Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Writer Profile: Alan Goldsher

Our regular look at the amazing writers we know.

One of the most flexible, diverse writers on the publishing landscape, Alan Goldsher is at home in any genre, in any style. Whether it's a horror novel, a romantic comedy, a comedic memoir, or a poignant autobiography, Alan can bring any book project to life. He is the author of the acclaimed remix novel Paul Is Undead: The British Zombie Invasion, as well as several forthcoming titles (four lined up for 2012!), including Give Death a Chance: The British Zombie Invasion 2, My Favorite Fangs: The Story of the von Trapp Family VampiresHow I Slept My Way to the Middle: Stories and Secrets from the Stage, the Screen, and the Interwebs (in collaboration with comedian/actor Kevin Pollak), and Miles Davis FAQ. He has written nine other books, including Hard Bop Academy: The Sidemen of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Midnight Movie (with director Tobe Hooper), Modest Mouse: A Pretty Good ReadThe True Naomi Story, and No Ordinary Girl. As a ghostwriter, Alan has collaborated on projects with dozens of notable celebrities and public figures. Prior to taking the writing world by storm, Alan spent 10+ years as a professional bassist, during which time he recorded with Janet Jackson, Cypress Hill, and Naughty by Nature; toured the world with Digable Planets; and performed at the 1994 Grammy Awards.

GG: What led you to become a ghostwriter?
AG: I'm a storyteller, and if I can help a non-writer tell their story—be it a memoir, a novel, some narrative non-fiction, whatever—that's a beautiful thing. Also, there's something to be said for writing as part of a team. Writing is a solitary profession (fiction, especially), so being part of a group-think is a nice change of pace.

What's the most unusual writing project you've done?
I can only pick one? Hmm. I helped a Haitian doctor write his memoir, but he wouldn't tell his full story because he was afraid that Papa Doc's family might track him down and murder him. He was a lovely man, but a little nervous. And then there was the angry, angry stand-up comic who... Well, we'll go over that one another time.

What's the most difficult part of being a full-time writer?
I like to juggle multiple projects, and sometimes folks don't get that. Often, a publishing industry type will ask me, "Are you really taking on another book?" I like to have several thing on my plate, and convincing the world at large that I can handle it, and handle it well (I think) can be frustrating. But it generally works out in the end, so it's all good. (Oh, and getting paid on a timely basis can be a pain in the pooper.)

What kinds of books do you like to read?
I'm all over the map, but if you had to pick a common thread, I guess you'd have to say I'm a pop-culture dude. Hip memoirs, sports books, film books, cool fiction, horror, that sort of thing.

Where can I find out more about you?
On my websiteFacebook, or Twitter.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Is "pain in the pooper" supposed to reflect Mr. Goldsher's talent?