Bestselling author Augusten Burroughs has seen his memoir, Running with Scissors, ride the New York Times bestseller list for over two years; now, the book has been adapted to a film, starring Annette Bening as Burroughs' mentally ill mother. Burroughs was in Seattle recently to promote the film, and graciously sat down with Cinematical to chat about the book, the movie, and what's up next for him. Burroughs was impeccably dressed, soft-spoken at first but more animated once we broke the ice. He was by turns thoughtful, funny, and introspective, elegant and articulate -- as you might expect from a man who boiled and polished his coins to make them shiny when he was a child. The one giveaway to the inner nervous energy hovering beneath the calm surface was his nonstop nicotine gum habit ("Quitting smoking?" I asked upon seeing the skeletons of several packs of nicotine gum in the trash. "Oh, no, I quit years ago," he replied casually, as he popped a piece of gum in his mouth.)

Cinematical: Talk to me about the process of making the book into a movie. I know you were very creatively involved throughout, can you talk a little about how that all came about?

Augusten Burroughs: I first met Ryan in a restaurant in a hotel in Soho . I was meeting him, actually, to tell him that I wasn't optioning Running with Scissors. I just didn't have any confidence that Hollywood was going to get it right. I was kind of worried that the humor I'd used as a coping mechanism to survive my childhood would end up being the focal point of the movie, that it would end up being very campy or kooky.

categories Interviews, Cinematical