INTERIM,
I FEEL MOVED TO EXPLORE SOME OF
THE BIGGER QUESTIONS, AND I
THINK CATHOLICISM WAS THE FIRST
MOVER THAT SENT ME IN THAT
DIRECTION.

Tina says YOUR JESUS
IS A FASCINATING CHARACTER, AND
THE BOOK'S A GREAT READ.

Nino says THANK YOU.

Tina says "TESTAMENT"
BY NINO RICCI IS PUBLISHED BY
DOUBLEDAY CANADA.

The book appears briefly.

Tina continues AND THAT'S A WRAP FOR THIS
EDITION OF "IMPRINT."
WE LEAVE YOU TONIGHT WITH SOME
READING RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE
STAFF AT Q107 RADIO STATION IN
TORONTO.
THANKS FOR WATCHING AND
GOODNIGHT.

A book appears in a circular border formed by the word "Imprint." Above, a text reads "Recommended reading from Q107."

Shots of people working in a radio station fly by.

John appears in a square window against a black background. Underneath him, a caption reads "John Derringer." Next to him, a text reads "Napoleon and Wellington by Andrew Roberts." John's in his late thirties and clean-shaven with short brown hair.

He says I'M READING,
IT'S THE STORY OF THOSE 2, THE
DUKE OF WELLINGTON AND NAPOLEON,
WHO YOU KNOW, CAME REALLY DID
BATTLE IN 1815, AT THE BATTLE OF
WATERLOO, WHEN NAPOLEON GOT HIS
BUTT KICKED.
AND I THINK IT'S A FASCINATING
STORY ABOUT 2 GUYS WHO DIDN'T
KNOW EACH OTHER, BUT KNEW OF
EACH OTHER, AND YOU KNOW, HOW
REALLY THE FUTURE OF EUROPE WAS
DECIDED BY THESE 2 GUYS WHO HAD
EITHER VASTLY OVERRATED OR
UNDERRATED EACH OTHER, AND IT'S
A PRETTY INTERESTING STUDY.

Craig appears in a square window against a black background. Underneath him, a caption reads "Craig Venn." Next to him, a text reads "Old Gods Almost Dead by Stephen Davis." Craig's in his thirties and clean-shaven with long brown hair.

He says I'M CURRENTLY
READING,
THE STORY OF THE ROLLING STONES,
A 40 YEAR ODYSSEY, AND ANYBODY
WHO'S A STONES FAN, YOU'VE GOT
TO READ IT.
WITH THEM BEING IN TOWN AGAIN ON
TOUR, IT'S AN AMAZING STORY AND
AN AMAZING BAND.

Andrew appears in a square window against a black background. Underneath him, a caption reads "Andrew Burns." Next to him, a text reads "Ghost Rider by Neil Peart." Andrew's in his early thirties with short brown hair and a beard.

He says THE BOOK I'M
READING IS,
HE'S THE DRUMMER IN RUSH, AND
NEIL SUFFERED A FEW LOSSES OVER
THE PAST FEW YEARS, AND
ESSENTIALLY WHAT THE BOOK IS
ABOUT IS, HE HOPPED ON HIS
MOTORCYCLE AND TRAVELLED ACROSS
CANADA, DOWN THROUGH THE STATES
AND INTO MEXICO.
AND IT'S A SERIES OF LETTERS HE
SENT OFF TO HIS FRIENDS, AND
HE'S A VERY PRIVATE GUY, HE'S AN
INTENSELY PERSONAL GUY, SO
YOU'RE REALLY GETTING INTO THE
HEAD SPACE OF A MUSICIAN WHO
REALLY KEEPS TO HIMSELF, AND
SORT OF DEAL WITH HIS LOSS AND
IT'S A FANTASTIC STORY.

Jessica appears in a square window against a black background. Underneath her, a caption reads "Jessica Baker." Next to her, a text reads "God and the Evolving Universe by James Redfield." She's in her thirties with long curly brown hair.

She says RIGHT NOW I'M
READING,
AND I JUST STARTED IT, SO I'M
NOT TOO SURE HOW IT'S GOING TO
END UP.
BUT THE REASON I'M READING IT,
IS BECAUSE IT'S A FOLLOW UP TO
HIS FIRST NOVEL, "THE CELESTINE
PROPHECY," WHICH IS MY FAVOURITE
BOOK, AND THE PREMISE OF IT IS
SORT OF HUMAN EVOLUTION AND
PLANETARY EVOLUTION COLLIDING.
IT'S ABOUT INSIGHTS AND IT'S
OPTIMISTIC AND POSITIVE.
IT'S A GOOD BOOK.

Theme music plays as the end credits roll.



Special thanks, Monsoon Restaurant and the Paddock.

Imprint. C/O TVOntario. P.O. Box 200. Station Q, Toronto, Ontario. M4T 2T1.



Fax: 416-484-2780.



E-mail: imprint@tvo.org.



Website: www.tvo.org/imprint



A production of TVOntario, The Ontario Educational Communications Authority.

Watch: Imprint season 14 episode 4