Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Dirty Dozen, with Kim Moritsugu

Share |

May 24, 2014 - Kim Moritsugu is Open Book: Toronto's June 2014 writer-in-residence. Her most recent book is The Oakdale Dinner Club (Dundurn), which tells the story of a suburban mom who throws a dinner party with a very unusual (and racy!) motivation.

She gets into the spirit of things today, tackling our Dirty Dozen interview, telling us about leaving the corporate world for the literary, the best kind of Broadway show and the homage to her sons that she sneaks into every book.

  1. I try, and mostly succeed, to only eat food that tastes really good, though my tastes-really-good list includes such questionable items as Swiss Chalet French fries and strawberry Twizzlers, as well as gourmandish foods like sea salt chocolate, aged white cheddar, and open face lobster salad sandwiches made with Challah fried in butter.
  2. I have a(n) M.B.A. from the University of Toronto. It took me 7 years to complete it, on a part-time basis, while I was working fulltime at a middle management job. Soon after I got the degree, I quit corporate life to write fiction fulltime and make no money. Take that, Business World!
  3. I’m a dance hobbyist — in my time, I’ve taken up jazz, musical comedy, disco roller skating, tap, and hip-hop dance.
  4. Once a year, I go to New York, and see four Broadway musical comedies in three days. The ones I like make me cry tears of theatre joy. The tears are more likely if the show contains a big tap number.
  5. I’m currently into country line dancing. My favorite dance right now is the one done to the Gloriana song “Wanna Take You Home.” This one:
  6. Two food trends I can’t get with: nose-to-tail, meat-heavy cuisine; and mobbed food festival-type events that charge entry fees so you can wait in long line-ups for the privilege of paying more money to eat from a paper plate while standing.
  7. Two food trends I can get with: authentic ramen all over Toronto, like at Ryus Noodle Bar on Baldwin Street (; and artisanal freshly made Israeli-style hummus, especially as served at S. Lefkowitz in Little Portugal (
  8. In grade ten at Jarvis Collegiate, I got a final grade of 52 percent in mandatory phys.ed. “Bad attitude,” my report card said. Bad attitude toward ball and team sports, it meant.
  9. # 8 notwithstanding, I’m a basketball mom: my two sons played rep basketball in Toronto from a young age and varsity basketball at university, and one is now a professional basketball player overseas. This is why I know what terms like “box out” and “and one” mean. This is also why two of my novels include teenage boy characters who play basketball.
  10. My sons’ names — Simon and Michael — appear, assigned to minor non-basketball-playing characters, in each of my six novels.
  11. I was a band geek in high school. I played the flute, and not well, but I totally bought into the concert band — and orchestra! ¬— culture. My do-over high school dream would be to play in the drumline of the kind of marching band that covers current R&B and pop songs and executes cool dance moves while playing.
  12. I sing tenor in a 150 voice Toronto community rock/pop choir called newchoir. Being in the choir is way time-consuming, and the choir does not dance as much I wish it did, but socially and musically, it’s a bit like going back to high school, in a good way. With no gym class.

Kim Moritsugu Kim Moritsugu is the author of six novels to date, including Looks Perfect, nominated for the Toronto Book Award; The Glenwood Treasure, shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Best Crime Novel award; The Restoration of Emily, serialized on CBC Radio; and the just published comedy of suburban manners The Oakdale Dinner Club. She also leads a walking tour for Heritage Toronto and teaches creative writing through The Humber School for Writers. Visit for more information about Kim.

Check out all the Dirty Dozen interviews in our archives.

Related item from our archives