About Michael Estrin

I write funny stories in multiple genres. My first novel is Murder and Other Distractions, a slacker comedy about a stoner clickbait writer who becomes the prime suspect in a double-homicide investigation. Why Bot, a loose retelling of Frankenstein set in a modern newsroom, will soon be available for purchase. I beta test my novels on Wattpad. In 2016, my novel Not Safe for Work won a Watty Award for Best New Voice.

My short stories have appeared at Akashic and Out of the Gutter. My creative nonfiction has been published by Narratively, Vox, and Tablet. Like the ashes of a Viking warrior dispatched to Valhalla, my journalism is scattered all over the Web. I’m also the co-creator of The Newest Americans with the award-winning photographer and total mensch Sam Comen. Our exhibit is on tour around the U.S. and quite possibly on its way to a museum near you.

A little more about little old me…

I grew up in 1990s Los Angeles, where I dreamed of writing stories that would go viral so that I could level-up my Instagram following in order to make my dog an influencer. No wait, that’s chronologically impossible. I’m actually part of Generation Catalano, the largely overlooked cohort stuck between Generation X and Millennials. We’re too old to really “get” the internet and too young to ignore it. Upside: we crush it when it comes to obscure pop culture references. Downside: our jokes may require consultation of the ye olde Google machine.

Because I have twisted sense of humor, I moved to New York for law school even though I wanted to become a writer. That was a terrible idea that almost crushed my soul under a mountain of cynicism. But after a job interview went sideways, the lawyer who didn’t want me to work at his firm hired me to write jokes for a humor book he was editing. My first gig!

Confident that I was the next typing-fast-cashing-big-checks-guy, I moved back to Los Angeles, where I wrote screenplays for producers who were short on funds, but long on promises. I also wrote articles for the internet, which at the time, made me the go-to guy for questions like: how do websites make money?

As it turned out, very few websites in those days were making money. But one place that could afford to hire writers was the second best trade publication in the porn industry. So, I became an adult entertainment journalist. My Not Safe for Work series is loosely based on my time as a porn reporter, although I was never a bystander to a shootout at a gangbang, nor did I solve any murders.

Eventually, porn journalism led to tech journalism, then magazine assignments, and finally ghostwriting. Boo!

I live in Los Angeles with my wife, Christina, and our dog, Mortimer. Pro tip: never name your pet after a villain from an ‘80s Eddie Murphy comedy. You've been warned.