Before y’all skip down to the actual interview, I wanted to say that the last few months of running The Daily Drunk have been amazing. There’s no doubt in my mind that we have the best drunken community on the Internet. With that being said, I’m always thinking of ways to grow the site. After a few drinks, I came up with the idea to do something called Drunkerviews.
What the hell is a Drunkerview? Well, it’s the totally original idea of combining drunk+interview together, duh. Besides that? Drunkerviews are a space for us to shoot the breeze with other writers. Think of these Drunkerviews as a night out on the town with a buddy at your favorite dive bar.
Our first Drunkerview is none other than Stephen J. Golds. Stephen is a badass whose words will knock your socks off. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. When you’re done, go and read Stephen’s latest poems that we’re just published here.
1. What’s your writing process like?
My writing process is pretty basic, maybe. For fiction, I get an idea, make it into a movie in my head. Scene for scene (maybe that sounds crazy) and then after a few days or weeks of obsessionally thinking about it I’ll write it down in one sitting and spend weeks or months editing it until I get a good enough story and flow.
Poetry is more of a one-shot thing. It’s a lot more personal so I just write down my feelings at the time. For me, poetry is similar to taking a Polaroid. All about capturing that moment, memory or thought. That’s just me, though. I don’t know how anyone else writes. I know some very talented poets who spend a long time on a poem and it really shows in their finished product. I’d like to be like that. But most of my poetry is stuff I’ve written in the spur of the moment and it’s done.
2. Hit me with your favorite books!
Damn, that’s a hard question. Here’s some:
- Ham on Rye – Charles Bukowski
- The Things They Carried – Tim O’Brien
- The Getaway – Jim Thompson
- One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Ken Kesey
All these books really changed my life. Especially Ham on Rye because as a teenager I could really relate to Hank.
3. Everyone has a literary crush. Got any you’d like to shout-out?
Sylvia Plath, Hildegard Knef and Sarah Kane. All beautiful and brutally honest women. I have a poem dedicated to Sarah Kane coming out September 4th at Live Nude Poems. If you haven’t read any of her work please check it out. She really put everything she had into her writing.
4. You can only have one alcoholic beverage for the rest of your life. Go.
Damn, that’s another difficult one. One for the rest of my life… probably a High Ball. Good for any occasion and the hangovers aren’t so ruthless.
5. Do you like living in Japan? I’ve always wanted to visit.
After nearly 14 years it has a lot of negative aspects that I’ve noticed over time but I still love it. It’s my home now. Great country to visit. I recommend Okinawa. The best place in Japan.
6. I was stoked to see that you’re now a regular contributor to Versification. You have a real talent for writing these gritty micropoems. How the hell do you do it?
Haha, I honestly don’t know. I write a lot of poetry so maybe it’s a case of shooting enough bullets that something hits the target eventually. I really appreciate Versification and what they’re doing. We need a lot more honest, brutal poetry. I’m sick of reading about green hills and the way the wind moves through the meadow. I want to read something with real fucking heart and real fucking soul. Versification satisfies me there.
I will become a poetry editor myself in the next few months so watch this space. I’ll be putting a call out for submissions soon.
7. Who would win in a fight? The Hulk or John Wick?
Never been a fan of The Hulk. So I’d be inclined to go with John Wick. Out-strengthened but never outgunned. The only way to be.
8. You have a couple of novels and a collection of poems coming out. Tell me about ‘em.
I have a novel coming out in October from Red Dog Press – Say Goodbye When I’m Gone – about an aging, haunted Jewish criminal and a teenage Japanese runaway whose lives interweave in Hawaii in the 1960s and they give each other a chance at redemption.
Another novel coming out in January is Glamour Girl Gone, a fictionalization of the disappearance of Jean Spangler in 1949, released by Close to the Bone. It’s based in Okinawa and L.A and the main protagonist is a dislikable killer with TB. I’ve been fascinated by the case of Jean Spangler for over a decade and loved all the research I did for the novel.
And in May, I have a collection of short stories and poetry titled Love Like Bleeding Out with an Empty Gun in Your Hand – again released by Close to the Bone.
9. Got a drunk story for us?
Oh man, I have too many. Enough to fill a trilogy of books. Some would be considered humorous and others horror. A lot of good memories but a lot of things I wish like hell I could forget too lol.
If you’re ever in Japan let me know and we’ll paint the place RED!
Stephen J. Golds was born in the U.K, but has lived in Japan for most of his adult life. He enjoys spending time with his daughters, reading books, traveling, boxing and listening to old Soul LPs. Glamour Girl Gone, his debut novel, will be released by Close to The Bone Press on January 29th, 2021. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGone58.
Shawn Berman (@sbb_writer) runs The Daily Drunk. He enjoys the occasional cold beer.