Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Interview with author Joseph Lamport. Book Tour for The Life and Times of Richard Musto.

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
 Miguel Cervantes

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 Island in 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

 And Finally

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:
You can buy a copy of the new book online here:
My translations of Chinese poetry can be found here:
My personal poetry blog is here:
The book can be purchased online here:
Category: Biography, Photography, Literary
Tour Date: May/June, 2014
Available in: Print,  210 Pages
Kirkus Reviews – The Best Books of 2013 – Indie
“A winsome character sketch that celebrates a homeless man’s quirky personality and picaresque life story…The result is a heartening lesson on “How to live life in extremis / Yet to the fullest.  A romanticized but beguiling saga of one man’s life on the streets.” 
“In a city known for its larger-than-life  characters, perhaps none boasts a personality as outsized and eccentric as Musto’s”- The New York Daily News
Biography of an eighty-nine-year-old man living on the streets of New York City offers a journalistic investigation into the art of survival in America today.
Joe Lamport met Richard Musto completely by accident. The old man had built a campsite on the street corner down the block from where Joe lives in New York City.
Joe had never seen anyone quite like him, a man of that age living on the streets in a cardboard shack of his own construction. He seemed to be about the age of Joe’s own father, so Joe and his photographer friend
Michel Delsol stopped and spoke with him to hear his story.
Two years and countless conversations later, The Life and Times of Richard Musto: The True Life Story of a Survival Artist is the result. This biography of an anonymous man – Lamport explains that Richard literally calls himself “Anmomas” – tells in blank verse and photographs the true life story of a now nearly ninety-year old man who makes his home on the streets of New York City.
Richard is currently In a rooming house in Atlantic City where his rent is paid up through March 1st. If nothing else, we hope sales from the book will be sufficient to cover the cost of his rent for the following month.
A free download of the first two chapters of The Life and Times of Richard Musto is available at
About Author, Joe Lamport:
Joe Lamport is a translator and poet who lives in New York City. His translations of classic Chinese poetry have been published extensively online by The Epoch Times and Brooklyn Rail. He is also the co-founder of the website and newsletter Tang Spirit Network. He has published a chap book of his own poems online and maintains a blog for other work. He isalso the author of a novel called Dinkelmann’s Rules.
Richard Musto with Writers
Richard Musto with Writers
About Photographer, Michel Delsol:
Michel Delsol’s photography has been shown in solo exhibits at galleries such as the Japanese Information and Cultural Center, of the Japanese Embassy in Washington, DC, Kinokuniya in New York and La Gaia Scienza in Venice, Italy as well in many group exhibits in New York. His work has been selected for  ’Le Journal de la Photographie’ and F-Stop magazine.  His portrait work has been commissioned by leading magazines, book and music publishers and major advertisement agencies.  His work has received awards and nominations from the Society of Publication designers, the International B + W Spider awards, PX3  and One Life International photography. Several additional collections of his photographs are available on his website:
Life and Times of Richard Musto Web Tour Schedule
Indie Reviews Behind the Scenes Apr 16 I 8 pm cst-Recorded
So Many Precious Books May 9 Review & Giveaway
Teena in Toronto May 12 Review                                               
Cassandra M's Place May 13 Review & Giveaway
Inspire to Read May 14 Interview
Every Free Chance May 19 Review & Giveaway
Rebecca's Writing ServcesMay 23 Guest Post
Rebecca's Writing Servces May 30 Review                                
The New In Books May 28 Review & Guest Post
Deal Sharing Aunt May 29 Review & Guest Post
Minnesota Girl in the World June 4 Review                                             
 Open Book Society June 6  Review                                        
Room With Books June 10 Review & Interview
I'd Rather Be At The Beach June 12 Review & Giveaway
Books and Bindings June 16 Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for taking part in the tour and hosting Joe!