Interview with Brian Alan Ellis

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Coffee.
Who are your favorite authors?
When I first started writing I was way into Henry Miller, Bukowski, Henry Rollins, John Fante, Salinger, William Saroyan, Hubert Selby Jr., S.E.. Hinton, and so on. I got into french dudes (Sartre, Baudelaire, Rimbaud), Russians (Dostoevsky, Chekhov), Germans (Heinrich Boll); some poetry (Sylvia Plath, Kenneth Patchen, Conrad Aiken, Jim Carroll) and theater (Tennessee Williams, Edward Albee, William Inge, Joe Orton); the short-story masters (Ray Bradbury, Roald Dahl, Shirley Jackson, Grace Paley); lots of that “Dirty Realism” stuff (Raymond Carver, Lydia Davis, Amy Hempel, Frederick Barthelme, Mary Gaitskill, Larry Brown). Recently I’ve been reading a lot of the Lazy Fascist Press writers, like Scott McClanahan and Sam Pink, and also Willy Vlautin and Elizabeth Ellen and Alissa Nutting and Mary Miller and Noah Cicero, and so on. These hardly even cover the basics of what I enjoy reading. I read a lot of bullshit, too.
What do you read for pleasure?
Besides literature? I like reading books about moviemaking, people f’ing up in Hollywood. I also read professional wrestling autobiographies. I’m a magazine junky as well, and have a love/hate relationship with Entertainment Weekly and Rolling Stone. I also used to read comic books but gave them up because I never hear about any good ones coming out.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I’m still learning this e-book phenomenon. You’ll have to pry actual printed books from my cold dead hands before I entirely succumb to Kindle.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was the first book I read in school that left any impression on me at all. I thought, “This book did not suck.”
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
It was a story about a guy who tries running his girlfriend over in a car.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born on Long Island, New York, but grew up in a trailer park in south Florida. You meet a lot of interesting people living in a trailer park in south Florida, especially when you have to share a bedroom with your grandmother. True story.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I been in bands but I haven’t been doing much of that lately. I basically read, listen to a lot of ’80s hard rock, and troll the internet. I don’t have cable but enjoy keeping up with what’s happening in the world of professional wrestling. I have two very lovely and attentive women in my life: a girlfriend and cat. I also like movies. Mostly stuff from the 1970s. And Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo, of course.
How do you approach cover design?
Like a goddamn man on fire.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I’ve always preferred doing things myself. I’m an OCD perfectionist. I want to be solely responsible when things go wrong, and I usually am. Also, I grew up in the 1990s and listened to punk and hardcore music, which means I had a fanzine or two at some time or other. Self-publishing has stained my blood.
Published 2015-01-02.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Loco Mask II
Price: Free! Words: 2,410. Language: English. Published: June 11, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » Black comedy, Fiction » Sports
Saliva, or Drowning Pool, or something kicked me in the dick through a shitty PA system as a big son-of-a-bitch announced as Loco Mask II—wearing a sequined blue hood with crazy yellow dragons stitched onto the sides—charged through the curtain and down the aisle towards a shoddily built ring. On his way there, an old woman in the crowd lobbed a plastic cup of beer at him.
Cutter
Price: Free! Words: 1,720. Language: English. Published: February 9, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Coming of age
Christopher grips the neck of the now empty beer bottle he took from the party, raises it above his head, smashes it against the sidewalk, and begins dragging the toothed edges across his arms until tiny red droplets appear. Arms bloody, Christopher uses his fingertips to smear shapes into them—circles, stars, sailboats, roads to faraway places, and even a game of solitary tic-tac-toe.
Eulogy for Johnny Thunders
Price: Free! Words: 1,270. Language: English. Published: November 7, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Black comedy
Johnny Thunders is dead. Hit and run. Hadn’t seen my poor, neglected Johnny in months, and here I am burying him. With my bare hands and a shovel I am burying him. In the backyard of the house Phoebe and I had once lived in together, he is being buried.