Nebraska Center for Writers

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About Poe Ballantine

501 MINUTES TO CHRIST
DECLINE OF THE LAWRENCE WELK EMPIRE
GOD CLOBBERS US ALL
THINGS I LIKE ABOUT AMERICA



501 Minutes to Christ
Copyright © 2007
by Poe Ballantine
Hawhthorne Books & Literary Arts
How to Buy

Poe Ballantine’s second collection of personal essays follows in the tradition of Things I Like About America. Stories range from "The Irving," which details Mr Ballantine's diabolical plan to punch John Irving in the nose after opening for him before an audience of 2,000 people that launched the literary festival, Wordstock; to "Wide-Eyed in the Gaudy Shop," which tells how, in Mexico, the narrator met and later married his wife, Cristina; to "Blessed Meadows for Minor Poets," the devastating tale of how after years of sacrifice and persistence, Mr Ballantine finally secured a contract with a major publisher for a short story collection that never came to fruition. Ever present in this collection of essays are the odd jobs, eccentric characters, boarding houses, buses, and beer that populate Mr Ballantine's landscape and make his stories uniquely his own. The title story, "501 Minutes to Christ," was included in the Houghton-Mifflin anthology, Best American Essays 2006.


Decline of the Lawrence Welk Empire
Copyright © 2006
by Poe Ballantine
Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts
How to Buy

In this follow-up to God Clobbers Us All, Edgar Donahoe is back for another misguided adventure. When Edgar is expelled from college, he accepts his pal Mountain Moses' offer to come to a Caribbean island. Once there, Edgar cooks at the local tourist resort and falls in love with Mountain's girl, Kate. Embroiled in a dangerous love triangle and stalked by a mysterious local, he turns to medicine man Cinnamon Jim for help — but even the supernatural may not be able to save him now. Ballantine's \ quirky humor and captivating prose have drawn comparison to Kerouac and Bukowski, but his voice remains inimitably his own in this raucous, riveting adventure. — from the publisher

Real vibrancy. — Publishers Weekly


God Clobbers Us All
Copyright © 2004
by Poe Ballantine
Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts
How to Buy

Eighteen-year-old Edgar Donahoe is a rest home nurse's aid surfer-boy adulterer who, along with his lesbian Blackfoot nurse's aid best friend, Pat Fillmore, becomes responsible for the disappearance of their fellow worker, Beverly Fey, after an LSD party gone awry. Set against the dilapidated halls of a San Diego rest home, Lemon Acres, in the 1970s, this story is the shimmering, hysterical and melancholy account of Edgar's struggles with romance, death, friendship, and an ill-advised affair with the wife of a maladjusted war veteran. Ballantine's own brand of delicious quirkiness and storytelling is smooth and compelling, and God Clobbers Us All is guaranteed to satisfy Ballantine fans, as well as convert those lucky enough to be discovering his work for the first time. Suggestive of Charles Bukowski and Jack Kerouac, Ballantine's first novel is offbeat, compelling, and fun! — from the publisher

It's impossible not to be charmed by the narrator of Poe Ballantine's comic and sparklingly intelligent God Clobbers Us All. — Publishers Weekly


Things I Like About America
Copyright © 2002
by Poe Ballantine
Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts
How to Buy

In a style reminiscent of David Sedaris, Barbara Ehrenreich, and Scott Carrier, these true stories of odd jobs, eccentric characters, boarding houses, buses, and beer chronicle Ballantine's search for America as he rides the Greyhound bus from small town to small town where he struggles to exist on minimum wage and be published. Written with piercing intimacy and self-effacing humor, Ballantine's stories provide entertainment, social commentary, and poignant slices of life. — from the publisher


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