ALEX DIFRANCESCO is a multi-genre writer who has published work in Tin House, The Washington Post, Pacific Standard, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The New Ohio Review, Brevity and more. In 2019, they published their essay collection Psychopomps (Civil Coping Mechanisms Press) and their novel All City (Seven Stories Press), which was a finalist for the Ohioana Book Awards. Their short story collection Transmutation (Seven Stories Press) is forthcoming in 2021. They are the recipient of grants and fellowships from PEN America and Sundress Academy for the Arts, and serve as an assistant editor at Sundress Publications.
My current favorite book is: …I’ve revived my love of super trashy middle grade lore, legend, and ghost story books. I’m mining the shit out of them for speculative fiction, and I’m not even a little bit sorry. I loved them as a kid, and I convinced myself to love things that bored me for a long time because they seemed “literary.” Gimme the trash. I want the trash.
My current favorite film is: …I revisited a comfort watch of mine this year that was my favorite film when I was in my early 20s. As I sat there watching Tom Waits’s character Zack in Down By Law tell his girlfriend who was leaving him that he’d never jerked anybody off in his life ever and she knew it, then tried to rescue his really fucking amazing shoes she was about to throw out the window, I became dumbstruck by the fact that this movie had seeped into my soul so fucking much that I’ve played that exact scene out multiple times in my own life.
My current favorite television show is: Haunting of Hill House—fucked. me. up. Nell and Luke, man. Childhood gaslighting is the scariest thing about that show.
My current favorite band is: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. I have two NCatBS-related tattoos. I listen to them every fucking day. That stupid Spotify AI called me the fuck out on it, and I’m not at all ashamed.
My current state of mind is: hopeful and content, which is a wild ride for me. I’ve been depressed for like two decades.
My current chemical romance involves: …just got sober a month ago, actually. I had a bad relapse about a year and a half ago, and it hasn’t gotten better. Tried to OD several times in August of last year, failed, and then decided I was going to live, and so I probably should start making decisions towards that instead of death. Sorry, I got dark there. But it’s a lot better now.
My current favorite word is: …I’m obsessed with the word “facile,” though really I never say it because I think I’d mispronounce it. I gotta go listen to one of those websites that sounds words out for you.
My current mode of transportation is: a pink Vespa, because I’m very secure in my masculinity.
My current favorite fast food item is: …I went 90% vegan lately but I am tempted so hardcore so often by shitty beef tacos from Taco Bell.
My current workout routine consists of: yoga, when I feel like it. Walking around Cleveland to buy cigarettes. I’m old enough that I can’t laugh it off when my doctor tells me I need to exercise three times a week.
My current regrettable decision involves: …really, me tearing it up these days means I drink too much coffee and smoke too many cigarettes before breakfast.
My current hopes and dreams are: a good, well-adjusted life. It’s a scary thought. But my Peter Pan days are in short supply, and I gotta try it.
My current hobbies include: knitting, tarot, Vespa rides, crafting, listening to scary podcasts.
Alex DiFrancesco is online at alexdifrancesco.com.
Brian Alan Ellis runs House of Vlad Press, and is the author of several books, including Sad Laughter (Civil Coping Mechanisms, 2018). His writing has appeared at Juked, Hobart, Fanzine, Monkeybicycle, Electric Literature, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, Funhouse, Heavy Feather Review, and Yes Poetry, among other places. He lives in Florida.
Photo: Christina Ramirez