Michael T. Tusa Jr was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and, as was traditional, is named after his grandfather, who was born in Sicily. Through a fluke (someone was not paying attention!) his father was also named Michael, or as spelled in Italian, Michele. As a baby his father or mother would drop him off each morning at the Catholic convent next door to their home for the nuns to take care of him. He grew up as a lover of all types of music and of books and, for reasons he still ponders today, in open adolescent rebellion against the world around him. An earring, which seemed a necessary statement, soon followed along with a refusal to cut his hair. But as Albert Camus wrote the rebel is simply one who seeks a different order than the one being imposed on him. That different order was found, for him, (and remains so) in the ideas and affirmation from the authors he read and from the boundary breaking music of the 60's and early 70's in rock and jazz. Along the way he abandoned his Catholic upbringing, studied theology and a bit of Buddhism on his own, tended bar, drove a milk truck, installed carpet, became a lawyer, taught at two universities, and tried to move further East in his thinking. After the end of a 19 year marriage he finally got that tattoo, and seeking to express a hoped for sentiment to live by for the stretch run of his life, it quotes Matthew in the King James Bible: "But I say unto you that ye resist not evil...." In other words stop fighting and lay down the sword. He has published numerous professional articles (alas he had to earn a living), a few poems. He is also the host of a radio program called Writers' Forum on WRBH 88.3 FM New Orleans. His first novel, Advancing on Chaos received an Honorable mention in the 2017 Great Southeast Book Festival and was one of the semi-finalists in the 2017 Faulkner- William Wisdom Creative Writing Contest Award. His first book of poetry is entitled A Modern Theory of Socialism. A Second Chance at Dancing, his second novel, is semi-autobiographical. His third novel, Chasing Charles Bukowski, was short listed as a novella for the 2018 Faulkner/William Wisdom Creative Writing Contest Award. His most recent novel, And Trouble Followed, is a historical novel set in 1868 in America during the Reconstruction period. It was long listed for the Laramie Award by Chanticleer Books, was a finalist for the Faulkner/William Wisdom Creative Writing Contest Award and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award. All novels are available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million and Kindle.
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