Navigating Hollywood, Episode 2: Daniel K. Hoh, Writer on ABC’s Station 19, and Deborah King, Transcript

The original post for this episode can be found here.

Allen Wolf: Hello, everyone. This is Allen Wolf and welcome to the Navigating Hollywood podcast. I’m a filmmaker, author, and game crater. And today we’re going to be talking with Daniel K. Ho and his wife Deborah King about his writing career and about their marriage, the joys and challenges of being married in Hollywood. Dan is a writer on ABC’s drama, Station 19, which is a spin-off of Grey’s Anatomy. Dan, can you tell us a little bit about what this show’s about and then I’d love to hear what brought you to this point in your career.

Daniel K. Hoh: Sure, Station 19 is a drama on ABC. We’re in our fourth season. It’s a show about first responders, so paramedics and firefighters who live in the same world as Grey’s Anatomy. Station 19 is based in Seattle. It is based on the real station in the middle of Seattle called station 20, but there is no actual station 19. We decided to call our show Station 19 so wouldn’t be confused with any real station. But in the show, it is only a few blocks down the street from Grey Sloan Memorial, which is a hospital on Grey’s Anatomy. And when the show started, we took one of the main characters from Grey’s Anatomy transplanted him onto our show that’s been Warren, which is Bailey’s husband. So that is the continuing thread that ties the two worlds and then every season we do, on crossover episodes that further solidify the fact that these two worlds are linked and we’ll have characters going back and forth on each show.

Allen Wolf: This seems like a really amazing career opportunity for you to be writing on the show. Can you walk us through what this journey was like just bringing you where you are today?

Daniel K. Hoh: Sure. I became interested in writing a long time ago. My first career was actually medicine. So I’m an ER doctor, but I always I knew that I wanted to write and share stories and, being an ER doctor, you get to see a lot of things and you interact with a lot of people, you hear a lot of stories just in the course of doing your job because the ER basically attracts all people, you know people who get themselves in crazy situations. And so as I was collecting these stories throughout my first career in my life then I started to want to share them because I was learning a lot about life, and I was seeing a lot of things, and I knew that my brain was such that I would analyze these things and try to draw lessons and common themes from them. Just sort of from my own growth and development. But I knew that there was probably more that I could do with it.

And so I began to explore creative writing and how to go about that. I had no idea really where to start. I didn’t know anyone else who worked in the entertainment industry, but you know, I took some extension classes at UCLA. I sort of learned how to write in the script format, bought some software, read some books, and then over the course of about eight years or so, I slowly honed my craft on the side while I was working as an ER Doc. And eventually, I got to the point where my writing was good enough to get the attention of some people that were decision-makers in the industry. I got into one of the diversity writing programs which then allowed me to get staffed on my first show. Station 19 is the second show that I’ve worked on now and hopefully one day I’ll be able to tell my own stories and create my own shows too.

Allen Wolf: That’s great. Wow. Well, you know, it’s funny because you hear different voices. I’m a fan of the podcast, Script Notes, and I’ve heard more than once, Craig Mazin has said, “You can’t learn to write by reading books,” but that’s exactly what you did. Did you read books and then that was part of your process? That’s inspiring for people that want to write and feel like maybe they don’t have any connections and they don’t have any film school experience. You didn’t have any of that and you’re a doctor while you were learning how to write. I mean that’s just such an incredible story.

Daniel K. Hoh: A lot of my extra time was spent learning this craft and so it didn’t come to me easily. Writers like Malcolm Gladwell say that in order to do anything really. Well, you guys spend 10,000 hours doing it. And I don’t know if I spent 10,000 hours, but I spent many, many, many hours, days, weeks, months, years trying to develop this new way of thinking and writing and communicating that’s totally different from anything. I’ve done it before in terms of medical training or whatever, but I had a passion for it and I knew what the end goal was. It wasn’t to become famous or make a name for myself. It was really to share stories and things that I really felt like I had been put inside me that I couldn’t just contain within myself. I just had to share it and hopefully do it with somebody that would be willing to watch or listen.

Allen Wolf: Right. Now, Deb. Did you think your husband was crazy when he was trying to do this?

Deborah King: Initially, a little bit. I said you have a perfectly great career. There are a lot of folks out there who are trying to become physicians and here you are, you know kind of going off on a tangent and exploring another industry, but I got used to it. I mean his motivation and his passion for writing and storytelling is something I haven’t quite seen before so there was just no getting in the way of that so it’s either you support or you don’t support so I completely support him.

Allen Wolf: Did you know about this passion when you first got married?

Deborah King: Not really. No.

Allen Wolf: And how far into your marriage did you first discover this?

Deborah King: First year or second year.

Allen Wolf: Why do you think this didn’t come up before you got married. Why is it something that came up later?

Daniel K. Hoh: Well, the timing of things was such that, you know, I finished residency in 2009 and took my first ER job shortly after that. I met Debbie shortly after that and I wanted to work a little bit first as an ER doctor before I jumped into trying to do a second career and so during our course of dating and getting to know each other. This writing part of me was just really, if anything, a pipe dream still like a very distant sort of occasional thought that I wasn’t actively pursuing yet. You know, I wanted to pay off some loans, make some money, you know, get a nest egg, you know, emergency fund like all those things that you sort of want to do as a physician. You delay a long time because we’re in training for so long and you’re not really making money, you’re actually spending money to get the education.

And so those early years when Deb and I first met I was just trying to get my feet settled in on the ground. But then once I felt like I sort of had a handle and some bearing, then something sparked inside me when I said, well it’s now or never. I need to start looking into this now and by then we were pretty much close to getting married and I think it was after marriage that I took my first class at UCLA Extension, and I don’t know if Deb thought how serious I was about it at the time. But then over the next year or two, I began to get more and more into it, talking more and more about leaving one career to go into another one that’s much less stable. I commend her for believing in me and for not running away and saying, I married you as this one person with a certain promise of stability and security and now you want to go do the most unstable job. We’re in the most unstable industry ever.

Allen Wolf: Was that scary for you Deb, when he starting getting to that point.

Deborah King: It was a little concerning because I wasn’t sure how serious he was and he had worked so hard to become an ER doc and he’s great at his job. So it was a little concerning, but it wasn’t scary because I knew I was going to support him regardless.
Allen Wolf: It’s interesting that you went through that part of your journey because I do hear of stories about married couples where one of them is pursuing entertainment, and sometimes that can take a lot of risks and sometimes it means seasons of things not really going well and then you have to figure out, well am I going to still pursue this or am I going to go back to you know, the other stable job? So yeah, it’s interesting to see how you navigated that together. And Deb, what is your background? What do you do for work?

Deborah King: I work in healthcare, but I work in the administrative setting.

Allen Wolf: I’d love to hear more about your relationship story. How did you two first meet?

Daniel K. Hoh: We met at a friend’s birthday party in 2010 in Santa Monica. It was a rooftop restaurant on a clear night, beautiful weather, stars were out, and Deb and I apparently had a friend in common. He was who was having this birthday party, and so I went and you know, just hung out with friends that I knew were going to be there, and then at some point in the night, I noticed her and her friends standing across the way, on the other side of the restaurant. And something inside me just made me want to go up and talk to her which can be scary when there’s somebody standing with all her girlfriends and you’re just approaching by yourself. I mean, it’s not like I was bringing all these guys with me and we’re gonna do a group thing. No, I just went in solo and tried to pick her out of that crowd and strike up a conversation, and we sort of did it. It wasn’t extra smooth that night, the conversation wasn’t fantastic, but it was enough to follow up on afterward.

Allen Wolf: What was your first impression of Dan?

Deborah King: He has the perfect Asian pop star hair, trendy clothes, and our mutual friend who had the birthday party is also entertainment, he’s an entertainment attorney. So when Dan came up to me, I thought he was some pop star from Asia. I thought he was a singer doctor. I thought he was kidding.

Daniel K. Hoh: That’s my third career.

Allen Wolf: That’s awesome. And is that hair like big? What does that pop star hair look like? Is it just all over the place?

Deborah King: Voluminous. It’s big. It’s glossy. It’s nicer than my hair.

Allen Wolf: Awesome. I cannot relate. Oh my gosh. And how long did you date before you got engaged?

Daniel K. Hoh: We got engaged in 2012, married in 2013. So yeah about two and a half years or so.

Allen Wolf: Okay. And do you remember the point when each of you looked at the other person and just thought, oh like yeah, I think I want to spend the rest of my life with that person?

Daniel K. Hoh: The first moment of wanting to be serious came really after we had our first break up the following year.

Allen Wolf: Does that mean there’s more than one breakup?

Daniel K. Hoh: Well, that was the first major one and we had maybe some small on and off things since then. But this first breakup was about, we didn’t communicate very well. We have very different styles of communication, different ways of thinking, different cultural backgrounds. I was born and raised in the United States. She actually was born and raised in Asia as well.

Deborah King: I was born here.

Daniel K. Hoh: You were born here but raised in Asia as an ex-pat and so culturally we didn’t really connect that well either and I was kind of confused, like why do I like her so much. It’s hard to find something in common and that ultimately led to us parting ways for a little bit. But then, you know during that time shortly thereafter, I snapped back and realized… well, I talked to some friends and I think they heard in my voice, I could still hear how much I wanted to be with her in some way that apparently I couldn’t hear when I was speaking in terms of me hearing myself. And so they convinced me to go back and try to get her back or I think when my friends suggested that to me. It really clicked inside me. I saw her and the obstacles that we needed to overcome, in a different light and all of a sudden what seemed impossible now seemed not only possible but something that I really wanted to actually achieve, you know success. Victory.

Allen Wolf: What were some of those cultural differences that you had to kind of work through.

Daniel K. Hoh: Well, I’ll say one of them is language. I don’t speak Mandarin at all and very little Cantonese, essentially none. Deb speaks Mandarin very well. I think when you understand a language, you also understand the culture very well, the two go hand in hand because so much of it comes from a particular nation’s culture, like the way certain phrases are said or certain ideas are conveyed.

And so I think that was emblematic of just how differently we saw the world in general because our languages were different and therefore the cultures that we had embraced and maybe even subliminally absorbed over our earlier years was very different. I have a very Americanized approach to life, kind of maverick bravado, that sort of a thing. I mean as much as you can be for an Asian who still wants to be quiet and shy and swallow your pride. Deb grew up in a different way where there’s a different understanding about how one generation relates to another, how one person sees him or herself in relation to society. All those things are almost the polar opposite of an Americanized approach. I think that played a lot into then also how you relate to somebody else in terms of even an intimate relationship. Also what your priorities are. How do you triage situations and determine what’s the most important thing to do first, second, third.

Allen Wolf: Right. And would you say that’s something that you continue to work on in your marriage?

Deborah King: Yeah.

Daniel K. Hoh: I mean, it’ll be lifelong.

Allen Wolf: Yeah, it’s very interesting. My wife is Persian so she speaks Farsi fluently so I can relate to some of the things we’re talking about. I mean there are cultural differences. I’m from Ohio, originally, and have a very different sensibility from someone from the Middle East. It’s very culturally different. Everything is forward, with emotions and passion. And, you know, I’m a Dayton, Ohio boy, so it’s very different.

Daniel K. Hoh: I can relate to you. I probably have more in common with you than I do with my own wife.

Allen Wolf: Now before you got married, some people, maybe most of us, can have an idealized view of marriage where we just think that’s going to solve everything. It’s going to be amazing, and then when you get on the other side of the marriage you think, oh, wow, this is so much. More work than maybe I imagined. Where were each of you on that spectrum of how you saw marriage before you got married?

Deborah King: Well, when you watch movies, they paint marriage as if this is like a beautiful fantasy, unicorns, and rainbows. No. So, I thought, once I get married, it’s Prince Charming and this is going to be great. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s just a learning curve. We didn’t live together before we got married. So just moving in right away and his habits and my habits. He’s a morning person. I’m an evening owl. So even that was like, wow things that we just had to get through, little hurdles. So it’s still a challenge, you know, six and a half years later. It’s still a challenge but it’s okay. That’s it’s going to be a lifelong kind of learning experience to get to know each other and acclimate and be okay. Okay with it, right?

Daniel K. Hoh: Yeah, there’s a lot to obviously a lot to learn about relationships and human dynamics in marriage. It’s definitely a mirror that is held up to you where you learn about all the ugly parts of you that you didn’t necessarily realize until somebody points them out to you or when they start to cause a lot of problems because somebody is so close to you that may be in your regular relationship with friends, or maybe even your parents, were not highlighted as much. Or they were more willing to be looked over because they were not your actual marriage partner.

I will also say that I think being a storyteller, you’re always looking for things in life that can become a good story idea and good stories almost always come out of conflict and in the subsequent resolution. Or whatever, you know sort of becomes a bad situation and so being in a marriage with somebody who’s very different. I think as somebody who sees Life as a story and always looks for the narratives and the beginning, middle, and end of a particular situation has helped me to see how the many different things that we don’t necessarily see eye to eye on.

How those things are still connected, how they’re still common themes not only in terms of what we’re different at but also common themes of how to approach the eventual resolution of them or learning that we just have to agree to disagree on some things and yet still how do we find a way to move forward rather than resigning to promote like just being paralyzed.

Deborah King: Well, I’d like to add that marriage brings maturity. We made a vow to each other and we’re in it together for the rest of our lives. And when you’re younger, if something doesn’t work out, whether it’s a job or a hobby or a boyfriend/girlfriend, you just leave right? Because that’s okay. But when you enter into a marriage, and you make that vow and a commitment to each other for the rest of your life, you suck it up and you deal with it. You grow from it. It’s not going to be perfect. But you’re going to grow from it and it’s going to be okay.

So I think marriage brings maturity and I would say that’s probably the biggest pro for me. At least I’ve grown so much and matured so much because of what Dan has taught me and what we’ve learned together.

Allen Wolf: I remember my wife and I were watching the show Ted Lasso. Have you seen the show Ted Lasso? It’s on Apple TV. Anyway, at one point he’s trying to figure out if he should stay in his marriage or not. And he asked one of the employees. He says he’s been married for maybe 20 years. He asks, so how did you know your marriage is right? He said, you know what? When I remember we went through the difficult times, it was easy. And it showed us that we were meant to be together. When my wife Ramesh and I saw that, we just laughed we thought, I mean, that’s such a lie. I mean, come on. Yeah, and I just thought, wow, for all the couples watching this, who are going through a difficult time or thinking, wait a minute, this isn’t easy. Maybe we’re not supposed to be together?

It just flew in the face of everything that we have learned. Sometimes it’s not easy. Maybe it’s a roller coaster where sometimes we’re going down the hill and enjoying this and other times. It’s like oh well, we’re getting up the hill and this is it can be a challenge. Has that felt like your experience?

Daniel K. Hoh: Well, I think if we were looking at this from a story standpoint, I would say my alt pitch for that idea would be: every time I hate my spouse, I know that I still love her, and I think that for me has been a very telling sign that this marriage is definitely something to stick with and commit to because I know how I really feel and think and believe about somebody regardless of what I’m saying.

We’re projecting to them and so, you know, when we have our fights and arguments, disagreements, or whatever you project yourself in a certain way to accomplish your goal. Or they’re trying to persuade them or get back at them or whatever but deep down inside, you know, how you really feel and what you really believe and I can say that in any difficult situation we’ve been in I know that I still want to be with her then I’m still committed to trying to live in harmony, but even more than that committed to you wanting to be the very best example of a person I can be to her, and I know that she will for me and therefore then modeling that for our son.

Oh, yeah, which is another thing. It’s not just us now. Right? We have a child and so you really learned that life is not about you and just your desires and maybe petty things that you sort of used as decision markers in the past right now. When you have a child it things shift even more to the point where even if you and your spouse are not getting along you need to like there’s an extra reason to really try to work it out or not be hasty. Illusions or decisions because now there’s a third life involved.

Allen Wolf: And did you find that having your son changed? I should ask, how did it change your marriage dynamic once you brought Dylan into the world and how many years ago is that?

Daniel K. Hoh: He’s four and a half now.

Deborah King: Yeah, I think Dylan has brought us together. You learn to not sweat the small things you pick your battles. Although having a child is challenging and it’s a lot of work but he has brought us so much joy, and he has brought us closer both Dan and I closer to each other and us closer as a family with Dylan. And so yeah, I think this was probably one of the biggest gifts we’ve ever been blessed with this child. Yeah, and one other one, hopefully.

Daniel K. Hoh: At my job when we talk about stories and stuff and a lot of times we make fun of the idea of wouldn’t it be funny if one of our characters said to you know his or her girlfriend boyfriend or whatever, let’s just have a kid together and that’ll solve all our issues and you know, we make fun of that idea. But then sometimes we want to play into the comedy of it and see how far we can take it.

I think for Deb and I in real life having Dylan didn’t solve our problems. It didn’t help us get along any better. But it was a big extra piece of glue that made us stick together much more and in times of conflict having that extra glue there and realizing that you are a unit of three and not just to make sure you think twice before deciding that you want to cut and run or say or act out something to that effect that you might otherwise be tempted to do if it was just the two of

Allen Wolf: I’d love to talk some more about that. And what’s been helpful for you in your marriage, but I’d also like to say that this interview is sponsored by Navigating Hollywood that offers The Marriage Course for Entertainment Professionals. If you’re married and you’d like to grow closer to your spouse, you’ll want to check it out. It’s a seven-week course that explores topics such as strengthening connections, the art of communication, resolving conflict, the power of forgiveness, the impact of family, and others. You can see more about it and sign up at Navigating again. That’s Navigating and while you’re there you can check out the other courses such as the Pre-Marriage Course and Alpha Hollywood as well. The mission of Navigating Hollywood is to encourage and equip entertainment professionals to live relationally and spiritually holistic lives. Dan and Deb, how do you try to work toward being relationally and spiritually healthy?

Daniel K. Hoh: I think the most important core characteristic about us that keeps us together in relation with each other, but then also in part with our community, is the fact that we both are we share the same faith. We are Christians. We have a church community but in terms of what that actually means… It means having really good social support and being very intentional in developing friendships. I think the development of solid friendships these days almost seems to be a lost art because of all the social media and in all these less personal ways that we interact now and I think oftentimes just settle for because it’s much more convenient and easier than meeting somebody in person or even picking up the phone now. We just text. I’m a big believer in being present with somebody in person, you know, face-to-face, one-on-one.

That type of environment is what really gives you the most potential for actual productive dialogue, for making connections, for getting at the honest truth about a particular situation. And then I think also developing a sense of bonding and security between you and that other person for the next time when something else hits and then you can feel like you’re on solid footing with that person and feel very safe and secure.

Deborah King: We pray as a family together every night. And as Dan mentioned earlier we are strong Christians and our faith has been at the forefront of our marriage. It’s that that bond that holds us together. We have a family practice of praying together with Dylan. He goes first together every night before bed, and we pray together as a family before each meal. We share a meal together. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen. We are very involved in our community, as Dan was saying, our church community friendships outside of church. I think having that spiritual bond and our like-mindedness in faith has let us grow closer together.

Daniel K. Hoh: We’re also very fortunate that we have our families close to us. Both of mine and hers live in the Los Angeles area. You know, it’s funny how in the first part of your life, you spend your life trying to get away from your parents as far as you can because you want to be independent. Then you have a kid and you want them as close by as they can be because you want their help. And so it’s interesting how we’ve come full circle and the fact that they are close by, means we get to see them a lot. And that makes it fun for us and they get to see their grandchild. And so that really helps too because your family is your identity and so as great as your friends are, they have their own families and their own upbringing that you didn’t necessarily share, but your family has been with you from the very start. They know you, you know them. Hopefully, if you have a good relationship with them and they’re close by, that is still, I think, the most important component of a support group that you can have in life.

Allen Wolf: As someone who’s working in entertainment, I’d love to hear the pluses and maybe some of the challenges.

Deborah King: So the positives. Well, there are perks. Free movie screenings every year. Before award season, we would get a slew of DVDs for his consideration. So those are really awesome perks. I have a husband who is extremely creative and I can always go to him to come up with brilliant ideas. Even drafting emails. He’s really good at writing my work emails. I’ll put it by him occasionally. So little perks here and there.

Daniel K. Hoh: I always say open it up with a story first.

Deborah King: Yeah, that’s great.

Daniel K. Hoh: Before you get into the nitty-gritty of your graphs and your number.
Deborah King: And all my PowerPoint presentations. He’s very charismatic. So he keeps things interesting. He’s got all these crazy brilliant ideas and it rubs off on Dylan .

Daniel K. Hoh: As a storyteller, I’ve found ways to engage Deb in my work in terms of bouncing ideas off of her. When it comes to the point of me wanting to tell a story that’s organically from me now it includes her and us, and so telling stories, especially anything that has a cultural bent to it because she and I are culturally very different and ironic in a lot of ways, but now that’s such a fascinating thing to me and so many of my ideas or ideas for the show. I’m working on ideas for the future for something that I want to write that stems out of culture and cultural classes and the reconciliation of it. And so that’s one way that I’ve found to engage Deb in terms of discussing ideas and sort of what fascinates me and because it involves her it’s something she can feel included in also and have a stake in and so that’s what really excites me about the future. If I get to tell a story one day that comes from me and us then she can be an active part of it.

Deborah King: I charge him a consulting fee.

Allen Wolf: Nice. As you should. What are some of the negatives that you’ve experienced while working in entertainment? And maybe the negatives on your marriage or that the challenges of that.

Deborah King: As Dan mentioned earlier, it took him quite a bit of time to get where he is today. He’s very blessed. We are very blessed that he’s where he is today and it’s a very competitive industry. So I think it was a challenge for me to see him struggle in the initial stages. He tried I’ve never seen anyone study like him. He would work so hard, and it wasn’t always roses and happy faces. He had to fail many times to get where he is today. And so watching him stumble and get crushed, and I had to pick him back. He’ll pick himself back up and just move on slowly, It was very difficult, but that’s because he has perseverance and his strength. He kept going. He never let anything bring him down or discourage him. So yeah, that was challenging in the beginning. So I’m glad he’s settled and he’s found a show to call home, hopefully. It’ll stick around…

Daniel K. Hoh: For 10 seasons

Deborah King: as many seasons as there are.

Allen Wolf: And what about from your side, Dan?

Daniel K. Hoh: It’s hard. I mean I’ll speak as a man. It’s hard to feel like you’re failing. I know that I myself have a very strong sense of wanting to be the provider and the one who’s leading the way and can proudly thrust my fist in the air and say this is what we’re going to do and we’re going to go and have confidence in me and we’re going to do this or that together. Obviously involving my wife in the decision-making, but I think there’s a certain sense of wanting to be alpha in that sense of ultimately taking charge but also taking the responsibility of leading the way for our family.

And when there’s something that you want to do not directly family-related but something that’s so important to you that you’re so passionate about and it’s such a struggle to get it done. Then that affects your psyche and it bleeds into all the other areas of your life too. And so for all the writing competitions and writing programs and cold query emails and letters that I sent out to people trying to get someone to notice me, read my material, make a connection, getting an agent, finding a manager, a writing coach. I’ve gone down those roads so many times before I ever found my first hint of success like somebody actually responded. They took the time to go respond back to me, and so that was really hard to take for the years that it was like that. I mean that was truly an artist struggling type of thing. I still had my ER job. I mean, it’s not like I was really without any hope in terms of financial security or anything. But nevertheless, I felt the pain of when you want to do something so badly and you believe that you can and yet it’s just not happening and you don’t know how long it’s going to last but it’s lasted way longer than you ever thought it should last. And when you don’t know when that’s going to end, you do have a large temptation to give up on that and that can bleed into other areas of your life. You become more disgruntled about things and you have a more negative outlook because one thing’s not going right other things start to feel like they’re not going so great either.

Allen Wolf: What would you say to a couple that might be going through that phase right now? Where one of them is really struggling to make it and they are experiencing a lot of discouragement and maybe even hopelessness. What would you say to them?

Deborah King: I mean part of me wants to say, you know, hold on, you can do it, be hopeful, it’ll happen if you put your mind and your heart to it, but then you can say that and it’s just words. I don’t want to give false hope. I think what’s important is if it’s a couple that they’re married and committed to each other, whether it’s the wife or the husband. Do not give up on your spouse. If he or she fails, they’re never a failure. Okay? I don’t like the word fail. It’s never a true failure because there’s always a lesson to be learned. Just never give up on yourself because he or she can need you when things are tough when they fall flat on their face. That’s when you can shine the brightest. So just hold on to your spouse’s hand. Don’t let go. Keep supporting him or her. It may never work out and that’s okay. But what’s more important is that you guys stay together and you tackle it as a partnership, as a couple, and as husband and wife.

Daniel K. Hoh: In the end, I tend to be a practical-minded person. I just can’t help it. And so, you know, I’ve had more than a few friends who have been actually in those situations. They want he or she to pursue entertainment, they’re going through a lot of struggle and the spouse is not quite understanding it and is losing patience and is feeling the negativity that comes from rejection because that other person is hearing the word no so many times. So they bring that home to their marriage. I would say, I think it’s always helpful to feel like you have a plan. A plan not only for how to make it or try to make it in the industry, but what happens if you don’t. Is there any alternative thing for you to pursue as well that you can get excited about, that you can then bring around full circle and merge it with some creative side to you later? Maybe going straight for the creative part, in the beginning, is not.. that’s a very, very low percentage approach. I think there are so many examples in the industry. Being creative means nothing if you don’t actually have the life experience to actually draw from. A writer who hasn’t gone through a lot of interesting or difficult situations is less likely to have good stories than somebody who’s been through a lot right. And for me, I brought my medicine background, that’s where I draw from oftentimes. In terms of being the storyteller that I am, if I didn’t have that, my life, fortunately, has been good in many other ways. Good times don’t make for good stories, like I said before, it’s like you have to go through something that you learned a lot from and usually, that involves some degree of pain and trial but that actually not only matures you a lot in life like Deb said, but then I think creatively, it gives you really something to draw from even if it was painful, like so many good movies and projects and pieces of art, sculpture, and poems. They’ve all come from places of pain. There can be angst and confusion and bitterness but out of that, they get the energy to create this masterpiece that really gets somebody else’s attention because then they can relate to it too.

Allen Wolf: That’s very well said. May that be true of all of our lives, that the difficult and challenging times can be transformed into something beautiful. Thank you, Dan and Deb, for taking this time to share about your life Journey. For those of you listening, I encourage you to check out the Marriage Course for Entertainment Professionals. You can find out more about that and the other course is Navigating Hollywood has to offer at Navigating I look forward to our next time together until then.

Daniel and Deb: Bye! Bye!