Dreaming in Starlight (CTU Publishing Group, 2017) – Out Now in print & Kindle on Amazon.
Dreaming in Starlight is a prose collection of fictional letters from a 26-year-old Southern American named Jeremiah John Watts, who, fleeing a chaotic world he couldn’t understand, sought solace in the solitude of deep, mountainous woods. Four months later, Jeremiah is dead, killed by the biggest forest fire the region has seen in fifty years. All that remains is a box of letters written to the ghosts of his past, letters that, gradually, build a portrait of a life filled with mistakes, heartbreak, sickness, and regret, as well as love, faith, hope and perseverance. But was the fire an act of God, a desperate suicide, or something else entirely?
Dreaming in Starlight deals primarily with the nature of the past and how it defines us, and questions whether or not we ever truly leave it behind, and includes themes of mental illness, addiction, spirituality and the ultimate loneliness of the human condition, alongside a chaos of juxtapositions, such as love vs obsession and time vs truth.
“Upon reading Dreaming in Starlight I was let into a world of sheer brilliance. Elliott may only be 23 years old but his genius precedes him and he is, in my opinion, one of the brightest burning stars in the literary world. The people JJ mentions in these letters have a parallel to the alienated and confused dreamers, addicts and lost souls found in the work of the likes of Denis Johnson and William Burroughs, but JJ’s larger-than-life sentimentality as his past leaks out of his heart and onto the page puts this collection in some new sphere of perception equally brilliant but entirely its own.
This is one super debut (unparalleled I’d say compared to other debuts in the contemporary literary world). Elliott is more than a writer to keep an eye on. With the talent and inventiveness in this debut, it shouldn’t be long until he finds you. I’d say he has one of the brightest futures in literature.” – Heath Brougher, author of A Curmudgeon is Born, Digging for Fire and Your Noisy Eyes
“special and poignant . . . spellbinding descriptions . . . so much beauty in its brevity . . . a book that I found myself wishing would never end . . . Elliott’s prose is carefully constructed, yet exceedingly natural; unique, yet all-encompassing; and small, yet so large in scope.” – Tamara Drazic, Founder/Editor-in-Chief, Spinebind Magazine
“puts into words what is manifestly mystical. Shadows of Augustine’s Confessions, Ferlinghetti’s Coney Island of the Mind and David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest grace its pages. And, as Wallace said about his novel’s resolution, Dreaming’s exists, ‘but just past the last page.'” – Acclaimed photographer J. Ray Paradiso