Drew Proffitt, co-creator, producer and writer of the groundbreaking hit TV show House Husbands reveals the books that influenced him:
The BFG by Roald Dahl
Because it reminded me of my grandfather who was very tall and English like the BFG. It was one of the first books to capture my imagination as a child. And it had fart jokes.
We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
It was good to see a depiction of a mother who didn’t really love her child. Although ultimately she did at the end, I thought that was an interesting and refreshing portrayal. If I had a child I probably wouldn’t love it either so I can sympathise with her.
Cat’s Eye by Margaret Atwood
It’s about bullying and I was bullied as I child and I felt sorry for myself, so I enjoyed that. The way bullying can still affect you as an adult resonated with me because I’m still recovering and in therapy. I’m making great progress.
The Bedwetter by Sarah Silverman
Just because I love her mind. It’s a great title and she was a bedwetter as a child and it followed her through her teens. There’s a theme there because she was bullied for it and she overcame it. She’s also just hilarious.
Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin
I first noticed these books via the TV series adaptation. It was on past my bedtime but I’d sneak up late to catch a glimpse of the bathhouse scenes. A few years later I discovered the books at a family friend’s house and became hooked. The structure of the books is very similar to the way television is plotted, so it’s obvious why they have translated so well to the screen. Every time a new book comes out, it’s like catching up with new friends. I’ll be devastated when they end.
All that Happened at No. 26 by Denise Scott
I loved this book. It’s a really warm depiction of a family and I love her sense of humour. I got to meet her recently on House Husbands when she was a guest star. I’ve seen her live but she’s also such a great writer – I was more excited to see her as a fan of the book.
Just Kids by Patti Smith
I loved this book. It was really inspiring. I like the friendship and love that she had with her friend [Robert Mapplethorpe] – between a straight woman and a gay man that I can relate to. It made me wish I was born a generation before. I’ve always wanted to live in New York but the New York I want to live in is in the 1970s and 80s, not now, and that let me into that world that I’ll never get to live in because I’m far too young. Beautifully written too.
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
I love all his books. I’ve seen him live and he’s adorable and I’d like him to marry me. I love his mind and want to be him when I grow up. It’s laugh out loud.
Penny Pollard series by Robin Klein
This was a series starring the character Penny Pollard and I was obsessed with her. Anne James did the wonderful illustrations and they’re a major part of it. I used to write a column on writing for a kids magazine at school, called Drew’s page, and I contacted Robin Klein’s publisher. I was going to Melbourne for a holiday and asked if I could interview her and she said ‘Yes!’ So she gave me tea, fed me cake and I interviewed her at the age of 16!
Loaded by Christos Tsiolkas
Do you like how I know the actual book name and not just the title of the movie [Head On]?! At the time the book came out, I was around the age of the main character, living in Melbourne and homosexual and so I could relate to a lot of it except for being Greek. But I have lots of Greek friends and wish I was Greek and more interesting, because I’m just very white. Often when I read books I wish I was having the experience of the person in the book because their lives are always more interesting than my own and Loaded is definitely an example of that.
The Odyssey by Homer
I was forced to read it for classical studies in Year 12. It’s longwinded but I think I should put it on my list anyway because it makes me look smart.
House Husbands Series 4 DVD is out November 5.