SILVR: When did you realize that traveling was your passion?
Bob: Oh, probably when I was seven years old and managed to sneak away from my parents when we were visiting the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. I distinctly remember thinking: Boy, it sure feels cool to be off on my own in a wondrous place exploring something new. Of course, my parents were probably beside themselves with worry, but I knew right then that roaming around was a part of my nature. Later, I sealed the deal by dropping out of college and spending a couple of years traveling around the world. Ever since, I get antsy if I don’t have some road time planned that I can look forward to.
SILVR: What has been your biggest accomplishment personal or professional?
Bob: On a personal level: Convincing my wonderful wife, Debbie, to stay married to me for 35 years and raising two sons who make me proud of them (almost) every day. On a professional level, I’m proud that I’ve been able to make a decent living as a writer…because I’m pretty much worthless for anything else.
SILVR: What would you say to someone who wants to start their own business or follow their dreams?
Bob: Do it right now or you will be tortured by everlasting regret.
SILVR: Who is your biggest inspiration?
Bob: Whatever dogs happen to be living at our house from time to time. What’s that saying? “If only I could be half as good a person as my dog thinks I am.” A constant struggle…
SILVR: What “mantra” do you live by?
Bob: Well, when I’m working on a novel it’s: “Keep your butt in the chair and your head in the clouds.” Writing is hard work and you have to log the hours, but at the same time you must figure out a way to keep dreaming while you’re trying to get work done. When I’m wearing my hat as president of a publishing company, the mantra is: “You gotta keep throwing it out there.” Meaning, ignore rejection and keep on punching and eventually good things will come back to you.
SILVR: If you could travel back in time and give advice to your 20 year old self, what would you say?
Bob: Don’t worry and don’t change a thing. You’re gonna turn out OK. But you might consider sunscreen.
UP-CLOSE AND PERSONAL WITH BOB MORRIS
SILVR: What is the most memorable meal you’ve ever had?
Bob: Man, that’s tough. Story Farm specializes in creating cookbooks for great chefs/restaurants so I enjoy several memorable meals every week – research. But once, traveling in the Jordanian desert, a Bedouin family took me in for the night and for dinner in their dirt hut we sat around a fire and dipped food out of a bowl in the coals. I learned afterward that we had eaten dog. That was pretty darn memorable. And not in a particularly good way.
SILVR: Favorite band?
Bob: Stones, hands down.
SILVR: Where is your favorite place to write?
Bob: In a hotel room in bed with good coffee close at hand.
SILVR: What story does your family always tell about you?
Bob: I’m afraid there’s a long list of them, most rather disparaging. One that sticks out is the time I wrote a song (The Pink Flamingo Song) and sent a tape to Jimmy Buffet. He called me up, we talked for a while and he asked if I would be attending his upcoming concert in Fort Myers (where we were living at the time.) I told him, yeah, because we already had bought tickets. But on the night of the concert (it was Halloween) my wife and I decided to go to a party instead. The next day, friends started calling me early in the morning to tell me that Buffett had called me up on stage to sing The Pink Flamingo Song. Who knows what that coulda led to? Probably nothing.
SILVR: It’s Happy Hour…what’s in your glass?
Bob: Gin … in some shape or form and I am always experimenting.