Tag Archives: interview

Interview with Darlene Campos, BHA Contributor

* Well, here’s something new. Back Hair Advocate is getting into the business of interviews. In our first one, we chatted with Darlene Campos, author of “The Operation,” which we posted to our site yesterday. Read it here.




Your story, “The Operation,” takes place on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. What attracted you to writing about the Lakota characters and lifestyle on the reservation?

During my first semester of college in 2009, I had a history professor who was very passionate about the Lakota tribe. He taught us a lot about the Pine Ridge Reservation and since I had never heard of it, I did my own research on the side. Eventually, I fell in love with the reservation and I felt compelled to write a story that took place there. I’ve never been to Pine Ridge but one day I would love to go and visit.

When did the idea for these characters come to you? What were you doing/where were you?

The Thunderclap family came to my mind one night at 3 am. I couldn’t sleep, so I wrote a short story about them as homework for my beginning fiction class. In the story, Jay Eagle (AKA Ate) died from his heart condition, leaving his wife and baby son all alone. My classmates enjoyed the story, but they were pretty pissed about Jay Eagle Thunderclap’s death and told me I was wrong to kill off such a loveable character. I took their advice and kept him alive in a subsequent draft. I also changed the point of view from 3rd person omniscient to Nimo’s point of view. And no, Jay Eagle Thunderclap will never die in the series. I promise.

You have written a number of other stories featuring these characters. Are you putting together a book?

Yes! I’m in the process of putting all the Thunderclap family stories together in one book. I’ve been editing it extensively for the last year, and I plan to start submitting to agents and publishers in a couple of weeks. I hope to write and produce a small television series about them sometime in the future. We’ll see what happens. 

What kind of research did you do to write these stories?

I read tons of fictional stories by Native American authors and loads of books on Lakota history and culture. I also took some college classes on Native American studies. Honestly, I get a lot of heat for writing outside my own culture, and I am frequently told to stick to my own, which drives me nuts.

Then in 2012, I got the opportunity to meet Sherman Alexie, a famous Native American author who wrote “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.” I asked him what he thought about me writing from the point of view of a Lakota boy. He said it ultimately doesn’t matter what you write, all that matters is that your writing is good. He’s right.

Where do you write mostly? Please describe this place.

Even though I write in a variety of places, my favorite place to write is in bed. My most successful story titled “The Fork” was written this way. I fell asleep right after writing the final sentence, and my pen’s ink stained my sheets. Thank goodness for detergent.

What’s a flash fiction you read recently that knocked your socks off?

“Godoy Lives” by Daniel Chacon. It’s a beautifully written story about an impostor. 

What are two writing sites you visit and enjoy?

Aside from Duotrope and Newpages strictly for submission calls, I love Writer’s Relief and Writer’s Digest. They always have good advice on their sites.

What other things you do besides writing?

I like to ride my bike, go to the gym, read books, and spend time with those close to me, especially with my wonderful boyfriend, David.




What movie franchise do you wish would just end already?

Back to the Future should’ve ended after the first one. It’s almost 2015, and we still don’t have hoverboards. We were lied to.

Donut or doughnut?

I live in Houston, and we have Shipley’s Do-Nuts headquarters. Donut is short for Don’t Mess with Texas.

Tell me everything you know about sea otters.

I know otter-ly nothing.

How did you celebrate your publication in Back Hair Advocate? Feel free to lie.

Huge make-out session with David, fireworks, and some Shipley’s Do-Nuts. It totally happened. Or did it?

The last thing you ate?

Trail Mix! Whoever invented it was a genius.

Worst piece of advice you ever got?

When I was fourteen, a relative told me I should stop writing because it’s not a ‘girl’s’ hobby. As you can see, I take advice from my relatives very seriously.

Worst job you ever worked?

Over the last couple of years, I’ve been paid $800 for my stories, which isn’t much. Writing is demanding, difficult, and requires long hours. I hate the process of writing, yet I feel like I’m going to go crazy when I’m not writing. In a perfect world, my stories would earn me enough money to quit my day job and also provide me with a lifetime supply of trail mix.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Brittany Clarke Interview by Alex Bernstein

The Tawny Rumaine Show in progress. TAWNY plays host to BRITTANY CLARKE.

TAWNY: We’re back! So. Brittany. Brittany Clarke!

BRIT: Yes.

TAWNY: This was it. This was the year that Brittany Clarke took a second rate character – Joan Johnson – on a completely forgettable show – Still Married! – and turned her into an icon.

BRIT: Well – it wasn’t just me –

TAWNY: (to audience) Did she not revolutionize television!? Yes! Yes, she did!

BRIT: Thanks. But you know in my new movie, I play a very different –

TAWNY: Now. It was an issue before Joan, yes? But let’s face it – it was T-A-Boo.

BRIT: That’s – that’s right.

TAWNY: Whose idea was it? Who said – let’s give Joan Johnson anal warts?

BRIT: It –

TAWNY: Was that an idea?! Who said – let’s make an entire year of plot revolve around Joan’s anal warts!?

BRIT: Not me –


BRIT: Well, the show’s a team effort. The producer, Al Tandy. The writers, Jason, Phoebe and –

TAWNY: Your husband –

BRIT: Ex –

TAWNY: Ex-husband – Mandy Notrob! Wow! He could see the impact warts would have on the American mind! How did he know? What made him think – Britty and warts?

BRIT: Well, we were fighting, actually.

TAWNY: Yes, you were!

BRIT: I’d become friends with –

TAWNY: Jerry Davici! Who wouldn’t cheat on their husbands with Jerry Davici? I would!

BRIT: Yes, well, of course, Mandy found out. And the next day, Joan –

TAWNY: – had anal warts!

BRIT: Right.

TAWNY: Wow! So, you think he knew? That you and Joan and Still Married! would explode?! So to speak?

BRIT: Yes. I think that was his plan, actually. Hey – I brought a clip of my new –

TAWNY: Zwerdansk – a major pharmaceutical – asks Brittany to become spokesperson for their new product Anal Wart Away. But Britty says no!

BRIT: Well –

TAWNY: Millions of anal wart sufferers – women mostly – are now looking to you as a role model. Doesn’t it make sense, then –

BRIT: Okay. Okay. Look. Let me just say, the last year of Still Married! was one of the most exciting, challenging years of my life. And I can’t tell you how moved I was by all the love and support from my fans. But – and I want to be clear about this – I do not have anal warts. I’m a thin, healthy, Hollywood actress – who makes a living playing a tired, bitchy, mid-western housewife –

TAWNY: – with anal warts.

BRIT: Had! Had anal warts! We took care of it! Remember?!

TAWNY: Of course! We were there with you all the way, girl! Doctor’s visits, wart inspections, scrapings and burnings, your four-episode, thirty-six-hour surgery!

BRIT: And Joan’s free and clear, now! Just like me!

TAWNY: Now – you’ve just won your first Emmy – what a dress!

BRIT: I did.

TAWNY: What a dress! Versace?

BRIT: Yes.

TAWNY: I noticed, in your acceptance speech…you didn’t mention warts –

BRIT: Look –

TAWNY: (to audience) Questions for Britty?!

FRUMPY WOMAN: Brittany, I’ve had anal warts for thirty years. But because of you, I’m not embarrassed anymore. Honey! Kids! It wasn’t back trouble! It was warts! Big ones! With hair! Just like Brittany!

TAWNY: Such an inspiration you’ve been!

BRIT: Okay. Look – I know – each and every one of you has anal warts. I know you’re proud of me and you all want to share. But I don’t have warts! Or moles! Or boils! Or fungusy patches! Nothing! I have a perfect, perfectly healthy anus!!! And if I did have anal warts, I’d be so disgusted with myself I’d probably blow my brains out!

TAWNY: Alright! Let’s talk about that new movie!

BRIT: New movie? Right! Yes. Right.

TAWNY: Baste and Murder!

BRIT: Yes!

TAWNY: Which opens today in theatres across the country –

BRIT: That’s – that’s right.

TAWNY: You play tough, leggy detective – Maggie Anjowski –

BRIT: Yes. Right – a detective –

TAWNY: – with anal warts?


TAWNY: Did they get you special chairs – ?


TAWNY: – with fluffy cushions?

BRIT:   No! No! Look! Look! Wait – !

BRIT stands, starts trying to remove her pants. TAWNY grabs her. They struggle.

TAWNY: And that’s all the time we have! We’ll see you tomorrow on Tawny Rumaine!


Alex Bernstein is a freelance writer in New Jersey. His work has appeared at Corvus, BluePrintReview, Hobo Pancakes, Gi60, The Rumpus, The Legendary, The Big Jewel, MonkeyBicycle, Yankee Pot RoastSwink, and PopImage, among others.  His first collection, “Miserable Holiday Stories,” is available at Amazon.com.  Please visit him at www.promonmars.com.


Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,