Did Peter Pan Inspire This Gay Prostitute Turned Novelist?
BY Savas Abadsidis
February 27 2013 6:00 AM ET
Why do you still live at home? Don't you think it would be healthy to be on your own?
Well, I mean if you read the book, I clearly don't make decisions based on how healthy they'd be for my life. In all seriousness, moving out goes against a lot of my character. I hate growing up. I hate change. I know that kind of responsibility will lead to me being viewed as an adult and that scares the shit out of me. I know, deep down, I like the idea of being a little boy trapped in my parents house as I've used it to my advantage at times to turn on perspective clients. Many people tell me that I "fake dependence." Basically meaning that I act like a little boy lost, but I'm very sly and capable of taking care of myself. This is really illustrated more and more throughout the rest of the trilogy.
Also, I really love my neighborhood. [Editor's note: Cristi lives in Bayside, a neighborhood in Queens, New York.] I have my gym and tanning salon right around the block and a pool in my backyard and it's all so convenient. It's closer to midtown than Harlem, which for some reason a lot of people are starting to consider the upper West Side because a lot of transplants move to New York and think they're amazing for living on 168th street. Same with Brooklyn and Astoria. I've been here all my life and people have always looked down on me for being too "Queens-y." Um, where's Astoria? And I'm desperately afraid of bed bugs. Once the epidemic really broke out it really scared me into living at home forever. I might actually just move to like, Miami, just to get away from them — and hipsters.
You have a very specific aesthetic. What does that stem from?
That's a tough question. I guess it's really just from the fact that I'm not trying to write. I just tell it like it is almost conversationally. Again, this was supposed to be a suicide note. I really didn't want it to be too wordy or sophisticated in composition because I didn't want to alienate readers, especially because they were people I care about and people I really wanted to read this. I found it far more important to be sophisticated in message than in style. It was really important for people to hear my voice as they were reading this.
I tried to work with a few editors while in production of this novel and every time they'd send me a draft of their cleaned up work I'd read it over and wince. Not because their work wasn't good, but because I felt like it lost my voice. They would be adding words I wouldn't say or cleaning up things that just made it seem less like me. In the end, I decided to live with the mistakes and edit it myself. I'm clearly a flawed person. If the message gets across, that's the important part.