We had the good fortune of connecting with The Sparks Sisters and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi The Sparks Sisters, how do you think about risk?
Every great adventure in our lives has started with taking A Risk: a shy, sophomore Cinnamon trying out for the big high school musical; an introverted Allison joining her university improv team; a teenage Cinnamon in Connecticut submitting her first screenplay to a competition in L.A. (and becoming a semi-finalist); middle-school teacher Allison trying out for The Groundlings on a dare a few years ago; both sisters performing their original sketch show at Comedy Central Stage for the first time; and then leaving their successful and happy teaching careers to become full-time writers.
It’s the risks that form the entertaining “beats,” interesting “plot points,” and nail-biting “suspense” in our Life Stories.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
As twin sisters who had worked so hard to create our own individuality and separate careers, coming together to collaborate for the first time as co-writers…was a learning curve. Changing careers (from teachers to writers) was a learning curve. Producing our own show was a learning curve. Every step in this journey has been a step into the unknown–a risk. And add a global pandemic and sheltering in place together in the mountains—like the rest of the world, we had to choose whether we were going to Adapt, Resist, or Deny. Each has had its allure, depending on the day! But we’ve been trying to adapt.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
L.A. is such a diverse and vibrant city, and each street has its own vibe. Allison has lived here on-and-off since college, and Cinnamon has lived here for several years. Breakfast would have to be one of our favorite French cafes in the city–we are regulars at Republique and La Tropezienne. Then, for our day’s activity we’d take them either to The Getty (we love the art, the grounds, the view!) and lunch would have to be at the Original Farmers Market (so many stalls and food options!), followed by a hike at either Runyon or in Malibu (for more of a coastal view). We’d also have to take them on a day trip to Big Bear, where we spent the lockdowns and discovered beautiful trails, hikes, and wildlife. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
We took a leap of faith, leaving the known teaching world for the unknown writing one. We often think of this new career path as a marathon, and along our route we’ve definitely had invaluable supporters handing us “cups of water” and cheering us on: our students inspired us as teachers; our teachers inspire us as students—Daniel Robbins (THE GROUNDLINGS) and Toni Charline (UCB) directed and motivated us; Alan Blassberg set the pace for our independent pandemic projects; dear friends and fellow creative spirits encouraged us; and our sister, Lily Sparks (writer of TEEN KILLERS CLUB) and brother-in-law, Ryan Sandoval (HEATHERS http://rdsandoval.com) have cheered us on every step of the way.
Daniel Robbins Photography