Every now and then I manage to talk a small press author into showing us a little skin... tattooed skin, that is. I know there are websites and books out there that have been-there-done-that already, but I hadn't seen one with a specific focus on the authors and publishers of the small press community. Whether it's the influence for their book, influenced by their book, or completely unrelated to the book, we get to hear the story behind their indie ink....
Today's ink comes from Michael LoCurto. Michael is a New Yorker—born in Shirley, MFA’d in Southampton, and currently lives in Brooklyn. To Sea is his first novel, and Smith Point Press's debut. He is currently working on his second novel, Significant Lives, due for a 2014 release. For more information, please visit smithpointpress.com.
40° 48’ 9’’ N , 72° 52’ 17’’ W
My wife’s third tattoo as an artist, and my umpteenth on my person.
The significance of the coordinates correlates to the location out at sea where things dramatically change for fisherman John Brand in my debut novel, To Sea. A moment of clarity, so to speak. Please forgive me for holding back, for I do not wish to say too much, spoiling key-events (please read my novel for a deeper understanding; shameless plug: free e-book available via smithpointpress.com). Let’s just say the coordinates relate to the spot where John Brand stares out to sea and when he refocuses back on the coast, the Priest whom he was talking to has walked off along the shore, disappearing into the storm, and John Brand realizes he must stop living for himself—stop solely fulfilling his own dreams—but to live for his family—to live for his wife and his son. To support his family. To abandon his career as a fisherman and to look elsewhere for work. John Brand recognizes that his life is more than his own, and that he must step up to the helm and do whatever it takes to provide a supporting income—to work inland, if need be. To do whatever it may take to keep the family together.
Have I said too much?
A word on the overall tattoo design: the anchor over the wheel symbolizes how John never leaves the land. He’s anchored to the land—barred from the seafaring life he’s lived all his days.
The tattoo also represents, in real life, in my own life, my absolute favorite spot in all the world. With my toes shoved deep in the sand and the sun shining brightly and the waves singing. My little nook in the dunes that Sandy washed away last year.