Bret Easton Ellis’s Short Stories 📚

With many great novels, Bret Easton Ellis has some short stories following the lives of many young adults in Los Angeles.

Bret Easton Ellis

American Author

Though famous for novels like American Psycho,’ ‘Less Than Zero,’ ‘Imperial Bedrooms,’ and ‘Lunar Park,’ Bret Easton Ellis has many short stories. Compiled in ‘The Informers,’ he wrote over ten short stories featuring different characters. However, the short stories shared similarities with ‘Less Than Zero,’ ‘The Rules of Attraction,’ and ‘American Psycho.’ They also feature the same setting, California.

At the Still Point

‘At the Still Point’ is a short story about a man, Timothy Price, meeting his friends Raymond, Dirk, and Graham at a restaurant a year after a member of the friend group, Jaime’s death. Dirk tears up as he remembers the graphic details of Jamie’s death.

When Raymond leaves for the bathroom to cry, Tim follows him and consoles him, lying that Jaime saw him as a good friend even though it was the opposite. Later, Tim notices inconsistencies in Dirk’s side of events as the coroner’s report states that Jaime died instantly. He gets dismissed when he points out the inconsistency in Dirk’s story.

The Up Escalator

‘The Up Escalator’ follows the tribulations of William’s ex-wife. As the mother of two children, Graham and Susan, she visits a psychiatrist for mental treatment. When she gets a dream about her new lover Martin pushing her out a window, she tries telling her children, but they ignore her. She lunches with Martin, and they have sex. After the encounter, she sits by the pool and watches as the pool boy cleans up the carcass of dead rats.

She then gets another dream of the pool boy and rats, and after waking up from her Valium-induced dream, she calls Martin. She visits her psychiatrist to renew her prescriptions, and after quarreling with William, she begins contemplating filling his insulin syringe with air.

Bruce Calls from Mulholland

‘Bruce Calls from Mulholland’ is a short story about an unknown female protagonist who gets a call from Bruce. The call entails Bruce’s romantic life and his sexual encounter with Lauren. She then reminisces about her encounter with Bruce the previous summer. After Bruce moves in with Reynolds, the protagonist gets invited for dinner. However, while she and Reynolds talk, she thinks about Bruce and Lauren’s encounter.

In the Islands

‘In the Islands’ follows Les Price, Timothy Price’s father’s (from ‘At the Still Point’) story. After calling a man named Lynch, Les sees Tim and Graham in line for a movie and begins suspecting they have a relationship. He calls his ex-wife, who tells him Tim does not want to go on a trip with him. However, Les picks up his son, and they travel to Hawaii. Though repetitively failing to talk to his son, Les tries talking to two Chicago women but fails at picking them up. Tim leaves and later meets a girl his age, Rachel. 

Sitting Still

‘Sitting Still’ follows Sunsa, Graham’s sister’s life. When her father plans on getting remarried, she leaves for Los Angeles. Though her father thought she approved of his relationship with Cheryl, Susan tells Graham she does not support the relationship. She calls her mother and learns she has no idea about the wedding.

Water from the Sun

‘Water from the Sun’ follows the life of Cheryl Laine, a news anchor who marries William, Susan, and Graham’s father. Like William’s ex-wife, she loves sleeping with younger men who use her for money, shelter, and food. When she meets her new boyfriend, Danny, she learns that Ricky, Danny’s pal, Biffy’s boyfriend, got murdered. Later, William tries reconciling with Cheryl, but she tells him she is happier with Danny. However, she gets dumped by Danny, who leaves a note.

Letters from LA

‘Letters from LA‘ is a short story about the letters written by Anne, a 20-year-old Cmden College student, to Sean Bateman. After arriving in Los Angeles, Anne gets exposed to the depravity of LA culture and changes from a sensitive person to a vapid drug addict. She meets 30-year-old Randy and claims he became her best friend. However, she shows no sadness when he allegedly gets killed.

Another Gray Area

‘Another Gray Area’ follows the life of Graham, living in an apartment with his girlfriend Christie and two other boys, Randy and Martin. Though he and his mother sleep with Martin, and he suspects Martin to be having an affair with Christie, Graham remains unfazed by the situation. On a lunch date with Christie, Graham learns that a mutual friend got killed in Mexico with all blood drained from them.

During lunch, the couple argue and state they do not care about who they slept with. One morning, Graham wakes up to a hostage situation from across the street. He dismisses it and later gets a call that his father got killed in an airplane crash. He goes to Las Vegas to see his father’s body, and after it gets cremated, he loses all of it to gambling.

The Secrets of Summer

‘The Secrets of Summer’ follows the life of Jaime from ‘At the Still Point.’ Being sexist and racist, Jaime is (or believes he is) a vampire who sleeps in a coffin and drinks the blood of teenage girls during sex. He belongs to a secret society of other vampires, including Dirk and Miranda.

Jaime sees mutilated body parts at Dirk’s house. When Jaime picks up a girl, and she sees through his racism, he kills her. When he visits his psychiatrist, Dr. Nova, his story gets dismissed. After threatening to harm Nova’s daughter, he gets a refill of Darvocet.


Why are Bret’s stories so intriguing?

What makes Bret’s stories intriguing is he becomes the characters he writes. He enters their shoes and impersonates them to the point that one will believe they are real people that existed.

Why do Bret’s characters have severe mental issues?

Living in a degraded society makes even the sanest people crazy. Bret’s characters get affected by the vain life their environment exposes them to. They have no option but to become their worst selves because that is what their society encourages.

What drives Bret’s stories?

Bret’s stories are usually black comedy or satirical. They portray obsession, paranoia, the struggles of adulthood, substance abuse, physical and emotional abuse, and the death of the soul. His stories show how bad things can get in a decadent society where drugs, mindless sex, and excessive consumerism are the norm.

Is The Informers filled with good stories?

Yes. ‘The Informers’ have many great stories. Most of them are interconnected and share characters. With Los Angeles as the primary setting, they show the world through different people with different backgrounds.

Joshua Ehiosun
About Joshua Ehiosun
Joshua is an undying lover of literary works. With a keen sense of humor and passion for coining vague ideas into state-of-the-art worded content, he ensures he puts everything he's got into making his work stand out. With his expertise in writing, Joshua works to scrutinize pieces of literature.
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