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Rock journalist, pickup artist, and best-selling author Neil Strauss has cultivated quite a personality of his own during a career of figuring out -- and writing eloquently about -- the minds of many musicians and celebrities. A prolific writer and reporter with umpteen publications in Rolling Stone and the New York Times from the start of his career, Strauss reached a new plateau when Marilyn Manson got a book deal and chose him to ghost-write his autobiography, The Long Hard Road Out of Hell. Released in 1998, the book was Strauss' first of many successes and paved the way for his best-known work, 2005's The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists.
do remember my first weekend out with Marilyn Manson writing the book," Strauss told County Grind recently by phone.
"Not as a journalist but a member of the circus. There were three times during
writing the book where I was sure that I was close to death or in
dangerous situations. In retrospect, those stupid human tricks are great
memories -- many of which have been captured on video."
Sadly, Strauss did not send along any of these video trophies, but he did agree to answer some questions regarding his time with Manson, which overlapped heavily with the October 8 release of Antichrist Superstar 15 years ago. Below is our conversation.