About

Michael Andrew Ellis
Michael Andrew Ellis

I write literary fiction at the confluence of Mormonism, Hmong culture, and the human condition. This is my personal website and blog. Here I write about Mormon arts and letters, Hmong history and culture, classic and contemporary literature, existentialism, and my journey as a writer.

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My Top Posts

My top five posts from 2014 were:


My Biography

I am the author of the Hmong-themed short story “Cocked,” which I self-published. I have also been published in Dialogue: a Journal of Mormon ThoughtPaj Ntaub Voice, and Touchstones. I am currently working on my debut novel as well as helping my wife write her memoir.

I was born in Atlanta, Georgia. I spent my elementary school years in Pleasant Grove, Alabama, but grew up, during my high school years, in Winchester, Virginia. I hold an English degree from Brigham Young University, where I had the opportunity to study with Douglas H. Thayer, one of the greats of serious Mormon literature. I also have a Legal Studies degree from Utah Valley University. For my “day job,” I work as a document automation consultant at HotDocs.

I have been married to my wife, Shoua, for nearly 25 years. We have three children and live in Utah, just south of Salt Lake City.


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Colophon

I am a slow writer, and it’s mainly from these obsessions with writing processes that I often get. For many years, I’ve started things in longhand and then typed them up either on the typewriter or the computer. I have many graph composition notebooks with notes and half-starts. I’ve also tried yellow legal pads and writing on letter- and legal-sized copy paper. I’ve even tried Nabokov’s method of using note cards. It’s evident then that I like writing longhand. It gives me pleasure to see my words form beneath my hand. While it’s certainly easier to write each sentence over and over again on the computer until I “get it right,” I am fascinated by manuscripts because they seem more real than a computer page. I feel more authentic writing longhand. But this constant switching back and forth among methods gets me no where fast.

My Analog Writing Tools

Currently, my writing process consists of scribbling ideas, sentences, and paragraphs in 5 x 5 ruled graph composition notebooks or narrow-ruled yellow legal pads with a Pilot Precise V5 pen; typing on my Royal FP, Olympia portable, or Smith-Corona portable typewriter when I get the urge; and then crafting the final product, sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph, in the word processor of the moment: Neo2 and/or Scrivener.

My Writing Tools