Publishing

Bret Easton Ellis: American Psycho would not be published today – BT.com

Bret Easton Ellis has said his book American Psycho would not be published today.

His novel about serial killer and investment banker Patrick Bateman, which was later made into a film starring Christian Bale, came out in 1991 after it was rejected by his first publisher.

The book was Ellis’s third offering after his debut Less Than Zero, which made him famous at the age of 21, and mentions Donald Trump 40 times.

Christian Bale starred in American Psycho (Neil Munns/PA)

The author, whose latest book is called White, told The Observer: “That book wouldn’t be published now.

“I mean, no one wanted to publish it then. Very few people came forward. I was just lucky.

“But what’s interesting is that I didn’t know until I was putting White together just how haunted I’d been by American Psycho. I can’t get away from Patrick Bateman.

“I mean, it was prescient, and not only because of Trump.”

Ellis describes the president as an “idiot” and “grotesque” and said he is irritated that he has been described as an apologist for him.

He said: “Molly Jong-Fast, the daughter of Erica Jong, wrote this piece in the Daily Beast where she asked: How did he turn into his Maga cap-wearing ultra-conservative?

“These people have been raised to think their reactions to things are completely correct and that the other side is not only totally wrong but also therefore immoral, sexist and racist.

“All my book argues is: let’s have a conversation. But of course it has already been totalled in America. My ability to trigger millennials is insane.”

Ellis has previously blasted millennials as “generation wuss” and he told the paper: “What I’ve noticed is a kind of helplessness of millennials.

“I didn’t realise this until lately, but I was on my own. My parents were narcissistic baby boomers, more interested in themselves than us.

“Not that they didn’t love us, but they were very wrapped up in their own live.

“I do remember floating on my own. I had to grow up on my own. I had to figure things out for myself.

“I had some help. I’m not saying I didn’t. But certainly, there wasn’t the overprotective bubble that so many of my friends raised their children in.”

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