Thursday, June 16, 2016

The Hidden Reality: Interview with Stephen Martino

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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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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Thank you for this interview!  I’d like to know more about you as a person first.  What do you do when you’re not writing?
By day I’m a neurologist and practice in a 6-person private practice group. I also have the good fortune to run a 7 hospital system stroke center. Though the days are long, I enjoy my office patients and really appreciate making a difference in people’s lives. Plus, through the stroke centers, I’m able to create a multi-hospital system to treat stroke patients and deliver the most cutting edge and state-of-the-art care to all of them. Plus, as part of my job, I also conduct research and teach medical students and residents. If that weren’t enough, I have 5 kids at home who garner much of my free time. So when do I write? Good question. Thankfully I don’t need much sleep!

When did you start writing?
When it came to writing and most other aspects of my life, I was a late bloomer. In fact, I never started to write until my late twenties. Though I had aspired to create the next great American novel since my college days, the thought of creating an entire book seemed overwhelming.

When I began to dabble in the writing field, it was strictly non-fictional work for the local paper and hospital. I toyed with the idea of moving on to fiction for years. However, it was a coworker who eventually inspired me to take that final step. He would walk into my office with different ideas of what he thought would make an exciting book, or what he envisioned could create the next blockbuster movie. The more we talked on the subject, the more I wanted to create my own novel. After procrastinating long enough, I finally decided to jot down an outline for my first book and continued writing fiction ever since that time.

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?
Presenting at The Book Expo of America at the Java Center in NY has been the highlight of my publishing career. I’ve gone to this particular book expo multiple times and always hoped to be one of the published authors there signing my novel. Ironically, through hard work, persistence, and positive though (Thank you Robyn Byrne from The Secret) my dream came true. To this day, I am ecstatic my publisher provided me with such an incredible experience.

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?
It would definitely be somewhere on a Pacific island. The fantastic weather, clear air, and tropical breeze is perfect for writing. It’s also conducive for sleeping and drinking. However, I would plan to do a little writing when I am there.

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?
I’d probably catch up on some needed sleep. Though it sounds mundane, there seems to be too much to do with too little time to do it. Because a little extra shut-eye is the first thing to go when I’m busy, I would like to recoup on some of my needed sleeping time.

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?
My books really take the reader around the globe. I enjoy exploring different countries and even times through my writing. However, if I had to choose some completely different place to set a story, it may be in a different dimension, planet, or even realm of existence. However, for the time being, I’m going to stick to terrestrial locations.

Back to your present book, The Hidden Reality, how did you publish it?
An independent press known as Light Messages Publishing took on my work and brought it to print. As a previous novice to the publishing industry and writing business, finding Light Messages was a completely humbling task. I was rejected by hundreds of agents and publishers before eventually joining Light Messages. Honestly, the only time I was rejected this many times was when I was dating back in high school.

Before ever being published, I was signed on by an agent. It was this agent who eventually made contact with Light Messages and brought me into their family of successful writers. Sadly, a week before I closed the contract with Light Messages, my agent suddenly passed. However, I believe she is on the other side still rooting on my books for continued success.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?
Though I would like to travel, I’ve been able to virtually circle the globe from my own bedroom using my trusted computer. One day I would personally like to take the trip. However, I’m content to discover new places virtually until that day finally comes.

Why was writing The Hidden Reality so important to you?
My goal was to create a modern day allegoric Animal Farm in order to forewarn my readers of the possible future consequences we may face as a result of our current follies of today. As political tensions rise around the globe, the world plunges into economic debt, Europe delves deeper into chaos, and new scientific and medical achievements astound us by the day, the world in which we are living in today is rapidly changing. Unless we have the wisdom, humility, and compassion as we move forward intelligently, there will be unintended negative consequences for humanity’s future.

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?
Before writing The Hidden Reality, I conducted years of research into different scientific, medical, historical, philosophical, and political topics. In fact, I have shelves of books dedicated just to this novel. The goal was to create a finished product that was meant more for than just enjoyment. I really wanted to create a novel with substance like Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code or Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park. These books not only tell a fantastic story but they also make the reader think. So what I did in The Hidden Reality was incorporate certain pressing topics that effect our word today such the unprecedented world-wide economic debt, globalism, clash of East and West, and the rise of big government while combining it with some interesting subjects such as Ancient Greek military history, the concept of an Open Society, and futuristic scientific concepts.

Any final words?
Please visit me on my website:
The Hidden Reality can also be purchased on:
Barnes & Nobles:

1 comment:

  1. Great book! I really enjoyed reading this novel. I can't wait for the next one to come out!