ABOUT THE AUTHOR
PhotoShoot, Jon's 2nd book in the Channey Moran action / thriller series has been released!
PhotoShoot brings the reader face to face with Somali pirates during the kidnapping of a group of American tourists. Propelled into a gripping evaluation of his life, Channey must survive a rescue mission headed by the notorious Roy Roy while deciding to what lengths he will go to help people he doesn't even know!
The true story behind this fictional rendition began when the 2009 hijacking of the MV Maersk Alabama caught Riley's attention in 2010. Inspired to write Channey's next adventure, Riley investigated many resources including a memoir from survivors of a lengthy stay in the Somali bush and Jay Bahadur's book about this time spent amongst Somali pirates.
Out of sight, out of mind, Riley's new novel sheds light on the victims' point of view when kidnapped, brutalized, and held captive by pirates during a time when pirates are terrorizing every sort of vessel, small or large, in the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea, and the Indian Ocean after no American vessel had been seized by pirates since early part of the nineteenth century.
Jon Michael Riley
Western North Carolina resident, Author of fiction novels based on major events in history.
Born in Lowell, Massachusetts and as a young child moved to North Carolina where Jon and his family lived in small mill towns. There he enjoyed a particularly schizophrenic childhood with heated white supremacy at school and elsewhere, while his home life was filled with books, interesting conversation, and a wide-‐horizon view of the world.
After graduating from the Atlanta College of Art, he and his wife Catherine lived and studied in Paris on a French Government Scholarship. A year later Jon returned to attend New York University’s Graduate Institute of Film and Television.
He subsequently worked his way—with help and encouragement from Catherine—into being a New York studio and location photographer of considerable reputation, straddling that delicate line between commercial, client-‐based work, and art photography. His wide range of clients included IBM, AT&T, Audi, Elizabeth Arden, Canon, Coca-‐Cola, FedEx, Marshall Amps, and a number of banks and investment firms. Rizzoli published his first book on Ireland, entitled The Irish File- Images from a Land of Grace.
Because of a serious back injury, Jon backed away from the physical rigors of high-‐end photography and began to write, attend writers’ workshops and conferences.
Dream the Dawn is Jon’s second novel and the first in a Channey Moran series. Up next is the second in that series, entitled Photo Shoot, a story where the photographer, Channey Moran, goes to Somalia to help rescue some good people from bad‐boy pirates.
On the back burner is an image book on all the sacred things and places in Ireland, a place Jon has lived in, studied and knows well. The working title is Spirit and Remembrance- The Sacred Ireland. With most principle photography completed, all it really needs is a good publisher.
Jon lives in a quiet mountain cove outside of Asheville, North Carolina.
I’ve gotten good at re-inventing myself. Early on I went from juvenile delinquent to an angry-young-man art school graduate majoring in sculpture and printmaking.
Still somewhat in that guise, I went, along with my wife Catherine, to Paris for a year on a French government grant. I studied with the well-known and innovative printmaker, Stanley Hayter. While among the French I decided not to attend graduate school at RISD as I had planned, but to make my way into filmmaking in New York City.
The visual compositional itch wasn’t fulfilled by film or video – way too many people involved - so I backed my way into still-photography where I stayed and flourished. We had a nice studio on East 37th Street in Murray Hill, which provided a good living for us as we soon had two daughters.
Eventually the writing bug bit and I took numerous writing workshops and went to writing conferences. I struggled with my first novel for six years and after another two or three, I finished a second novel, one that takes place in New York City and Ireland. Although the agent query process is in progress, neither has found a publisher.
I still work in photography in the form of book projects and the occasional gallery show. Much of our work is syndicated internationally by Getty Images, thanks to Catherine who was a top-notch producer who worked well with TSI, Workbook Stock, and Getty art directors to produce shoots that found a huge market. I occasionally teach photography workshops & schools.
So this book is the result of my Irish journey, a Celtic walkabout to search for, and make these photographic images, mostly in the hidden, quiet parts of this land, remote and frequently by-passed, a 21st Century pilgrimage to the far corners of my ancestral jewel-like island. I was, to quote from John O’Donohue, “an artist and pilgrim on the threshold” of my particular story, a journey within the heart of Ireland.