Rob Same was born in San Diego and grew up in Seattle. During his run-of-the-mill dysfunctional childhood he developed an obsessive passion for books. Attempting to fit in he joined the Boy Scouts. After a brief period the relationship ended with both The Boy Scouts and Same agreeing that they were not the right kind of organization for him and that he was not the right kind of boy for them. As a preteen he stumbled upon a PBS program showing old movies by directors like Fellini, Bergman, Kurosawa, etc. and was hooked. On weekends his family regularly attended the drive-in theater; taking in a wide swath of low budget horror, science fiction, and exploitation films. These were the twin prongs of Same’s dubious cinematic education.
After graduating high school in 1980 he wrote his first novel, Mother’s got a Whip, which languished in obscurity until its publication in 2004. He attended college and ultimately graduated with a degree in Psychology.
After graduating high school in 1980 he wrote his first novel, Mother’s got a Whip, a twisted psychological gothic tale about fanaticism, sexual obsession and exorcism, which languished in obscurity until its publication in 2004. He attended college and ultimately graduated with a degree in Psychology. From that point on Same became a relentless autodidact on a variety of subjects.
Working in fits and starts Same pursued a career in screenwriting and Independent or underground filmmaking, running up one detour and into one dead-end after another, learning a great deal about the international film industry along the way; from avant-garde to art films, from B-thrillers to big budget epics, to mumblecore no-budget indies, to alternative adult video he saw the process of how films get funded, how they get made, how cast and crews get assembled, and how they get promoted and marketed, including the new realities and opportunities of online promotion and video streaming. Same also dashed off the occasional novel, snagging an agent here and there and assailing the traditional publishing industry, getting another guided tour on how things work.
At some point in all of this he ended up living in a rural hell hole coping with a new reality that seemed like a combination of Mayberry R.F.D. and Deliverance with a dash of David Lynch or Harmony Korinne’s Gummo. The old Chinese curse says, “May you live in interesting times.” These were interesting times indeed.
During his long years in limbo Same pursued an assiduous program of study, plumbing the depths of literature, film studies and everything relating to human behavior. All of which has led him to some fairly controversial conclusions about the human condition, the true nature of our sexuality, normal psychological development, capacity for reason, the origin and nature of religious and spiritual experience, our anxiety at the prospect of freedom and our retreat to bankrupt and pernicious belief systems together with the desiccated institutions that stand upon them. In the wake of Ernest Becker, Clinical Existential Psychology and Terror Management Theory he was compelled to contemplate the strategies we use to evade our awareness of mortality and the destructive ramifications of those evasions.