Name: Eric Nelson Manley Shelman
Age: 31 years old
Where are you from?
As a kid I moved and lived all over Texas, North Hill Ridge, Keller, Fort Worth, Cumby, Yantis, Princeton, Mineola, and Quitman, Texas. I now live in Winnsboro, Texas.
A little about yourself i.e. your education, family, life, etc…
I went to schools all over Texas, however, I graduated at Quitman High School, back in 2004. Shortly after graduating I joined the Navy, and served four years in Norfolk, Virginia. While my tine in the Navy, I sailed and swam the seven seas. I have traveled to 28 countries. After, the Navy, I lived with my blood sister, her husband, and her kids for about a year and a half all together. Then, I moved to Tyler, Texas, and attended Tyler Junior College, for two years, majoring in Journalism, and English, however, I didn’t receive any degree from my attending because I was too focused so many distractions, such as, sex, alcohol, drugs, poetry, reading and writing all sorts of things, not studying for exams, etcetera. After I dropped out of college, I went back to working construction, and plumbing for two years. I met my ex-wife, and moved back to East Texas, she got me a roofing there. Eventually, we got married, however, it didn’t work out. We fell out of love, and lost, and she cheated on me as well. I have two sisters, and four brothers. I, was adopted by my stepdad, whenever I was two years old. I have ten nieces, and nephews all together. I was born on October 31, 1985, at 9:30 pm, and my mom was, and still is so superstitious that she tried to hold me in her womb until midnight, because she thought I was going to be the Devil’s baby. I am divorced with no kids. I am working construction again.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I am currently trying my hand at writing trying short stories instead of poetry, for a little while. I am currently retyping, editing, and revising my first, second, third, fourth, and fifth books, and hopefully, they will be available for purchase sometime soon.
Fiona: When, and why did you begin writing?
I began writing back in 1999, when I was attending eighth grade. I started writing shortly after reading The Raven, by Edgar Allan Poe, in my English class. I fell in love with the imagination, imagery, beauty, darkness, psychological horror of it. After reading it, I knew that I, forever, wanted to be a writer, and a poet. From that day on I started writing short stories, two novels, that weren’t ever published because I lost them, and poetry.
Fiona: When did you consider yourself a writer?
I, first considered myself, a writer, and poet back in eighth grade, which was in 1999!
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I was reading Edward Lear’s Nonsense Alphabet poems, Dr. Seuss’s ABCs, Chaucer’s An ABC, and I read this alphabet poem on a website called Poetrysoup.com. Anyways, I was inspired to write my first poetry book, Diversify and Enlighten Your Alphabet, which consisted of over one hundred alphabet poems, however, I read arranged them so that each line has two or three words chronologically ordered by following the alphabet forward, and backwards. Here are two examples of my alphabet poems from my first book, Diversify and Enlighten Your Alphabet:
Anarchists bastardized Capitalist
deteriorating enormous fiscals’
growths horrendously incisively
jeering kitsch loathing
money narrating oppressions
populace resurrecting simplicity
through uniting variety
with xenial yearning
Aztecs banged Cortez
denouncing empiricism frantically
gruesomely hanging incandescent
jars knotting Lot’s
mighty nights’ openly
penetrating quandaries restlessly
systematically tearing unique
vulvas, warriors, xylophones
Fiona: Do you have a specific style?
My styles vary because, I am a unique, and authentic poet, and writer. I believe in experimenting when writing poetry, and prose. I have written all sorts of styles, such as, acrostics, double acrostics, diamantes, haikus, free verse, stream of consciousness, quatrains, nonsense, palindromes, English Shakespearean Sonnets, alphabet, poetic prose, etc…
Fiona: How did you come up with title?
When I began writing Diversify and Enlighten Your Alphabet, I came up with the title, because it has alphabet poetry, and each one are a puzzle poem, where the reader has to figure out what I am alluding to.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
It was written for the intellectuals of this world. It is hard for most to comprehend it. Most people say that it needs to come with a disclaimer, that should say have you dictionary, and thesaurus, at the ready in order, to look up the big words, I used inside it.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic, and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
My first book is completely fictitious, and has no basis of real life, however, I make fun of everything in it.
Fiona: What books have influenced your life most? A mentor?
Tao Te Jing by Lao Tzu
The Alchemist, by Paulo
The Seagull, by Anton Chekov
Enemy of the People, by Henrik Ibsen
Mexico City Blues, Jack Kerouac
Collected Works, by Allen Ginsberg
Selected Works, by T. S. Elliot
The Raven especially, and all of Edgar Allan Poe’s works
Duino Elegies, and Sonnets to Orpheus, by Rainer Maria Rilke
The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Kubla Khan, or Vision in A Dream: A Fragment, by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Selected Works of Alexander Pope
Selected Works of John Donne
The Rubaiyat, by Omar Khayyam
Shel Silverstein’s books
Edward Lear’s Book of Nonsense
Mother Goose Fairy Tales
My mentors were dead way before I was born.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interests, and who is your favorite author, and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Yes indeed, there are plenty of them. I have several favorite authors, however, I will list a few.
Rich Orth, he writes almost exactly like Edgar Allan Poe, his imagery is life, his rhythm, and rhyme are truly perfect.
Jerry Langdon, is a dark, Gothic, and horror poet, he is truly amazing with his imagination, his flow, beautifully demented poetry.
David L Tamarin, he writes extreme serial horror novels, and they read as if you are the character instead of the reader. He is extremely witty, and uses lots of irony as well.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members?
My great friend, Phillip McDonald, a friend I met while serving in the United States of America’s Navy, we actually served together. He supported, and still supports me with my writing, and even thoroughly convinced me that if I learned form that poetry had the potential to be better. Once I learned forms my poetry was and still is so much better, than when I first began to write.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Yes, I do! Unfortunately, for me, I haven’t been able to make enough money off of my books, in order to become a full-time author, and poet, however, it would be nice to do what I love for a living, instead of having to work all the time, and write, and read whenever, I can.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Yes, I am currently, retyping, editing, and revising all of my books including my fifth one.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
My mother read Christian Mother Goose Fairy Tales, Shel Silverstein’s books, Dr. Seuss’ books, amongst other children books, and I loved to be read to as a children. Anyways, whenever, I started reading books, on my own, I read each of these aforementioned, and so many more. However, my writing interest originated after reading The Raven, by Edgar Allan Poe, back in eighth grade, in 1999.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Everyone lied down to enjoy a blissful night’s sleep, being comfortable with their peaceful thoughts, and lives.
The crimson tides battered, stained sandy seashores carrying decayed suicide victims corpses, worldwide. It rained acid, blood, ash, fire, meteorites, asteroids, solar flares, locusts, grasshoppers, crickets, frogs, and snakes, and destroyed its victims. Tectonic plates shifted, horrifically, and caused fault lines, levies, dams, worldwide to falter, and creating terrific highest scaled earthquakes, monsoons, tsunamis, hurricanes, tropical storms, broke up, and sunk glaciers, turned every mass of water into deserts, wastelands, and drought-struck earth. Chaos, mayhem, and disorder merged together as one huge destructive force, and helped wipe out anything, and everything still lingering on Earth. Temperatures drastically raised, and lowered. Volcanoes, erupted, smothering whatever, and whomever were in their paths. Blistering, piercing, wailing winds burnt, then froze victims. Sinkholes, sank everything in their wake, and exposed its victims to the elements harshness. Death, entropy, and decay kissed everything, which stench was unbearable to every living and nonliving thing. It was so bad that most every living thing couldn’t even breathe, let alone move, and escape this horrendous real life nightmare. Everything, and everyone preceded down a destructive course for survival.
Everyone woke up from this horrendous nightmare, perspiring in sweat, shaken from shock, doused in their own urine, and defecation. Eyes streaked with tears of terrific panic, and exhaustion. They all cleansed themselves in a hot shower trying to awaken their senses of peace. As they scurried about, their mundane lives, which led into days, months, and years, flying by, and everyone had convinced themselves that their nightmares, were nothing more than mind games of their unconsciousness. Everyone forgot all about it, and moved on as if nothing ever happened.
Each person pretended not to be completely scared motionlessly. Everyone prayed to their own deities and there were those who didn’t pray at all, however, they wished that, they did believe in some supernatural being that could help them interpret, and cope with this nightmare. No one knew why they had these nightmares, as they conversed with one another their understanding was no more.
Some came up with ideas that it was a sign from their higher power. Others, just shrugged it off as a bad night’s rest. Still a few could not reasonably, nor logically rationalize this mishap, instead they blocked it from their minds, and pretended not to be effected by it.
Everyone carried on living their antlike lives, of clockwork. Each one fulfilling their roles as peasants, serfs, kings, queens, and everyone in between.
Out of nowhere, the premonition was correct, and the nightmare unleashed its unmerciful wrath of end times.
Everything migrated as fast as they could, by running, swimming, driving vehicles, flying, crawling, slithering, climbing to higher ground, et cetera. Everyone screamed hoarsely in utter distraught, while trying to escape this premonition of the apocalyptic end. Everything, and everyone became nonexistent by Nature’s forces of destruction. Nature, had finally won its long, and much awaited war of eradicating Mankind’s existence.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Yes the beginning and sometimes the middle as well.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Nope, not at all. Unfortunately, for me, my books are off the market, and when they were I didn’t have the time, nor the money to travel for them.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My first publisher designed my covers for my first book, Diversify and Enlighten Your Alphabet, my second publisher designed the covers for my second, and third books, Nuances of Nonsenses, and Master of Versification’s Diversifications, my great friend Jerry Langdon, did the covers for my fourth, and fifth books.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The beginning stages are always the hardest for me.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book, and what was it?
It is rather hard and rather time consuming, and tedious in order, to write a book. I also that it sucks whenever, you work two jobs, and write five poems a day, at midnight. I also learned that being self published takes a lot of time, effort, and money, because I had to buy, sell, promote, distribute, and market my books with anyone to help guide me through it, and no networking either. Not to use big words because most people don’t know what they are, and can’t comprehend them.
Fiona: If any of your books were turned into a film would you like to play the lead?
I haven’t though this through yet. Not for certain yet.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
There are two ways to write a novel, you may either, write an outline, with a summary paragraph with each chapter, or you may be a little risky, and more adventurous by writing your novel as you go, without any planning minus the plot, setting, and time. Be ready to torn pieces, and adored as writing whenever you publish your books. Everyone is either going to love, or hate what you write according to their personal opinions. Write what you the world to read, not what everyone else wants you to read.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
The Great Book of Amber, The Complete Chronicles, 1-10, All the Novels of the Fantasy Saga. Complete in one volume, Roger Zelazny.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Dr. Seuss books, Shel Silverstein books, and Where The Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Lots of things make me laugh, and cry. It truly depends what mood I am in.
Fiona: Is there one person past, or present that would meet, and why?
Edgar Allan Poe, especially because he inspired me to start writing, after reading , the Raven, and a few other short stories of his as well.
Fiona: What do you want written on your headstone, and why?
Nihilism is a beautiful and depressing thing sometimes! Because I am a nihilist, it is wonderful at times, and horrendous at other times.
Fiona: Other than writing, do you have any hobbies?
Yes I do have other hobbies. Reading, researching, and studying religions, philosophies, mythologies, folktales, and fairytales. Writing reviews for each book I buy and read for living authors. I make hemp necklaces, and bracelets. I am a horror movie, and book reader fanatic.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Law & Order
Law & Order Criminal Intent
Law & Order Special Victims Unit
Ash VS Evil Dead
Clive Barker’s Book of Blood, Midnight Meat Train
Everything Tim Burton
And a few others as well.
Fiona: Favorite foods/colors/music?
My favorite foods are spaghetti
I listen all sorts of music, however, only certain country singers. Everything is mainly all sorts of rock and roll, industrial
Gothic industrial rock
Select rap groups,
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
Been an Archeologist, Astronaut, Historian, Park Ranger, Game Warden, and so many other things.
Fiona: Do you have a blog, or a website? If so, what is it?
Nope not yet. But I might have one in the future.