ABP- Thank you for taking this interview today, Shawn. This past summer, ABP had the privilege of publishing “At The Movies: A humorous collection of cinema-inspired essays” a book where you brilliantly lampooned Hollywood productions from JAWS to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and a lot of things in-between. What gave you the idea to write this book? Were all of the individual essays written over time and then later compiled for this collection, or did you write them together with the intent of creating this gem?
SB- Thanks for having me, Red. I have always had a passion for movies. I love watching and talking about them just as much. Most of the essays were done over a few months. It’s funny: I never thought about writing a collection of movies essays–it sorta happened naturally. One day I looked at a drive on my computer with all my files and noticed I had a handful of similar movie essays. I thought to myself, “there’s something here,” and decided to keep working on what came to be the manuscript.
ABP- While we are talking about your books, Why don’t you tell us about Mr. Funnyman?
SB- Similar to At the Movies, Mr. Funnyman is a collection of pop culture inspired poetry. That released a few months ago with The Daily Drunk. That was a blast to write. I tried to infuse a lot of the same humor into that collection. It’s poetry in the sense that there are some line breaks. But, at the end of the day, I always say that it’s a collection of stand-up acts I wish I could perform on stage.
ABP- As a comedy writer, do you draw more inspiration from comedians, or more classical writers? One of my favorite writers in George Carlin was primarily a stand-up comedian. Who is your favorite comedian, and who is your favorite non comedic writer?
SB- I definitely draw more inspiration from comedians, especially Adam Sandler, Demitri Martin, Chris Rock, Larry David, and Bo Burnham. If I had to pick a favorite comedian, it would probably be Adam Sandler. His comedy is so genuine and heartfelt and it has gotten me through a lot of times. The Sandman is comedic comfort food for me. Stephen King would probably be my favorite non-comedic writer. His work effort is incredible.
ABP- I often ask the artists of the month what the art/lit scene is like in their area. Being in New York City, you are practically in one of the best places for a creative to find success. If you haven’t already, I suggest reading some of your poetry at the Nuyorican Poets Café down on the lower-east side. Have you gone to or participated in any live readings in the big city? Do you have any NYC art/lit stories to share?
SB- Being in NYC is so inspiring and I’m glad more venues are starting to open back up. Over the Summer, I put on a reading with The Daily Drunk over at Greenpoint Beer in Brooklyn. It was such an awesome experience. We had like 10+ writers there all having a great time. The stage was on the roof and the beer was flowing freely. The crowd was awesome, too. I’m hoping that I can put another event on like that soon.
ABP- Can you share one of your poems or essays with us here?
SB- Here’s a poem from Mr. Funnyman, published originally at Sledgehammer Lit.
HELL YEAH I CRY DURING MOVIES WHAT DO YOU THINK I AM SOME KINDA PSYCHOPATH WHO CAN’T EXHIBIT ANY SORTA EMOTION THINK AGAIN BUCK-O
most recently this happened when i stumbled upon
on comedy central
and the sandman drained a 30 foot putt to win his dearest grandmother’s house back
stopping that evil shithead shooter mcgavin from donning the infamous green jacket.
i don’t know if i had too much to drink that night
if i accidentally ate too many chicken fajitas from chili’s
but i just could not keep it together for the life of me
during that scene
and the tears
quickly filled my entire apartment
in a matter of seconds.
i haven’t been that sad since the day
i wasn’t the partner you wanted to build a future with
all because i’m not textbook manly enough
and accidentally change light bulbs while the lights are still on.
dang, that one stung to hear.
ABP- Thanks again for taking this interview Shawn. If there is anything else that you would like to share, announce, or promote, please do.,
SB- Thanks again for having me! Follow me on Twitter @sbb_writer and follow my magazine/press The Daily Drunk @dailydrunkmag.