Joe Lamport and Michel Delsol, Author & Photographer of The Life and Times of Richard Musto.
1. Are you famous is the general question I get when family and friends introduces me to their friends. It always left me with a pause as quick comebacks filters through my mind but ending up saying something like ….”Oh gee thanks” and give a shy smile, silly I know but the idea unsettles me. (a)Does this happen to you and (b) what do you say?
This is not a question I can relate to inasmuch as I don’t usually introduce myself as a writer nor is that the way my friends think of me or introduce me in turn. Up until now writing hasn’t been very much part of my public persona.
2. In general do you like to talk about you writing and published books or are you very close-lip about it? If no why?
I very much like to talk about my writing (and my books) even though I don’t have much occasion to do so. It’s not a topic that other people seem to find nearly so interesting as we writers ourselves do. Since writers tend to spend so much time brooding over our work, I always find it hard to stop talking about it when the opportunity does present itself.
3. What book/s are you currently writing and what is it about?
I’m currently writing a non-fiction book as a work for hire. I don’t currently have a new book of my own that I’m working on.
4. Why this particular genre?
The genre of my new book is most unusual – a non-fiction poem. I’m not exactly sure why I decided to write it this way. Once the idea occurred to me, though, it seemed absolutely necessary, as if there could be no other way to tell this particular story. I like the idea of applying very traditional literary conventions in telling a true story. I hope it expands the boundaries of what readers accept as literature. For me it also had the further beneficial effect of expanding my understanding of the truth.
5. What inspire or motivate you to write?
Usually I write in order to figure things out – If I have an experience that I want to better understand, writing provides a great way to do so.
6. What is the writing process like for you?
Usually it’s very enjoyable as long as I’m able to maintain a regular routine. I find there are typically only 2 or at most 3 hours in any given afternoon when I can really concentrate and produce good stuff. It’s important to plan my day carefully in order to make best use of that time.
7. How did/do you teach yourself to write?
By translating Chinese poetry.
8. What aspect of the craft do you think is most difficult to learn?
Marketing. I have very limited patience for it but recognize it is absolutely necessary, especially for self-publishers. It calls for certain skills (such as concision) that are not my natural strength.
9. What has been the most encouraging comment someone has made about your writing?
That they found it interesting; that they laughed; that they read a passage out loud.
10. What is the best and/ or worst part of being a writer?
That we are free to think and write exactly as we choose – this is the great opportunity each of us has as a writer. Unlike actors or playwrights or movie directors, we don’t need help from other people to practice our craft. Now in the golden age of self-publishing – we don’t even need to worry about finding an agent or publisher!
I suppose the worst part about being a writer nowadays is that writing is becoming much less valued in our culture; people don’t care about books, they don’t have time or inclination to read. But I see this as both good and bad for writers. It’s bad obviously because it means there are fewer readers. It’s good because it provides us with an enormous range of freedom to say exactly what we choose to say, without worrying overly much about achieving commercial success in a rapidly disappearing market.
11. Any advice for struggling writers?
Live a full and rewarding life, don’t just be an observer. I think good writing more often results from life that has been fully lived rather than the other way around.
12. Favorite author?Samuel Beckett, Anna Akhmatova
13. What did you do before you became a writer?
I’ve done lots of different things - I’ve worked as a chauffeur, a lawyer, an Internet entrepreneur, and most recently as a business consultant.
14. Was it a life long dream or triggered recently?
Always wanted to be a writer but as a younger person never really felt I had anything in particular I wanted to say. I didn’t sit down to try and write seriously until I turned 40 and had lived through some experiences that seemed like they might be worth recording.
15. What do you like to do when not writing?
Favorite thing is working in the garden on fine spring day.
16. Do you have a bucket/ to-do list and would you share at least two things on it?
Not really but I would like to travel more. The last few decades I have been very sedentary while raising 2 kids and living with a house full of pets. So I would very much like to travel in
China, particularly across the western interior regions. Also I would like to paddle around Long Islandin my kayak.
17. This or that questions:
· Coffee or Tea - both – tea first thing in the morning and before bed at night; coffee the rest of the time
· Sweet or savory – savory
· Home make meal or takeouts – home cooking for sure
· Winter or summer – summer by a mile
· Night-owl or Early-Bird – neither really
· Telephone or visits – hate the telephone – an instrument of the devil – much prefer face to face
· Which social network do you prefer? - Linkedin I suppose
· Blogger or website? Not sure I understand the difference
· What does your family say about your career? Supportive or Clueless - wife is very supportive – kids are clueless
Moto/wisdom in life you live by.From the Heart Sutra:Form is no different than Emptiness/Emptiness is no different than Form
Contact details and buy links of the newest books you would like the readers to know.Website for my new book is: www.lifeofmusto.comYou can buy a copy of the new book online here: https://gumroad.com/l/lifeofmusto
My translations of Chinese poetry can be found here:My personal poetry blog is here:http://Lampoetry.blogspot.com
The book can be purchased online here: https://gumroad.com/l/lifeofmusto
Life and Times of Richard Musto Web Tour ScheduleIndie Reviews Behind the Scenes Apr 16 I 8 pm cst-RecordedSo Many Precious Books May 9 Review & GiveawayTeena in Toronto May 12 ReviewCassandra M's Place May 13 Review & GiveawayInspire to Read May 14 InterviewRebecca's Writing Servces May 30 ReviewThe New In Books May 28 Review & Guest PostDeal Sharing Aunt May 29 Review & Guest PostMinnesota Girl in the World June 4 ReviewOpen Book Society June 6 ReviewRoom With Books June 10 Review & InterviewI'd Rather Be At The Beach June 12 Review & GiveawayBooks and Bindings June 16 Review, Guest Post & Giveaway