Monday, April 4, 2016

Virtual Name Before the Masses Tour for In Defense of the Moth or A Meaningless Dance in Blinding Heat and Light by Johnny Newport

In Defense of the Moth
A Meaningless Dance in Blinding Heat and Light
by Johnny Newport


GENRE: Literary Fiction



The Moon...

It is said the moon’s spell can move us and nobody understands her pull like Johnny Gomez.

Johnny, a devil-may-care and fatalistic salesman, remains tethered to his privileged life by a love for his children, his career and the moon—and not necessarily in that order. In fact, it’s Johnny’s lifelong passion for the moon, through both obsessive, independent study and a communal involvement in an astronomy society, that serves as the only outward distraction as a life of standard struggles waxes into a burgeoning crisis.

Until one night Johnny finds that the moon—his preferred method of self-medication-- no longer exists...but for him only and not anyone else.

Or so it seems, leaving Johnny’s continued marriage with reality to hinge on his rediscovery of the moon!

If you like allegories and/or philosophical apologies for acute insanity, grab “In Defense of the Moth or A Meaningless Dance in the Blinding Heat and Light” and join the eclipse.


Excerpt Two:

“I walked past a block of shuttered buildings. Most I noticed had been shuttered for a long time, but the last office was a more recent failure. It was a beauty salon last I remembered. I reached the street corner where the tall street lamp was planted in the sidewalk and I gazed upward. A flutter of moths danced to the low hum of energy the light created. It wasn’t much and it wasn’t for long as they would be dead soon, but at least without the light of the moon they had the luck of having a substitute for their meaning, even if artificial, through man’s production.

They owe us one, I thought.”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Johnny Newport (The Moth) is carrying the consciousness of the oft-failed man native to 2016. Strictly from a visual standpoint he looks like he may be kept in a nice package, but this is not so. Johnny Newport has two feet on the warpath and probably smells like last night’s street tacos.

Johnny knows that his devil-may-care attitude is unfair—to himself and to others—but this is precisely the origin for the voice of an unbridled generation of privilege; the 21st-century-livers that intimately know they have squandered (squandered what? How can we say definitively and with any assurance despite knowing that a squandering has, indeed, befallen?), and will continue to do so, happily.

Otherwise about me, I studied at the University of Texas at Austin, have spent the last two years in The Writer's Path program at SMU (Southern Methodist University, Dallas) and have applied to a handful of low-res MFA programs for fall of '16.

Short story publications in 2015 were:

* Mr. Franklin’s Heartbreaking Sympathy (The Speculative Book, anthology)

* La Tortuga, (Limestone, University of Kentucky MFA journal)

* He, Who Controls the Spices (Euphemism, Illinois State University graduate journal)

* I Blame Lolita (Moth magazine, Ireland's premiere literary review)
* Letter to the Jew's Mom (The Vehicle, Eastern Illinois University online journal)


Interview with Johnny Newport
As a kid did you write or make up stories? I don’t think I did much of either, to be honest. I read all manner of books, however, and was a consistent reader from the earliest days I can remember being able to read until now.

Where does most of your Character inspiration come from? Most of my character inspiration comes directly from my life and people I either know or indirectly from amalgamations of people I know.

Do some qualities of your characters come from real people? Absolutely. All of them, I would say, because my characters are slaves to the human form and condition. I do not have enough creativity or wit or intelligence or divine inspiration to invent new or hitherto unknown qualities so I mostly co-opt qualities I experience from other people. The rest are qualities I have, good, bad or indifferent.

What was the inspiration for your book? The inspiration for my book was a negative one. I was forcing myself into a sabbatical from drink and drug and was in a miserable, white-knuckle state. I thought it a good time to catch up on reading but found that, with every book I picked up, I could not stay with it and would quit within a chapter or two. This went for every style and genre of book I tried and eventually got to the point of frustration that I vented to a friend. My friend told me it was the Universe’s way of telling me it was time to write again (I’d laid the pen down circa 2011 to try and save my insanity), and so I did. The miserable state I was in thus inspired me.

What is your favorite spot to write? My favorite spot to write was on a chaise lounge I had in my living room, between the hours of 10:00pm to around 2:00am, Friday through Sunday. I did a lot of my self-editing (pre-editing?) at the flagship Half Price Books in Dallas.

What advice would you give budding writers? If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times, but read as much as you possibly can get away with.


Johnny Newport will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.