What She’s Watching
The only thing I watch religiously is The Rosie Show. My husband, Don, tapes it and when I get home from a long day on set we nestle on the sofa with some chocolate-and whatever other tasty treats I can rustle up-for a dose of Rosie.
Before I went on the book tour for my novel, Gemma, in 2006, I’d only heard of Rosie O’Donnell. I didn’t actually know her or have a feeling about her one way or the other. And then I met her on The View. I was speaking out publicly for the first time about the truth of my childhood and the abuse that had permeated it. I was terrified and Rosie was so kind to me. Not just before the show, but during and afterwards, too. When I left the stage it was like a dam suddenly broke-tears started streaming down my face and I couldn’t stop shaking. Rosie grabbed me in a fierce hug, saying over and over, ìYou’re big now, they can’t hurt you anymore, you’re big.î Then she gave me-someone she didn’t even know-her email address and contact information. And when I got overwhelmed and wrote to her, she wrote back. She was a lifeline during the scary days and nights of that book tour.
So now, at a different stage of my life-in which I’m content and feeling safe-I tune in to her show every weeknight. It’s a happy reminder that there are generous people out there, kind people who extend a helping hand for no reason other than the goodness in their hearts.
What She’s Reading
The last book I read was The Unruly Passions of Eug»nie R., by Carole DeSanti, who edited my first book. She’s been working on this novel for more than a decade. It was so wonderful to immerse myself in her world, to experience what it was like to be a woman in Paris during the Second Empire. Other than that, I haven’t had time to tuck into books-I’ve been so busy working on Bomb Girls, memorizing, re-memorizing and then re-memorizing again. I have discovered, after 18 years away from the acting world, that the mind of a 51-year-old menopausal woman requires a little more repetition and concentrated effort. Especially in order to retain the plethora of lines that Michael MacLennan and his diabolical team of writers keep dreaming up for me.
What She’s Listening To
I’m just going to pretend you didn’t ask this question! I am a total music illiterate. I listen to compilations my daughter, Emily, makes for me. When my son Will’s father came to visit the kids on a rainy weekend, he made several CDs for me and Don. I like listening to them. My sister, Becky, has influenced me as well. But seriously, if you plopped me into a music store and told me to pick out ten CDs, I would break out in a cold sweat. Even though I listen to stuff people have made for me, I don’t know who the artists are.
What She’s Plugging
Bomb Girls, a wonderful miniseries that is a co-production between Back Alley Films and Muse Entertainment, which will be premiering on Global on January 4. I’m so proud to be associated with this project. It follows the lives of the Canadian women who stepped up to the plate in the Second World War, risking their lives and their health to work in the munitions factories, building the bombs and bullets the Allied troops used to defeat Hitler. This story is a huge part of Canadian history.
If She Ruled the World, She Would…
Quit. At times I found the responsibility of trying to do a good job raising my three children to be almost overwhelming: the sleepless nights, am I doing the right thing, will I get them safely to adulthood? So me in charge of the world? No way!