EXCLUSIVE interview with behind-the-scenes game show legend Michael Whyte – Part IX

Michael Whyte (right) with host Eddie McGuire on the set of 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?'

Michael Whyte (right) with host Eddie McGuire on the set of ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?’

When we left our conversation last week, Michael was giving that all-important, incendiary advice that begins every game show contestant’s journey; Don’t just sit there watching, saying “I’d be good on that show”… Get up off the couch and apply! We then discussed his role in the production, and he mentioned that when he talks to group of contestants who have got through the selection process….

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MW: I say “Hands up who has going on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire as something on their bucket list?” and up go hands… “I always wanted to do it, I am going to have a go at it”. It’s the show where if you know all the answers you can win lots of money. It is also the show where if you guess correctly – pure luck – you can also win a lot of money… and that happens too! That’s not the same on Sale.

SH: No, there are no prizes for guessing there.

MW: No, you have to know the answer. And again, people don’t understand it till they’ve done it, but there’s a lot that goes into it. As I said; hear the question, push the buzzer, get it out of your mouth in a time limit, over and over again. Then add the pressure. Let’s say you did 5 episodes in a day and you came back the next week to do the final 3. Or maybe you started on the Friday episode in the first week so did 1, then you did 5 in the second week’s worth of records – that’s 6 – and then you had to come back another week to do 2 more. That’s 3 weeks it took you to do the whole thing.

SH: That stamina thing is a real issue, and you really have to manage your own doubt and your own energy levels.

MW: Absolutely. Those that win – especially Sale – are the ones that go “I want to win the show. Now, if I win any money, great – but I want to win the show to prove that I can do it, because I think I can do it”. That’s what happened to you. And pretty much that’s what happened to all those people that win that show.

SH: I remember during my run on Temptation – and I don’t know whether you remember this – I wanted to win the show so much that I hardly bought anything in the Gift Shop, and it made the producer a bit miffed. And that’s probably putting it mildly…

MW: Well, I was there during your run and that wasn’t the case. You might’ve had a producer on the floor; I was Executive Producing at that stage. They might have said “Oh, he doesn’t buy anything!” It doesn’t make any difference.

SH: Well, I get their point – in that they wanted closer games and all of that – and having been a producer myself a couple of times, of course you want to make good telly, and you want it to be close… but I wasn’t. And a couple of people had a quiet word saying “come on, buy stuff” and Ed (the host) was half-joking with me, “Come on, you’re so far ahead! Short arms, long pockets” and all of that. But I wasn’t doing anything that wasn’t in the rules, and I just wanted to win convincingly and safely.

MW: No, no, no – that’s fine. That’s not the attraction. I mean, the way the format is set up is simply that the Fame Game question, and the Gift Shops in particular, were designed to level the game out a bit. That’s why, when around came the Gift Shop, if it was a fridge, it was probably the best fridge you could buy. If it was a vacuum cleaner, it was the best you could buy. That’s the point and so if you thought “I need a vacuum cleaner, I will have it!” There’s other people that are going “I am not going to, because I am not going to risk it”.

We had a guy called David Bock. He won the show and he came back a couple of times to play a champion series or something.

SH: I remember Pam Barnes talking about David Bock.

MW: Tony Barber – probably the best quiz host we’ve ever seen – nicknamed him pretty soon; he called him David “spider-in-the-pocket” Bock, and he used it all the time, because David would never buy anything. And when he finally won, part of his prize was a BMW convertible. I said to him, “Have you always wanted a convertible?” And he said “Oh yes.” I said “Are you going to sell it?” He said, “Yes.” “Why are you going to sell it?” “Because my wife needs a…” What do you need? You don’t have any children, it’s just you and your wife. Why don’t you keep it?” And the bottle of champagne that we gave him on that night – you would have got one –

SH: Yes.

MW: – was the first champagne he’d ever tasted.

SH: Really?

MW: Because he always thought champagne was too expensive. I said “make sure you drink it”.

SH: For goodness’ sake, don’t sell it!

MW: He kept the BMW for about 2 months and he was guilt-ridden and he sold it.

SH: Right. That’s his particular personality I guess.

MW: That’s right. He didn’t do it for the money either. The money didn’t really change his life; it just meant that his bank balance was a lot better, and he just carried on with what he was doing.

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And I think there’s a lesson in there that bears repeating…. if you’re on a game show and you feel the producers would like you to adopt a type of game play that you’re not comfortable with… stick to your guns. 

In the lights and stress and atmosphere of being on the set, it’s easy for your decisions to be swayed. If you’ve developed an overall strategy (and it’s within the rules) stick to it. To thine own self be true. Making spur-of-the-moment gameplay decisions that you’re not comfortable with can cost you dearly. Not just in dollars and cents, but in something just as powerful, and far more haunting…

Regret.

And wondering “What Might Have Been….” 

 

A surprising challenge from Hamish & Andy…

Hamish and Andy

 

So yesterday afternoon, I was lucky enough to pop up on Hamish & Andy’s afternoon radio show, to talk about game shows, how to win them, and of course my eBook How To Win Game Shows. But if you know Hamish & Andy, you’d know that they don’t tend to do run-of-the-mill, ordinary interviews. They’re always after ways of making things a little more quirky, a little more competitive, a little more fun…

 

Exclusive interview with ‘Jeopardy!’ and ‘Temptation’ Champion Blair Martin – Part II

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Two time quiz show champion Blair Martin

 

My interview with Blair Martin continues this week, as Blair opens up this instalment with his thoughts on how we Australians (sadly) often regard those amongst us who put ourselves on the line, take a risk and ‘have a go’….

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BM: With Jeopardy!, I remember looking back at some of the footage and I’m thinking “God, you can be a smug bastard”. Something came up; “who was Moses’ brother?” In Jeopardy!, it’s phrased as an answer and you have to give it as a question. The look on my face was like “Oh really? How easy is this?” I just gave this nice answer* and Tony Barber was quite impressed. He said, “My goodness, your knowledge is really broad. It’s phenomenal.” I was like “Yeah, you know”…

Although I did try not to come across as too ‘up yourself’, because coming from a very middle class background, provincial city in the middle of Queensland… that very Australian thing; we cut the tall poppy down. And I was always bullied at primary school, and then I went to high school and the same thing happened there. Because I was the one doing school musicals and was the library monitor, and all that. And you know, you’re not a real person, are you? You’re something like a strange creature. 

SH: You’re not a “blokey bloke”, yeah.

BM: So trying not being too up myself when I’m doing quiz programs.

SH: So Jeopardy! was 1993. You came away from that with $76,000 and a new TV?

BM: Yeah! I used that television right up until Temptation gave me another one! (LAUGHS). Who’d have known my TVs for the last 25 years would come courtesy of quiz shows?

SH: After that, had you always thought that you wanted to have another crack at quiz show competition?

BM: It has always been an interest of mine. I think the Jeopardy! experience gave me a bit of a profile. So after Jeopardy! in my work as a performer I had an opportunity to offer to clients; “if you want a quiz format for your entertainment that’s a little bit better than your pub trivia, that’s actually hosted by someone who’s actually won one of these, who likes writing these questions…” I think that the trick with writing questions is you can’t make them too hard. You can be as oblique as you like, and people will be like “that’s fascinating, but why?” You want to give people enough of an opportunity to think they can win this and that they know the answer and of course, we love hearing teams argue! When they’re giving their answer they go “I told you that was the right one!” It’s great and it adds a bit of challenge. So I was doing that, and then Who Wants to be a Millionaire appeared, and there was the Channel 7 similar version to that hosted by Frank Warrick, where you had to ring up the call number, and I never got invited to audition for either of those programs. So I really wasn’t interested. There was The Weakest Link as well. I just thought “I don’t like the format of The Weakest Link.”

SH: It’s pretty nasty, isn’t it?

BM: Even though I’ve had friends who had appeared on it, I still think it rewards mediocrity, because if you’re clever you’ll get shot down – or just used – by the less clever people and then all of a sudden they will vote you off. I just disliked it. I thought it was pretty awful. Then Temptation came along, and I thought “why not?” 

SH: Did you watch Temptation from the start, in 2005? 

BM: Yes and no… and I will have to say with the deepest amount of shame and regret, I never saw you on it.

SH: (LAUGHS) You don’t have to have deep shame and regret about that!

BM: I was like “Stephen Hall, the actor? I didn’t know he did that!” It’s a bit like Matt Parkinson. He did his stuff on Sale of the Century… but there was a little something else before Temptation; I was on the very first taping of The Einstein Factor. And I thought that was a tremendous program. Being ABC, there is no money in it but it was great fun and I ended up being beaten by the woman who went on to win the Einstein Factor that year, which was 2004. I did say to her “you will go on to win this”… and yes, she did. The next year, when Temptation came around, I applied. It was 2005 and I was having dinner with some friends and one of them said “I’m going up to Channel 9 tomorrow morning. I’m auditioning for Temptation.” I thought “I’ve sent them an email for that and they’ve never responded. Oh, I know how these things work, I’ll just go up”. Totally brazen! Gate-crash the audition, basically. Two weeks after that, I got an email saying “we will be back in Brisbane on such and such date in November”. 

SH: “Actually, it turns out I am already there!” 

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SPOILER ALERT: If you hadn’t already worked it out, Blair’s gatecrashing of the Brisbane Temptation audition was a success – he did get on the show. So their November email to him was already redundant. Next week, Blair and I discuss the lead up to his Temptation experience, and what he did by way of preparation. In the meantime, you can catch up with what Blair’s up to these days at his website, or by following him on Twitter. But for now, until next week – which also happens to be next year – I’ll say goodbye, and thank you so much for all your support in 2015!

 

 

* And for those playing along at home, Moses’ brother was Aaron.

 

 

 

 

‘How To Win Game Shows’ the eBook: UPDATE!

Hello everyone, and welcome to the scheduled launch day for How To Win Game Shows  – the eBook! 

Only thing is, it’s not quite ready yet.

Gumby

All the content is done, but I’m afraid I’ve underestimated the time that editing, proofreading and getting an eStore up and running would take. So, I know I did say that it’d be ready to go by today, but if you can bear with me for one more week, I’d really appreciate it. That makes the revised launch date Sunday September 20th. I’d like to thank you so much for your patience and understanding. As a little taste of what it’ll look like, here’s the eBook’s cover:

The eBook's front cover!

The eBook’s front cover!

In the meantime, it’ll be business as usual here at the blog, with my next weekly post due on Tuesday. That will chronicle the first part of my Australia’s Brainiest Quizmaster journey – this was the show in early 2006 that pitted Who Wants To Be A Millionaire winners against Sale of the Century and Temptation winners, in a battle to win the $20,000 for charity, and the title of ‘Australia’s Brainiest Quizmaster’. I did manage to win it, but it certainly wasn’t all smooth sailing. The story of how I accomplished it begins right here on Tuesday, and hopefully there’ll be some tips and hints in there that will be helpful to you, as you learn from my mistakes.

Until then, thank you so much for your patience, and remember, you can still get a FREE SNEAK PREVIEW BONUS CHAPTER of the eBook by signing up to the How To Win Game Shows mailing list, by using the handy (if slightly squashed) email sign up box to the right! ——————————————————————————————————->

My exclusive interview with TV quiz show question writer Michael Ward – Part II

This week, as my interview with TV quiz show question writer Michael Ward concludes, I ask Michael about common contestant mistakes, his time in front of the camera, and how potential contestants can best put themselves in the shoes of a TV quiz show writer, as well as –

Oh – but I’m spoiling what’s up ahead.

I’ll stop now, and just let you read on, shall I?

Yes. Probably a good idea.

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SH: What do you like about writing quiz questions?

MW: It’s a job that can be squeezed in anywhere – something you can do outside of normal working hours if you’re employed on something else for example. You use a different part of your brain. I enjoy reading non-fiction, so digging around in books or on-line for stuff to form the basis of a question is merely an extension of that interest. Sometimes questions with a multiple choice option for the answer can offer the opportunity for a joke, which is always fun.

SH: From your perspective as a question writer, what common mistakes do you see contestants making when answering quiz questions on TV?

MW: Well, anticipation is a key – so almost subconsciously knowing the typical structure of a question can help in that regard. Of course, you can be too anticipatory. It’s a balance. Obviously you need to listen carefully and stay focussed.

SH: What do you not like about writing quiz questions?

MW: Writing questions can be a grind. When it’s prescriptive – and often it can be when producers are seeking the right balance of topics for their show – you can feel that your brain has been milked dry. For example, on a recent job I felt like I’d written every single ‘architecture’ question I possibly could, and all that remained was the ultra-obscure. I couldn’t face ‘architecture’ again. But you have to soldier on; there’s always another question you can write – you just have to find a fresh angle.

SH: You’ve also been involved on the other side of the quiz show camera, appearing as a contestant on Millionaire Hot Seat (obviously, this was well before you worked on the show). How was that experience? Did your experience as a question writer give you an edge?

MW: No no, I was on Hot Seat as a contestant while I was writing on the show. In fact, I got to answer my own questions, which was fun. They were so easy!
Of course, I’m joking.
On
Hot Seat, you’re essentially challenging yourself, as opposed to Temptation or Million Dollar Minute where you’re in direct competition with other players. So being on Hot Seat – my background in writing questions wasn’t particularly relevant, except that I guess I’d exposed myself to a broad range of knowledge in my research.

SH: As someone who’s ‘been there and done that’, what tips, hints or advice would you have for anyone wanting to be a contestant on Millionaire Hot Seat?

MW: In terms of actually applying for the show: you do the on-line quiz as the first step, then you go to an audition where you do another written quiz of 40 or so questions. If you make the cut (and many don’t) you fill out a questionnaire about yourself and do a brief chat to camera. The key thing is to make yourself sound as interesting as possible – a fun person. Sure, if you win you might plonk the money on the mortgage, but the producers don’t want to hear that. They want something interesting, like you’re going to shout your friends a week in Vegas or buy a zoo or invest in time travel. Make it up. On camera at the audition, it’s no big deal – just be yourself, smile, and relate something amusing that happened to you. No sob stories required. Then, if you happen to make it onto the show, well, it’s pot-luck really, both in terms of where you finish in the ‘order’ of contestants – thereby having a shot at the $ – as well as whether you’re lucky enough to cop questions that are ‘up your alley’.

SH: Is it helpful for a contestant to try and think like a question writer? And if so, how do you teach yourself to think like a question writer?

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My EXCLUSIVE interview with TV quiz show question writer Michael Ward – Part I

You join me today for a real ‘first’ for howtowingameshows.com – this is the very first time I’ve interviewed a TV quiz show question writer for the blog. His name’s Michael Ward, and he’s been writing for Australian television for some twenty years, right across the spectrum of comedy, light entertainment and quiz shows. I’ve known Michael for almost that long, and have worked with him on many different comedy projects for TV and the stage, but in this chat I really wanted to focus on his time as a TV quiz show question writer, to see what useful information he can give aspiring TV quiz show question answerers! Now read on…

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SH: Michael Ward, thanks for chatting to me today for www.howtowingameshows.com. In your illustrious and varied TV writing career, you’ve written questions for Spicks and Specks, RockWiz, Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Generation and Millionaire Hot Seat, Million Dollar Drop, and the upcoming Australian version of The Chase, as well as being the former compiler of the daily quiz for Melbourne’s Herald Sun newspaper, some time ago. How many quiz questions would you have written for TV?

MW: It’d have to be somewhere in the thousands. Let’s go with 3,679.

SH: Sure. What’s the secret to writing a good quiz question?

MW: I don’t know about ‘secret’ – but I guess the trick is finding the intersection between ‘knowledge’ and ‘trivia’. Something not too cold and hard and dull but, by the same token, something that’s not too trivial. A while back on Million Dollar Minute, some guy was going for the mill and one of the questions he had to answer was regarding the wrapper colour in a box of Cadbury Roses chocolates or something. For a million bucks, that is a ridiculously trivial question.

SH: Are there any topics or subject areas that you return to often, when you’re writing questions?

MW: I think most quiz question writers gravitate towards pop culture questions because we all have a lifetime’s accumulation of music, film and TV floating around in our heads. In my experience this stuff sinks deep into the memory banks, as opposed to say science or architecture (unless that’s your particular bag). Of course, pop culture is the first area where producers of quiz shows put the clamps on, simply because they get so many questions on TV, film and music. I also love travel (so, geography questions), reading (literature questions), history and sport, so I often write in these areas too.

SH: What is something that you never do when you’re writing quiz questions?

MW: I never write questions in the nude. It’s just a rule I have.
I would never transcribe a question word-for-word that I’ve stumbled across, but I’ll happily borrow from that source and re-work the fact into my own question. Also, I never consciously write a ‘trick’ question.

SH: What’s an example of a question you’ve written that you’re really proud of?

MW: I can’t think of one right now, although I seem to remember coming across the fact that Helen Keller is credited with introducing the Akita dog breed to the US – I think I wrote a question around that interesting fact. By the way, I believe it was Elton John who introduced ‘Nikita’ to the US.

SH: Are there any specific rules that you follow when you’re writing quiz questions?

MW: Not rules as such, but you try to be concise, unambiguous and frame the question in such a way that the answer is not able to be guessed immediately (which would render the remainder of the question superfluous). Ideally, you want the contestant to only buzz in right at the end of your question. A simple example: ‘Lima is the capital of which country?’ is not as good as ‘What is the capital of Peru?’ because, in the first case, as soon as you hear ‘Lima’ – the first word of your question – the answer is pretty much guessable immediately.

SH: Have you ever written any questions that turned out to be controversial?

MW: A question with the potential to be controversial will normally not make it through the filtering process – producers steer clear of anything that might, even remotely, cause offence.

SH: Have producers ever rejected questions that you’ve written? If so, why?

MW: Always. Questions are rejected for a myriad of reasons; A similar question may have already been used. The question isn’t clever or interesting enough. The wording is too unwieldy. The answer is plain wrong. It’s highly unlikely you’ll ever have all the questions you write accepted without knockbacks.

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So there’s a little initial taste of what life’s like on the other side of the whole quiz show production process. Next week, as our interview concludes, I ask Michael about common mistakes contestants make, he has some brilliant tips that’ll give you a great understanding of how TV quiz show questions are written, and I get his all-important thoughts on cute little dogs that also happen to be zombies.

And before I sign off for this week, just a reminder that my very first eBook ‘How To Win Game Shows’ is now just mere days away from release! I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and would like to offer you a FREE bonus chapter, by way of a sneak preview. To get this preview bonus chapter, all you have to do is sign up for the howtowingameshows.com mailing list, via the handy form to the right! ———->

I hope you’ll do so, and join us here in the How To Win Game Shows community… but even if not, I hope you’ll join us back here next week, for Part II of my chat with TV quiz show question writer extraordinaire Michael Ward!

 

My interview with Australia’s first ‘Millionaire’ millionaire – Rob “The Coach” Fulton! Part III

millionaire1This week, my exclusive interview with Australia’s first Who Wants To Be A Millionaire millionaire concludes. And I kicked off this part of the interview by asking Rob about the aftermath of his history-making win…

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SH: How did you handle the publicity, the spotlight?

RF: Hmmm. Publicity was not my strong suit; I’m actually a pretty shy person. Having said that, I did all the publicity that was asked of me. I’m sure there was something like 20-30 interviews for TV, Radio and print media over the following couple of days. I must say it was quite exhausting. Not having any media training didn’t help; I think I gave the exact same interview to all of the different radio stations.

SH: How did The Big Win change your life?

RF: The win allowed us to buy a house, travel the world, have a lovely wedding and honeymoon, still leaving enough left over to be comfortable. What more can I say except that it was a nice way to kick off a relationship. Now we are happily married with 2 lovely
girls.

SH: What tips or hints would you have for anyone thinking of applying to be a contestant on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

RF: I am a big fan of writing lists. Try and prepare with things like World Capitals, Melbourne Cup winners, Prime Ministers, Monarchs of England and Great Britain, US Presidents – whatever takes your fancy to begin with. You’ll soon find that you’ll be a valuable member of your pub trivia team, which might inspire you to do even more study. Whether you go on to achieve success on a quiz show is really a mix of luck and preparation. Regardless of the outcome, the worst thing that could happen through your study is that you’ve learnt a little bit more about the world you live in. Now that can’t be a bad thing!

SH: And finally Rob, I have to ask you about that all-important million-dollar question:

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My interview with Australia’s first ‘Millionaire’ millionaire – Rob “The Coach” Fulton! Part II

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As Rob celebrates his win, host Eddie McGuire seems surprised at the champagne’s behaviour.

This week, my exclusive interview with Australia’s first Who Wants To Be A Millionaire millionaire continues. Rob “The Coach” Fulton was a 36-year-old graphics operator when he went all the way on WWTBAM. His win was no accident; last week, in Part I of this interview, he outlined some of his study techniques, and he clearly had a strategy worked out for each element of the game. As you’re about to see…

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SH: What was your strategy about when to use the “50/50” lifeline?

RF: At $250K, this strategy was simple – get rid of two answers and pray that it left an obvious answer. I was really very lucky in this instance.

And this is Rob’s $250,000 question… 

In the wild, which tiger is the biggest of the big cats?

(A) Sumatran (B) Siberian (C) Bengal (D) Bali *

RF: I was most likely going to choose “Bengal” over “Siberian” Tiger, but using the lifeline removed “Bengal”. It was a fortunate escape.

SH: What was your strategy about when to use the “Ask The Audience” lifeline?

RF: At $500K, my strategy was to go for an answer that was opposite to the audience.

Rob’s $500,000 question was…

Which Ivy League university awards the annual Pulitzer Prizes?

(A) Columbia (B) Harvard (C) Princeton (D) Yale **

RF: In fact, my pre-game thoughts were to go for the 3rd most popular choice. That would have been “Princeton”, I think. I really didn’t think that Harvard or Yale were the answer. All I knew about Princeton was that Albert Einstein used to teach there. The main thing I knew about the Pulitzer was that The New York Times had won many of them, so therefore I used the New York association to opt for Columbia.

Incidentally, you can watch Rob’s last three questions (the $250,000, the $500,000 and the $1,000,000) right here on YouTube.

SH: What was your general strategy for answering questions on the show?

RF: First rule: READ THE QUESTIONS THOROUGHLY!!! I can’t overstate this. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen people bomb out because they misread the question. A silly error like that could cost you thousands of dollars! Secondly, Millionaire is as much about RULING OUT answers as it is about knowing the right answer.

SH: Did you have any mantras or self-talk? (Anything that you kept reminding yourself while you were in the hot seat?)

RF: Not so much. Maybe “fortune favours the brave”, “fortune favours the prepared mind”. I was probably focusing on breath control.

SH: How did you keep your cool when the stakes were so high?

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My interview with Australia’s first ‘Millionaire’ millionaire – Rob “The Coach” Fulton! Part I

Rob Fulton wins ONE MILLION DOLLARSI recently tweeted about this article in the Australian media, which caught up with Australia’s first Who Wants To Be A Millionaire millionaire, Rob “The Coach” Fulton, 10 years after his historic win. Coincidentally, just a few weeks ago, Rob had granted me an interview for howtowingameshows.com, so this seemed like as good a time as any to post it here on the site. Rob was very generous with his time and thoughts, giving loads of really useful tips and hints. I’ve split the interview into three parts, and Part Two will be up here next Tuesday. But right now, please enjoy Part One of my chat with Rob “The Coach” Fulton!

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SH: Rob, thanks so much for talking to me today for www.howtowingameshows.com.
By way of background, what was your life like before going on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire in 2005?

RF: Life was pretty simple for me back then – reasonably good job, but reasonably sad life. Lacking motivation and direction, probably suffering from depression. Living off my credit card (was this supposed to be a “light” interview?). Ha-ha, probably going through some mid-life crisis, I guess.

SH: Had you watched the show from its beginning?

RF: Yeah, I had always tuned in on Monday nights, but my real passion was Sale of the Century. I’d applied for Sale but the show ended its run before I got a call up. Only just making the cut in the auditions, I became acutely aware of how lacking in general knowledge I was. Hence, I set forth on a regime of study.

SH: What made you decide to go on it?

RF: Ha-ha, poverty (mostly). Well all that study that I undertook for Sale must have sunk in because I was starting to answer some of the $125K – $250K questions on WWTBAM with not too much trouble. So I thought that it might be worth my while to maybe start applying (in 2000-2001).

SH: What preparation or training did you do for your appearance on it?

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How to Win Game Shows’ Greatest Hits!

GREATEST HITS MONTAGE

As we lurch into the cold winter months*, I thought I’d take an opportunity to let you know about (or remind you of) some of the earlier posts here that you may have missed…

You can find links to all of these, and more, on the ‘ABOUT ME’ page, but here are some highlights, and the ways in which you may hopefully find them helpful…

For those wishing to go on Family Feud, all sorts of handy hints can be found in this interview with the show’s former Executive Producer Michael Pope, and in this interview with the show’s current Executive producer Pam Barnes.

If The Price Is Right is what you’ve set your heart on, this incredibly handy list of tips is well with a look, as is this part of the Michael Pope interview, where he speaks about his time behind the scenes on the show.

And for any budding Who Wants To Be A Millionaire contestants, I’d recommend this 9-part interview with Millionaire millionaire Martin Flood, which goes into great detail.

If you’d like to hear more from other game show champs who’ve been there and done that, there’s this interview with Million Dollar Minute winner Alex Dusek, this interview with Sale of the Century champ Russell Cheek, my own Temptation experience is outlined here, here, here and here… and of course there’s also my recent interview with David St John, who holds the Guinness World Record for the Most Appearances as a TV Quiz Show Contestant!

And I have more winner interviews lined up in the coming weeks, so remember to keep checking back here each Tuesday.

Over the past couple of years, quite a few game show hosts have generously given their time to be interviewed for the blog. Among them; Peter Berner (the host of The Einstein Factor), Ed Phillips (the host of Temptation), Julia Zemiro, (the host of RocKwiz), and Michael Pope (the host of Blockbusters). Of course, Michael’s a game show producer and Executive Producer too, and he speaks about his experiences on that side of the camera in other parts of our interview.

And finally, if you’ll forgive me for a bit of cross(/self)-promotion, here’s a plug for the iPhone app I created: Step-By-Step-Story.

There’s just a sample of some of the past posts from the site. I hope you find some useful stuff in there. And again, a reminder that you can find them all on the ABOUT ME page, if you scroll down to the bottom.

Next week, I’m going to take an in-depth look at a classic game show conundrum, which is also a logic problem. And it’s one that packs quite a counter-intuitive punch, getting even the most intelligent, rational people acting in the most illogical way…

Spock_performing_Vulcan_salute

Until then, Live Long and Prosper.

* Your results may vary, depending on geography.