What would you do differently to what you do now?
Ideally I would always listen to my own voice and my own instincts. Economics and the reality of day to day living don’t always allow us that luxury. But I know my voice has been its most authentic and I have been happiest when I I have been in that position.
Who inspires you and why?
Anyone who doesn’t let this industry turn you into a self gratifying arsehole. Most of us start out in the arts with the best intentions of making the world a better place. A very select few actually achieve that. But those that try inspire me.
What would you do to make a difference in the world?
I would like to one day help build an orphanage in Phnom Phen. But failing that, I can turn off my phone, turn off my computer and really try and connect with people. Listen to them in a very and real honest way. We need to get back to real connections. Most of us these days are in retreat from our authentic selves. I also have the privilege of writing great Indigenous stories in my work. I want to continue to do so because the relationship between black and white Australia is the great unhealed scar of this country.
Favourite holiday destination and why?
Thus far its been Ireland. The music is constant and real. The people are my kind of crazy and the scenery and history humbles me. If you tell an Irish farmer that you are a writer he is immediately fascinated. In Australia you are viewed with suspicion. I also love the Pilbara and The Kimberleys of Western Australia. That kind of countryside puts you firmly in your place. It says: Fuck you white fella!’
When friends come to town, what attraction would you take then to, and why?
I currently live in Perth so Fremantle is always the best choice. History, community and quirky watering holes. And you may even come across that rare beast: a good live band!
What are you currently reading?
I am currently head down writing a couple of screenplays so research books adorn my bedside table. The Colony – Grace Karskens (A history of colonial Sydney) and Pemulwuy – The Rainbow Warrior – Eric Wilmott. I am looking longingly at some reading for pleasure. I want to finish the last part of Cormac McCarthy’s trilogy: Cities Of The Plain.
What are you currently listening to?
I have just been in Canada, so Canadian songwriters Sarah McLaughlin and Ron Sexsmith are getting a good run on my IPhone.
It’s a cliché but right now happiness would be somewhere with a beach hut, a hammock, my guitar and the 100 books I want to read before I die. And no way to contact me!
What does the future hold for you?
I have been through some major emotional upheavals in the last few years so I started to live one day at a time. I stopped thinking about the future. It’s made me happier. However, I do want to spend more time with my twin boys. When you have kids, planning for the future is inevitable.
Reg’s epic new play, Thomas Murray and the Upside Down River commences its Griffin Independent season at the SBW Stables, Kings Cross on 13 January 2016. For more information, visit: www.griffintheatre.com.au for details
Image: Reg Cribb