He once shot a man to death in the parking lot of a bar. He served in the American invasion of Panama and recalled killing enemy soldiers at close range. That is not the violence that drives him to his keyboard.
He is haunted, instead, by the nine years he made his way in the world by slaughtering chickens.
This Los Angeles Times article talks about Virgil Butler‘s life as an employee at a chicken slaughterhouse. The article and his blog are worthwhile reads. It’s a rare case where slaughterhouse stories are not being told by an infiltrator or someone who’s interviewed employees, but by a long-time employee himself.
Tyson’s (his former employer) stance on his stories is that he’s “a disgruntled worker who invented tales of slaughterhouse horror only after he lost his job.”