Interview with Neal Ross Attinson

Published 2022-07-14.
What's the story behind your Prosatio Silban books?
Through a combination of circumstances, I became a rabbinical assistant. Later, I also became an amateur of cooking. It is said that you can only write what you know, so after sixteen years of one-hour-daily work, I had accumulated enough short stories for a volume the size of Mark Twain's "Life on the Mississippi." (And another one the size of "The Martian Chronicles.")
And "Pithyisms?"
I've long been a fan of aphorisms, epigrams, and the little-t truths of so-called "wisdom literature," and have been blogging proverb-bombs of my own since mid-2011. One morning, the thought occurred that I could assemble these one- and two-liner blog posts into a free e-book. So I did.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The sheer act of applied creativity; of adding to the material substance of the Universe. From chaotic first draft, through editing and polishing, to eventual completion -- writing is my drug of choice.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The conventional wisdom is that short-story collections can only contain stories that have already been published elsewhere. Following that line, I did get some very nice (and very helpful!) rejection notices -- but when a friend suggested Smashwords, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to both build my skill set and achieve a lifelong dream.
How has Smashwords contributed to your writing?
By providing an outlet for my work that I would not have had otherwise, and one for which I could not be more grateful.
Who are your literary exemplars?
H.P. Lovecraft and J.A. Brillat-Savarin are the direct inspirations for the Prosatio Silban tales, as are Miguel de Cervantes and David Hargrave. Some other favorites/influences include Jack Vance, Ray Bradbury, Larry Niven, Clark Ashton Smith, Tamar Adler, Ruth Reichl, and Anthony Bourdain. And let's not forget Robert Anton Wilson, Jay Michaelson, and Ivan Stang!
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Enthusiastic curiosity and the urge to be useful.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Thinking about writing. Studying ancient texts. Skywatching, directly or indirectly. Strolling the streets of my hometown. Thinking about writing. Autodidactics. Puttering in the kitchen. Armchair travel. Recreational musing. Collecting experiences. And, of course, thinking about writing.
What do you want readers to say when they finish reading your books?
"Well. That was a pleasant [timespan]. Thank you for entertaining me!"
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author or publisher.

Books by This Author

The Cook For Any Price: More Commonwell Tales
Price: Free! Words: 67,840. Language: English. Published: April 26, 2022. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
It’s back to the Exilic Lands for our dauntless and resourceful holyman-turned-chef, where he seeks rewards both profitable and profound in a world unlike any you’ve ever visited.
The Cook For Any Price: Across the Rimless Sea
Price: Free! Words: 123,690. Language: English. Published: June 1, 2021. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
(5.00 from 1 review)
A self-defrocked holyman wanders a fantastic landscape, eking out a meager but honest living as a mercenary cook.
Price: Free! Words: 1,690. Language: English. Published: May 21, 2021. Categories: Nonfiction » Philosophy » Essays, Essay » Literature
One man's humble contribution to the world's collection of wisdom literature.