David Simon is an American journalist, writer, and producer.
Simon was raised in the Washington, D.C., suburb of Silver Spring, Maryland. He became interested in journalism as a young boy through his father, an ex-newspaperman. After graduating in 1983 he became a staff reporter and He worked for The Baltimore Sun City Desk for twelve years.
Simon's absence from The Sun resulted in his first book Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets (1991). The book was based on his experiences shadowing the Baltimore Police Department homicide unit during 1988. In 1997 he co-authored, with Ed Burns, The Corner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood, book about West Baltimore community dominated by a heavy drug market.
Simon was the creator, show runner, executive producer and head writer of the HBO drama series The Wire. Many of The Wire's characters and incidents also came from Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets. Again he worked with Ed Burns on creating the show.
Edward P. Burns is an American screenwriter, novelist, and producer. He has worked closely with writing partner David Simon. Burns is a former Baltimore police detective for the Homicide and Narcotics divisions, and a public school teacher. He often draws upon these experiences for his writing.
Burns served in the infantry during the Vietnam War. Following his retirement from the police force he became a teacher in the Baltimore public school system. He taught seventh and eight grade. Psychologically, he compared the experience of teaching to the Vietnam War. He found the experience profoundly challenging because of the emotional damage that the vast majority of his students had already experienced before reaching the classroom. He saw his primary role as instilling caring behavior in his pupils. He felt his major impact was in giving the children an example of an "adult who's consistent, who's always there, who always comes through with what he said, then that's a new world for them." He became parter with Simon in 1997.