Interview With Brandon Jones on Writing

983

Interview Package

1. Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Brandon C. Jones.

I’m named after my father…well, chronologically.

If I was literally named after my father, my name would be “Alleged, Jr.”

I wrote a couple books, for the younger kids, a book is like an Amish Blog.

First one was called, “Amphigory Almanac.”

Or, as anyone who bought a copy pronounces it, “Screw Me Outa $12.”

2. Why writing?

In college I majored in English with a focus in creative writing because I always wanted to be…homeless.

I have a cardboard sign that says, “Will correct grammar for food.”

Strangers on the sidewalk pass me and sometimes ask, “Ain’t got no food?”

“You mean, I don’t have any food.”

“Correct. Here’s a sandwich.”

That’s why I developed a fawning fixation and fascination with words and writing…free sandwiches.

3. What is your earliest memory of wanting to be an writer?

When did I decide to become a writer?

No one decides to become a writer.

No one decides to have a life plan shakier than a drawing of a magic 8 ball and snow globe being erased from an etcha-sketch.

No one decides to have an income that’s less stable than a Jenga Tower with an inner ear infection during a level 5 earthquake.

No one decides to be responsible for more unread pages than an on call doctor with their beeper on silent.

writers need a pen
Writers need a pen.

It’s not a decision, it’s not a choice, It’s insanity.

Like Casey Anthony opening a day care centre, kinda insanity.

Like Stevie Wonder parallel parking a bumper car, kinda insanity.

Like Micheal J Foxx thinking his Ouija Board is possessed by a spirit that’s bad at spelling, kinda insanity.

Like Edward Scissor Hands and Captain Hook trying to communicate using sign language, kinda insanity.

Like a color blind person trying to solve the Rubik’s Cube, kinda insanity.

Hey, look, alright…Let’s face it, being a writer is like making a decision and more like having a sickness.

It’s a disease and truth be told, it’s disease with no cure, okay?

It seems the closest thing to treatment is filling the blank page with ink and words.

Bottom Line:

Writers need their pen the way diabetics need their insulin.

4. What are your favorite subject(s) and style(s)?

I don’t care about any one subject which is so sad I like to think I put the word pathetic in apathetic.

All I care about is being funny.

I never ask if a joke is offensive, controversial, or taboo.

I only ask if a joke is funny.

I would never do a joke about abortion because it’s a hot button topic, I would only do it because a joke about abortion brings out the little kid in all of us.

The average writer would laugh if they witnessed a stranger getting hit by a truck, I’m the kind of writer that would only laugh if I was driving the truck, so be glad I’m behind a type writer and not a steering wheel.

5. How do you work and approach your subject?

Mark Twain said comedy is like a frog:

If you dissect it, you’ll understand it better, but it ultimately dies.

I try not to extrapolate the creative process, it’s like splitting the atom, you can only break it down so much.

Hemingway said the quickest answer is always just doing the damn thing.

So I pick up a pen and don’t put it down until the blank page has vanished like my chances of fame.

There’s no formula writing a good book, but the formula to writing a bad one is trying to please everyone, I’m the only audience I pander to.

6. What are your favorite written works, writers?

I began writing for myself as a stand up comedian, so I was writing jokes for the stage before writing jokes for the page, they were originally said before read, told before sold.

This acted as the midwife to the birth of my writing career.

Subsequently, joke writers were my Rosetta Stone while translating the encrypted language of writing.

Steven Wright and Mitch Hedberg were the only ones who made me laugh.

Their jokes are abstract concepts, they’re surreal like a Salvador Dali painting.

Woody Allen’s early collection of treatises were erudite, esoteric, and excellent.

They showed me you could be smart and silly, it didn’t have to be separated like church and state, you didn’t have to aim for the lowest common denominator like a super bowl commercial, you could be an elitist, you didn’t have to lower the bar like in limbo but raise the bar like in pole vaulting.

I try to always strive for originality when I write.

But when I steal, I steal from the best because to steal from one, that’s plagiarism, but to steal from many, that’s research, I stole that line.

7. What are the best responses you have had to your work?

Good news/bad news:

Bad news…

After reading my book, one person said it was the first paper weight made of more paper.

Good news…

I was glad my mom actually read it.

I kid, I kid.

She didn’t read it.

But she did say that, loudly, then posted it on Amazon…in bold font…all caps.

That was her actual review of my book.

But it wasn’t the only one.

I also got bad reviews.

And, I once wrote a joke about Crest toothpaste.

3 out of 4 dentists agreed it was hilarious.

8. What do you like about your work?

What I like about my work is it’s something I would read, which is good because few others read it.

I amalgamate attributes merited by two my favorite authors into one piece:

The ebulliently subtle yet exuberantly celebrated elegant descriptions brilliantly infested by eloquent commentary of F. Scott Fitzgerald.

And, the signature joke structure and styling a of Dennis Miller minus the profuse proliferation of profanity.

9. What advice would you give to other writers?

Don’t ask me to read your work cuz I’ll hate it.

If it’s bad, I’ll hate it cuz I hate bad writing.

And, if it’s good, I’ll be jealous and hate it even more.

10. Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?

In 5 years, I’ll be celebrating the 5th anniversary of bombing this interview.

I’m finally having commercial success as a writer.

It’s taken me 30 years to become an overnight success.

Now, I’m blowing up like an Acme Fire Cracker strapped to the back of rocket skating coyote.

But, it won’t last long, like an iPhone battery, soon my success will be found in photographs printed on the back of an expired milk carton.

Brandon Craig Jones writes and performs stand-up comedy and is a musician and entertainment writer.