Bret Easton Ellis (born March 7, 1964 in Los Angeles, California) is a bisexual American author. He was regarded as one of the so-called literary Brat Pack, which also included Tama Janowitz and Jay McInerney. He has called himself a moralist, although he is one of his generation's most controversial authors because of his graphic prose style. Influenced by French social realists like Flaubert and Balzac, Ellis updates those novelists' themes of youthful ennui, materialism, status obsession, and social trangression; he also employs their technique of linking novels with common, recurring characters. His dystopic locales typically make use of large, dense cities such as Los Angeles, New York and Paris.
In August 2005, Ellis broke his silence about his bisexuality and told The New York Times that his best friend and lover for six years, Michael Wade Kaplan, died in January 2004, at the age of 30. The article entitled, "Bret Easton Ellis: The Man in the Mirror" states the following about Michael Wade Kaplan and Bret Easton Ellis' relationship:
'The other dedication is to Michael Wade Kaplan, who Mr. Ellis said was his best friend and lover for six years, and who died, in January 2004, at the age of 30. They did not live together, Mr. Ellis said: "It was a very loose kind of partnership. It was not particularly conventional, and neither one of us was interested in the lifestyle, I guess."
Mr. Kaplan died barely a month after Mr. Ellis had traveled from New York to Los Angeles to spend Christmas with his mother and two sisters, as he has in most years since he finished college and moved to Manhattan. He planned to spend a few months finishing the final draft of "Lunar Park" and then return to New York.
Instead, he said, Mr. Kaplan's unexpected death left him in a tailspin. He did not attend the funeral in Michigan, he said, because he could not even bring himself to leave his room - the room in his mother's house in Sherman Oaks, in the San Fernando Valley, where he grew up. And he stayed in Los Angeles for 19 months, shuffling from mother to sister to friend and finally a series of hotels, suffering what he calls "a midlife crisis."
"His death was a big catalyst to finish the novel", Mr. Ellis said, and it probably added "a new layer of wistfulness and melancholy to the writing" that had not been there before.'