Author Profile: Jono Naito

jononaitoHow and when did you decide, or discover, that you were to be a writer?

This moment has happened a few times- it takes more than one calling for some. I liked to write and think of stories as a kid, but taking the time to learn and practice via a workshop a year back is what really solidified it. The inspiration was always there, but hard work and discipline helped me realize that it made me happy, even when difficult.

What inspired you to write flash fiction?

Time. My life has been chaotic, and the fleeting glimpse of a flash piece is not only great to read, but to write. My scenery, life, job, trajectory is all changing, and it is hard to focus as much as I would like. Flash is nice because you can write the first draft in one sitting, capture the feeling or moment, and do each edit in one sitting as well. It is efficient, bite-sized, and delicious.

Describe your writing process.

Deadlines. I respond well to structure and rigor, and as a survival tool I have been training myself for some time now to write even if I don’t think I can- writer’s block is much rarer these days. I do not write every single day, sometimes that is not possible. But I do set goals, almost like homework. If I don’t write today, I gotta make up for it- I have a draft due for myself by next week. It is more rewarding, and works better with a difficult schedule.

What was the inspiration behind what was published on FewerThan500.com?

I grew up in an apartment, and fuse boxes were magical things to me, like the treasure chest of a home as our fuse box was nowhere near our particular apartment. Living in a rural setting in a house recently, spending times in houses, exploring houses, I find myself drawn to the fuse box every time. And they are often in odd places. It got me thinking, everyone has their calling, their purpose, right? It’s kinda like the fuse box, it just isn’t always where you expect.

What are you working on now?

I have been finishing up my stories and ideas of the past few months to have a bit of a clean slate entering September. I will be attending the MFA program in Fiction at Syracuse University as the Cornelia Carhart Ward Scholar. I am excited a flurry of my work has made it out there; I have been most recently honored to be in Paper Darts, the Molotov Cocktail, and now here. Upcoming I will be in Beorh Weekly and Paper Darts again. As of recently, I was chosen as Editor’s Pick in the Hummingbird Prize for Flash Fiction at PULP Literature for a story called ‘Chipping’, the writing of which set off the flash fiction binge that led to ‘Fuse Box’.

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