Interview with Ellen Kesend

What is your writing process?
Pressure. I've written a lot under contract to film studios, cable and network. Deadlines help. Writing groups help when you are held accountable for bringing pages. The beginning of every project is like amassing huge gobs of clay for a giant sculpture that is vaguely in your head. I love prompts. They bring out what's roiling around in your subconscious mind, the things you really want to write about.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
My first story I recall writing was about an electron named Jumpy who has a very hard day getting through all his circuits.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
I don't know that I have five favorite books, but I have books I love whose spell I am under lately. After reading THE GOLDFINCH, I didn't want to start another book because I was afraid I wouldn't like it as well. It was a literary page-turner about 2 very likable and slightly deranged boys-into-men, Dickens on drugs. The next one I read IS probably one of my favorite books, A LITTLE LIFE, by Hanya Yanagihara. Gorgeous prose, but more importantly, the most compassionate book I can remember reading, about four male college friends making their way through life in NYC. One is severely abused, and they all try to take care of him in their own ways. It made me think about how I conduct my own relationships. FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS is very romantic, beautifully written, set in a time period I love--the Spanish Civil War--and makes me cry. And I finally finished Proust's REMEMBRANCE OF THINGS PAST (aka IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME), and I'm mulling that over. It immerses you into a character's development, especially as a writer, from childhood to middle age, and you become engrossed in another time and place. And it's often funny and very biting. Indelible characters! I love GILEAD by Marilynn Robinson. Again, beautiful writing, but in service of important themes and touched by grace.
Published 2016-04-10.
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Books by This Author

The Johnny Moss Room
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 80,270. Language: English. Published: December 30, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Coming of age, Fiction » Women's fiction » General
(5.00 from 3 reviews)
It takes a lot of guts to be Merv Moss's daughter and even more to love him. In this dramedy about the complicated bonds between fathers and daughters,17-year-old budding film genius Lilo Moss struggles to touch the grace and forgiveness that will lead her to come to terms with her outrageous ex-comic dad before it's too late. Set in 1960s New York and Miami, when all the world was changing.