Friday, May 27, 2016

Straight From the Mouth of Stephen Martino, author of 'The Hidden Reality'

Stephen Martino is neurologist practicing in New Jersey. Though not separating conjoined twins like Dr. Ben Carson, he is part of an active medical practice and is currently participating in concussion research and inventing new medical products. When he is not working, he can be found with his five children doing homework or cheering them on at a soccer field, basketball court, or dance recital. Martino is a member of the Knights of Columbus, a Cub Scout den leader and is an active public speaker, helping to provide stroke education to the local community, EMS squads and healthcare professionals.

His latest book is the science fiction/political thriller, The Hidden Reality.
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About the Book:

In the year 2084, the brilliant inventor, Alex Pella, finds himself at a precarious crossroad between the pursuit of justice and preservation of his own sanity. While attempting to undermine an international New World Order government created by the financial juggernaut known as The New
Reality, he must also face the hidden truths about his own genetic heritage that are slowly destroying him. After receiving an ambiguous message sent from a former New Reality executive who died 2 years prior, Alex learns that the only possible means to confront this New World Order is to defeat a long-forgotten enemy almost 2500 years old.

THE HIDDEN REALITY is the second stand-alone novel in a trilogy starring Alex Pella, created by New Jersey-based neurologist and entrepreneur Stephen Martino. With his fusion of history, politics, and science fiction, Martino joins such masters of the thriller genre as Dan Brown, James Rollins, and Michael Crichton.

Martino’s villain is a corporation run by a cadre of ruthless international bankers known as The New Reality. Directed by the most corrupt and morally unscrupulous of the bunch, Myra Keres, the company has economically seized control of the world’s governments and the population’s personal freedoms in the process. In order to save humanity from this despot ruler and the unwonted atrocities to which she plans to perpetuate on the world, Alex Pella must infiltrate the company and face an enemy that has unknowingly haunted both him and history for almost 2500 years.

Martino says he wrote THE HIDDEN REALITY more than just to entertain the reader. He wanted to create a modern day Orwellian ANIMAL FARM to allegorically forewarn his readers of a possible dystopia future that awaits all of mankind if humanity continues to proceed down its path of self-destruction.

In THE HIDDEN REALITY, Martino has included such hot-button contemporary topics as genetic cloning, unprecedented economic debt, the rise of big government, and the threat of a New World Order run by the economic elite, while bringing the reader back almost 2500 years into the past when the ancient city state nation known as Greece fought the mighty Persian Empire for world domination.

All of these elements, Martino maintains, separate his book from the pack. He calls THE HIDDEN REALITY “issue-oriented fiction. There are real concerns facing society today that threaten both the sovereignty and prosperity of our future generations. Though fictional, my novel addresses some of these issues and predicts the potential consequences we face as a nation and the world if they are not properly addressed today.”

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Thanks for letting us interrogate you!  Can you give us a go-for-the-gut answer as to why you wanted to be an author?

Doesn’t everyone have that one great American novel in them just waiting to be written? By nature, we are all dreamers. Some, like myself, tend to daydream more in class than others. However, storytelling is simply in our genes. It’s how history was once passed from one generation to the next, and how we in the modern world keep ourselves entertained.

I’ve wanted to write a novel for well over 20 years. However, excuses more than action filled my mind for those many years. There were so many topics which I wanted to write about but too many reasons not to sit down and actually start typing. Finally, the day came where the excuses ended, and I wrote my first outline for a novel. Now onto my third book, I look forward to a long writing career.

Tell us (we won’t tell promise!) is it all it’s cracked up to be?  I mean what are the perks and what are the demands?

Writing and publishing novels have definitely opened up some exciting doors for me. I’ve gotten to promote my book at the largest book expo in the country at the Java Center in NYC. I’ve also had the pleasure of meeting some real interesting people and a hosting book signings where people actually come to meet me.
All success has been tempered by the arduous task of actually promoting my novel. This undertaking has proven to be the most time consuming and frustrating aspect of being an author. The real fun is in writing the novel and directly speaking to my readers about it. However, continually promoting myself and my novels on social media and through the world-wide web can be tedious, time consuming, and humbling all at once.

Which route did you take – traditional or self-published – and can you give us the nitty gritty low down on what’s that like?

Those that wish to be published need to learn humility. In fact, I’ve never been so rejected since I was on the dating scene back in high school. I felt as if I could wallpaper my entire house with all the rejection letters from different agents and publicist. However, rejection made my writing better and my pitch more powerful. After a litany of failures for a year and a half, I had many offers from publishers come in all at once. I’m not sure if it my persistence or simply my naiveté that kept me going. In the end, I had the great pleasure of becoming a member of the Light Messages Publishing family of authors.

What’s the snarkiest thing you can say about the publishing industry?

Don’t quit your day job. If you are waiting for that high paying contract just to appear out of nowhere, you are in for a big surprise. Publishing is a difficult field to enter. I found it even more difficult do to the fact that I’m not a writer by trade. My science and medicine background offered me little in the realm of fictional publishing. Maybe if I wrote a nonfiction novel my reception might not have been so cold. However, my combination of naivety and persistence in the end brought my first novel to print.

Tell us for real what your family feels about you spending so much time getting your book written, polished, edited, formatted, published, what have you?

I write in the wee hours of the morning before anyone in my household even has arisen. Most of my family didn’t even know I wrote a novel until I had my first contract in hand. Fortunately, my need for little sleep and joy of writing in the dark does not interfere with my job or responsibilities at home. Thank God it doesn’t, or I would have come home to an empty desk and divorce papers.

What was the craziest or insane thing that happened to you in the book publishing process?

Before being published by Light Messages, I had contracts with 3 different companies for my novel. However, each folded, leaving me looking for that next publishing agency. Fortunately, Light Messages is still thriving, any my curse did not bring their demise.

How about the social networks?  Which ones do you believe help and which ones do you wish you could avoid?

It really is difficult to say which one works the best. I attempt to stay up to date with Twitter, Hootsuite, Goodreads, Quora, Facebook, Reddit, and Pinterest. It is the most effective and convenient method to promote a novel. I can essentially tour the world from the confines of my own bedroom, and do it myself without having to hire a publicist or buying plane tickets.

Book sales.  Don’t you just love them (or lack of?)?  How are you making the sales happen for you?

Persistence make book sales. The real goal is to find your audience and promote your novel directly to them. Because my current book, The Hidden Reality, has science fiction, political, and historical elements, I attempt to seek out an audience that would be most apt to read it.

What is one thing you’d like to jump on the rooftop and scream about?

Why doesn’t anybody return my emails! I am so anal retentive about responding to requests and questions. However, much of the correspondence I sent out are never returned or are grossly tardy in response. Whether the email is to a newspaper, radio station, blog, bookstore, member of my social network or even at times a friend, it can take a lifetime, if at all, to hear back from them.

Okay, too much sugar for you today!  Here’s a nice cup of Chamomile tea and come on over and sit under the cabana and watch the waves roll in.  Now…can you tell us what you love about being a published author and how all those things above doesn’t matter because it’s all part of the whole scheme of things and you wouldn’t have it any other way?

There is a certain pride I take in being a published author. I am not trained in the literary field at all, and to become an Amazon bestselling author with my first novel made it all worthwhile. Plus, when I started writing, I went totally out of my comfort zone and entered a field to which I had no training and little knowledge. What I’ve learned is that I’m not growing as a person if I’m not extending my comfort zone on a daily basis. I no longer let this little mental construct confine me any longer. The little voice inside that says No You Can’t has turned into a stronger voice that asks Why Not?

1 comment:

Saint Catherine said...

This is a fantastic read! I highly recommend it.