At what point does practicing vulnerability fortify ourselves such that we become…invulnerable? This is the vessel on which Constantine Dhonau invites us to explore our most sacred treasure: our inner world. Our voyage is furnished by his journey back across 11 years, from a 17-year-old boy faced with becoming a 28-year-old man, offering a glimpse into his inner dialogue of self-criticism and self-affirmation. We follow his development as a writer and a person as he walks the line between light and dark, love and lust, choice and powerlessness, seeking to free himself from the dichotomous pitfalls of black and white thinking. Throughout this 11-year exploration, he reflects on who he has been, who he is, and whom he wants to become on his way to uncovering a higher calling. He encourages us to embrace the unknown as he bares naked the “collateral intentions” of his choices; those heartfelt efforts which turned against us and those mistakes which became our greatest blessings, in time.
When and where do you prefer to write?
I’m a night writer. I like to wander the deserted streets, imagining I’m the last soul on Earth, rambling on to myself and perhaps the voice memos in my phone. I’ll eventually bring it all back to laying on the floor clickety-clacketing on my laptop.
Cafés are distractions.
Do you need peace and quiet when you are writing?
It depends. Sometimes I highly enjoy collaborating with others. In times like those, sometimes the more chaos the better. Ultimately, I enjoy my looooong long night walks.
If you had the chance to co-write a book, whom would it be with?
My college roommate, Qake. He and I have an incredibly complimentary—yet opposite—approach to…everything.
Say someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
Anti-hero, for sure. Nothing like a solid character to makes their own rules and question your own morality in the process. Deadpool, Spawn, Legion, Wolverine, Riddick, Shinji, (John) Constantine…mmm…gotta love ‘em!
Who would you like/have liked to interview?
Einstein. His genius goes beyond pure celebreality, its intuitive. He firmly believed in God and barely even believed his own theorems. He also seems to have an incredible sense of humor. That would make for a great interview for me.
Where can I find you when you are reading?
Sitting on the front porch. Smoking a Black & Mild wood tip wine. Hair wrapped in a towel after a shower. Shirtless. Glitter slides on my feet. Coffee in hand. Cheap sunglasses on my face. “Tao of Physics” by Fritjof Capra.
Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
Napping, watching shows, walking around, dancing at a bar, intensely focused on another project, playing music, camping, random high-adventure sport excursions with friends, and/or doom-scrolling on my phone.
What went through your mind when you held your new book in your hands for the first time?
When I got the first round of proofs: “The cover still isn’t right and I really need to make these chapter titles cooler.”
When I got the actual final copy: “Thank God! It’s finally over…welp, time to work on the next.”
How did you come up with the title for your book?
I was dreaming on through my thoughts one day, as I do, when that intriguing paradox came to me. I began to wonder what it could mean. I played with the idea in the back of my mind as I continued to pour over the project; collecting, refining, arranging, rereading, and it just fit so perfectly!
How do you pick a cover for your book?
I image searched several key terms that I liked and collected my favorites of what I found. I narrowed it down and uploaded some of them to an online editor to begin playing with different typesetting. Once I had a handful that I really loved, I created online polls and asked my friends to vote in person. Finally, I tweaked it until it all gelled.
Funny thing, the final cover actually taught me more about the content and theme behind the book than I was originally aware. The meta-layers just go deeper the more I think and talk about it.
Thank you, Constantine Dhonau
About the author
Constantine was born in St. Petersburg, Florida and raised by his mother and his aunt, with the help of several formative programs: Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venture Crew, and Sea Scouts. He spent 3 years as the front man for a Tampa ska/punk band: H1N1. After overcoming blind rebellion against “the system,” he attended St. Petersburg College for his Associate of Arts, followed by New College of Florida for his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology.
He made his initial escape to Colorado in 2015—degrees in-handin search of his independence, dedicating a year of service to City Year Denver of AmeriCorps. There, he discovered a new passion and direction in life: wilderness therapy. He pursued his first and only dream and vision in life with ferocity to become a field guide with Open Sky Wilderness Therapy, completing nearly 550 days in the field.
He enjoys writing, tea, cooking, brooding, dancing, yoga, astronomy, reprehensibly long walks, movies, being outdoors, etc. & suchforth.