Maranda Pleasant: What makes you come alive or inspires you?

Kit Williamson: The act of creating something—really, anything. Writing stretches me to my limits and affirms my potential, all while making me aware of my flaws, my mortality, and how much more I have to learn. It’s a singular feeling, both spiritual and corporeal, and I like to think it sparks the same inspiration and curiosity in a child that it does in an old man.

MP: What makes you feel vulnerable?

KW: Sharing my work, with producers, with actors, with the Internet. Unless you have a huge ego, I think it requires a tremendous amount of bravery to keep putting yourself out there, knowing that you will get rejected most of the time.

MP: If you could say something to everyone on the planet, what would it be?

KW: Don’t give up on each other.

MP: How do you handle emotional pain?

KW: I usually try to write through it and end up digging myself into a deeper hole. When I’m ready to climb out, I attempt to put myself in the vicinity of happiness—getting a cappuccino and reading a good book, buying tomatoes at the farmers market, riding the Ferris wheel at the Santa Monica Pier. If none of that works, I chase my cat around the house.

MP: How do you keep your center in the middle of chaos? Do you have a daily routine?

KW: I carry around a notebook that is equal parts day planner and journal. Every morning, I check to see what the agenda for the day is, and if there isn’t a plan, I make one. I strive to fill the rest of the page with miscellaneous thoughts and ideas and go back through and fill sparse pages as well. If I start skipping days, I know I’m off course and need to take a step back and ground my life.

MP: What’s been one of your biggest lessons so far in life?

KW: I think there’s a lot of power in admitting that you don’t know everything. Too many people get caught up in the idea that they are experts in their field and forget to keep growing and learning.

MP: What truth do you know for sure?

KW: That you can never know anything for sure.

MP: Tell me about your latest projects.

KW: My character Ed Gifford returned to Mad Men this season, and I am about to shoot a second season of the web series I created, called EastSiders, a very dark comedy about a gay couple trying to stay together after infidelity shakes their relationship. We just raised over $150,000 on Kickstarter, and I can’t wait to get back to making the show!

MP: Why are these important to you?

KW: I think it’s really important to depict complex, flawed LGBT characters, because we are all connected by our humanity. And I think that crowdfunding has become such a powerful tool to tell stories that might not find financing otherwise—like a dark comedy about infidelity, for example!



Kit Williamson is on AMC’s final season of Mad Men as Ed Gifford. Kit is best known for the award-winning web series EastSiders that premiered on, which he writes, directs, and stars in.


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