Author Nathanael West, playwright David Mamet, actors Al Pacino and Jack Lemmon, and filmmakers Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino are discussed by Dan Jones and first-time guest.

Interview with author of "Secrets - Short Fiction"

[The sound quality of the interview was poor due to prolonged whispering. The joke, to conduct the interview under hush-hush conditions, failed. However, reading a transcribed interview about “Secrets – Short Fiction” fits, seeing as they are not initially told aloud but read ... unless you happen to read them aloud. Maybe record yourself reading this out loud, and then play it back while reading along a second time.]


(Host, Dan Jones, quietly hums an improvised tune while snapping his fingers.)

Host Dan Jones: (Whispering) Okay, so I don’t have any intro music, but it has been requested that we do another Codpast with the author of “Secrets.” So this is that podcast which is a Codpast. So, please, welcome Dan Jones. Dan Jones, if you could please keep your voice down. We are very interested in your work, whatever you have to say, but you just have to whisper during it.

Dan Jones Author of Secrets: (Loud and clear) Hi, I’m Dan –

HDJ: (Whispering) Just, please, keep your voice down. This is for “Secrets.” We understand you maybe have written some other things.

DJAOS: (Whispering) Yes, yes. I’ve written Crystal and Her Family. It’s a novel. I self-published it.

(Interview continues in whispers.)

HDJ: Okay, and you’ve also written –

DJAOS: I’ve written a lot of screenplays for movies. And I’ve written some other stuff. You know, I’ve written a lot of stuff. Just a lot of novels and a lot of screenplays.

HDJ: So where could people find these?

DJAOS: Um, next question.

HDJ: Sure. So, “Secrets.” I understand when you first put these out – how did the process go, what happened?

DJAOS: Well, I moved into a new neighborhood, and for the first time, I was kind of going to places, um, to get groceries.

HDJ: To be honest, Dan Jones, author of Secrets, I’m very bored by what you’re saying already. So could you just – could you speak faster? Just because you’re speaking quietly doesn’t mean you can’t speak quickly.

DJAOS: Got it. Okay. Well, I moved into a new neighborhood.

HDJ: We heard that part.

DJAOS: Yes, okay, and, um, and so for the first time, I was seeing how I could get to places on my bike. It was small drives. Short drives. But I could get there pretty quickly. A lot of things were within reach, if you will.

HDJ: Again, Dan Jones, I’m very bored by what you’re talking about. Could you just get to the point of how you started writing “Secrets”?

DJAOS: Yeah, okay. So, anyway … so, I decided to do a brochure which would be called “Secrets.” And I could pass these out to local businesses, and those businesses could give those to other people, obviously, so they’d be potential readers. This would have to be for free. It would have to be out of my own pocket. But the only thing I’d be paying for would be the printing, which even that became a problem in the end.

HDJ: So what’s the end? How long did this go on for?

DJAOS: I wrote these for five years. It was probably over … I’m trying to remember now. It was roughly between 200 and 300 copies for each issue, I believe.

HDJ: And how many total issues did you have?

DJAOS: Well, I had 40, even though it was five years. This is how it ended up working out. Because 0 to 10, 10 to 20, 20 to 30, 30 to 40.

HDJ: Yeah, that doesn’t make any sense. That would be four years.

DJAOS: I know, I, uh, there’s – something happened. I don’t know. There were 40 issues, but it was five years.

HDJ: Okay, go on.

DJAOS: Um, so when I passed them out, people were really interested. And I didn’t get a lot of, like, emails. I had some. For sure. But it got people who would then know I was the author, because they had read one the week before or something like that.

HDJ: Again, sorry, I have to cut you off, Dan Jones, author of “Secrets.” I’m very – I’m just so bored by everything you’re saying. Like, I’m not interested in any of this at all. I don’t know why. I know it’s your story, it’s like your origin story of “Secrets,” but I almost wish I didn’t have you as a guest and that we weren’t doing this Codpast, just to be completely honest.

DJAOS: I appreciate your honesty, I guess. So what do you want me to – I mean, you want me to be funny or something? I don’t know what you want me to do.

HDJ: I don’t know. Tell me about: what’s the process?

DJAOS: The process of writing short stories?

HDJ: Yeah.

DJAOS: I mean, I don’t even know if you told the audience that, as the host of your Codpast, as you call it.

HDJ: I guess I didn’t. So, Dan Jones is the author of “Secrets.” They are short stories. They are fiction which means fake. And, uh, and so they’re short stories he wrote – I don’t really have anything else to say about it. I think that’s why I didn’t introduce – I’m even bored by introducing you as the author, because it’s not very interesting. You write short stories. Who really cares, honestly? The people who read them would care … I don’t know. So what are you doing now? You did it for five years and then what?

DJAOS: Well, I, uh … I … I now have them online, I guess. I’m writing “Secrets.” They’re not exactly the same style. I’ve been messing with a different type of style. And, uh, yeah.

HDJ: You know the other thing is, Dan Jones, author of “Secrets,” I sometimes feel like you’re messing with your stubble on your face, and I wonder if that’s going to be too loud on the mic.

DJAOS: I don’t know. I’m sorry if it is.

HDJ: Yeah, it might be irritating to the audience.


HDJ: Okay, so let’s wrap this up. Because I don’t like this. I don’t like you, honestly. I don’t – I don’t like that you came in here to do this Podcast and that you’re my guest.

DJAOS: Okay, well, um, “Secrets.” It is – you know my process is that I write short stories. I might have weird ideas, um – “Secrets” was a title I made up a long time ago. I wanted it to be something like “The Twilight Zone,” but I wanted it to be my own thing. Sort of the thoughts that people don’t admit they have, or maybe stories that are like stranger than just, you know, a day in the life. Short stories are supposed to be like a day in the life type of thing, and supposed to be in very large plots. And I wanted mine to be even off from that. If you have a really weird thought and it comes and goes in two seconds, what if that were a short story?

HDJ: Yeah, no one really cares. So that’s Dan Jones, the author of “Secrets – Short Fiction.” And check him out on – where can they read these, now that you’re online and no longer riding your bike around, handing out stupid pamphlets that nobody cares about?

DJAOS: Thank you for that. It’s on, which I believe … that’s where your podcast is. So I don’t even know why you’re having me, you know, give that.

HDJ: Okay, thank you for joining us.

(Host quietly hums and snaps to simulate a fade out.)




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