GENEVA — The life of an artist can take on many forms.
There are many ways to express thoughts and feelings; art has become one of the most valued incarnations of cultural learning and understanding. The reasoning for becoming an artist is just as distinguished.
Dick Falzoi is a local artist who grew up in the small, Southern Tier town of Arkport. His life has taken him from the Marine Corps to a freelance artist to short-story writer to musician to, most recently, novelist.
Falzoi’s book, “Beyond the Far Mountain, An Odyssey of Adventure, Survival, and Romance” is a pop-novel filled with humor and romance, along with a touch of spiritual and philosophical ideas. The book, which was published by Sunstone Press, has been available on Amazon since June 1.
The tale is set in Jericho, a small coal-mining town in West Virginia, in the late 1800s. The story follows Jonas McNabb, who daringly tries to prove his innocence and return to his love, Laura Becker.
McNabb and his profoundly intuitive wolf/dog, Savage, must fight to survive during a ferocious winter in the Appalachian Mountains. They encounter many struggles on the way, as well as find much needed help from a peculiar mountain man named Jebediah.
Falzoi, who now lives on High Street in Geneva, graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a master of fine arts degree after spending four years in the Marines. He was a successful commercial-portrait artist in the Geneva area for 15 years.
He retired about six years ago after becoming what he described as “outdated” due to the advancing technologies of computer enhancement.
“I traded in my paintbrush for the typewriter,” Falzoi said. “It was a complete latitudinal shift for me as an artist. Writing can lift the soul. It has become a viable option and outlet for me.”
Falzoi says his writing endeavor has little to do with making money.
“I mainly wrote the book for my family legacy, and to be the first one in my family to ever write a book,” Falzoi said. “I wanted to write something entertaining that would be enjoyable for young adults to read.”
Falzoi said he has two other works that will be completed soon:
• “Empty Canvas” is the story of an artist who loses his wife and his creativity, but finds inspiration from a talented little girl.
• “Appalled” is about a teenager who discovers he has the power to slow down time with his mind, and must decide whether to use this gift for good or a life of crime.
Falzoi said no matter what artistic avenue he chooses, he makes sure to incorporate a little part of himself into every single piece he creates, including “Beyond the Far Mountain.”
“I definitely got a lot of ‘me’ in my book,” he said.