Interview with Cat Ellington

Published 2020-06-03.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing songs in 1981, and I wrote my very first book review in 1982.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Reviews by Cat Ellington: The Complete Anthology, Vol. 1 is the first release in an ongoing book series dedicated to my considerable collection of literary analyses. And inspired by a few of those works of the late, great Roger Ebert, I chose to extract my reviews—those which had been made available in the public domain—from the open arena, that they should feature in the Anthology series.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Nearly everything I do is independent. It's my nature, what being fiercely independent. And publishing my written works of literature under my own imprint—Quill Pen Ink Publishing—is no different. I have many fitting monikers. And "The Statuesque Maverick" is indeed one of them.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Primarily by way of digital distribution through libraries – in partnership with reputable companies like Overdrive, Baker and Taylor, etc.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The fact that it is my natural born gift. For me as a writer, especially one who would be considered a prolific writer, the composition of words is somewhat therapeutic, deeply relaxing, fun-filled. Words are my second nature, a major part of my creative DNA, my dearest cohorts. And I feel empty, even lost, without them. I have always told people: "Should the words stop flowing, I'm done." Nothing in the world terrifies me more than to have the words stop coming. If I can't write, I could be of no use. Writing is my earthly calling: the world of words is the perfect utopia in whose rapture I am altogether caught up.
What do your fans mean to you?
[Laughs] I know this may sound silly, but I have never perceived myself as someone who has fans. I once teased Mariah Carey—playfully, of course—that she's my number one fan, but in truth, I have never thought of myself as being someone who would have fans. Ah yes, very childish in my thinking had I then been. Naturally, anyone in such a public position, contributing creative works as a public figure, will attract many admirers. And I, Cat Ellington, am not dissimilar in that case. Those men and women who may enjoy the work I do mean everything and then some to me. Because as a creative artist, particularly as a writer, I am a very emotional person. And I want them to feel—if only to a certain extent—what I feel as the earthly creator of the public works. I want to know that they appreciate all the hard work it takes to accomplish such works. The public at large will never fully understand the joy their appreciation gives the creative artist. Never will they. But I cherish every one of them. And I don’t take any of them for granted. There is absolutely no place for underestimation here.
What are you working on next?
Reviews by Cat Ellington: The Complete Anthology, Vol. 2, and The Making of Dual Mania: Filmmaking Chicago Style – the latter an effort that I co-authored with filmmaker Joseph Strickland and theater writer B.J. Patterson, respectively. Both are scheduled to be released on September 4, 2018. And we're remarkably excited as you can probably imagine.
Who are your favorite authors?
Stephen King (his greatness to whom I playfully refer as my "Maine man"), John Grisham, Bianca Sloane, Iceberg Slim, Carl Hiaasen, Donald Goines, Jackie Collins, James Patterson, James Baldwin, and Roger Ebert.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Freshly brewed coffee.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
With my family, of course, but I also have a number of other hobbies, including collecting charm bracelets. I swear, I am completely enamored with charm bracelets. In my personal opinion, they are a perfect representation of women: sexy, flirty, stylish, feminine, and unique. Much like with earrings, nail polish, and perfume, I feel deathly naked if I'm not wearing a charm bracelet.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Uh, duh! Through my Kindle reading app.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. It's titled "The Baby's Song."
What is your writing process?
Ink pen and notebook; hand lotion and laptop; peace and quiet; coffee, Tazo tea, or Bigelow Vanilla Chai; keyboard and handheld recorder (if the work is to be musical); bubblegum and highlighter; research journal and, of course, a little inspiration. Give a gal these things and she's good to go.
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