Interview with Alex Markman

What do your fans mean to you?
Without fans, a writer's carrier is meaningless. Without recognition and appreciation, a writer is just a graphomaniac. I welcome bad and good comments from my readers: bad reviews help me improve my writings, and good ones let me know what is my target audience.
What are you working on next?
I am working on a thriller, based on factual material. Brenda, an eighteen years old girl was raped and photographed by her class mates. They uploaded these obscene pictures on social media. But Brenda was not a usual weak female victim. With exceptionally strong will and determination, she took the justice in her own hands. A few years later, what she did stunned all who was involved in her ordeal, including her investigator, the justice system, those who committed the crime, and their relatives and friends. The story revolves around importance of true justice, value of revenge, and compassion to victims of crimes.
Who are your favorite authors?
Writers of the past: Somerset Maugham, Eric Maria Remarque, Leo Tolstoy, O. Henry, Oscar Wilde, Hemingway. New authors: John Grisham, Nelson DeMille, Frederick Forsyth
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
A new day.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
With abundance of excellent marketing material produced for mediocre books, it is a very difficult process. Usually I read 'Look Inside' in Amazon, or excerpts in Smashwords. First few pages give me an idea of the book's quality.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Just word of mouth. Nothing else worked for me.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in the Soviet Union, and grew there during the Cold War era. Being published there was mission impossible for me: I couldn’t follow communists guidelines for literature. I was active in the dissident movement, and paid the price for it: 3 years in prison camp in Siberia, where temperature sometimes dropped to -56 Celsius. Luckily, after getting out of it, I got permission to emigrate. I lived 5 years in Israel, and later immigrated to Canada, where I live now. My first book was about my time in Siberia. It is much different from most works of this genre. It is not about me; it is rather about people and environment I lived in. This is my only non-fiction book. Since then I have published four novels and a dozen of short stories, all of them now available at Smashwords. My latest thriller is Contra-ODESSA, based on a true story.
Some of my fiction books were inspired by actual events in my life. There are heroes, or at least remarkable characters, around anyone of us. We often do not see anything interesting in them, because they are too close to us. Only in fiction, where you can put them in unusual circumstances, you can reveal the beauty and ugliness of their souls and minds.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Inspired by a true story, Contra-OSESSA is about the workings of superpowers secret services in Latin America in the 1960s. A team of KGB operatives in Argentina was hunting former Nazis who kept their money in Swiss banks. Under torture, the agents extorted from them their secret accounts numbers, money from which went to support the Communist movements in Latin America. The American spy network, eager to find the source of Communists funding, eventually traced the Soviets.
The validity and morality of their activity and political causes come into question. Contra-ODESSA conveys the dramatic and inevitably tragic lives of people drawn into the superpowers geopolitical struggle for global dominance. The novel’s plot is intense, but also aptly descriptive and thought-provoking as it invites you to examine the complexities of right and left political thought, the inner workings of the criminal mind, and the mysterious ways of love.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords gives me an opportunity to promote my books to a world wide audience. Thanks to the Premium catalogue, my books are on display of large international book retailers.
Published 2013-09-13.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Gift of Sight
By Alex Markman
Price: Free! Words: 26,850. Language: English. Published: December 9, 2013. Category: Fiction
A drama of a blind woman, whose sight was restored. The real world turned out to be not as beautiful as it was in her dark days.
Professional Ethics
By Alex Markman
Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 10,930. Language: Canadian English. Published: April 7, 2013. Category: Fiction
Misha, a young surgeon, was one of the few Jews living in the city N* in the Ukraine. Life seemed great until he, a victim of brawl, was brought to the police station, and beaten there by its chief. Later, doing emergency operation, Misha saved the chief’s life. When the he recovered, Misha told him about the beating in the jail. The following drama left Misha with the toughest choice of his life.
Twins in Sex
By Alex Markman
Price: $1.60 USD. Words: 15,460. Language: English. Published: August 26, 2012. Category: Fiction
A university student has a quickie with a pretty, but primitive, Mexican girl at a rural California fruit market. A few days later, to his astonishment, he stumbles on her at the university campus. She is stylish and elegant. This one turns out to be a twin! Nelson’s queer, erotically intense romance with the two sisters is saturated with mystery, fun, intrigue, passion and ridicule.
Mistakem Identity
By Alex Markman
Price: $1.00 USD. Words: 4,030. Language: English. Published: August 25, 2012. Category: Fiction
Based on a true story: an elderly woman believed all her life that she was German. She thought that her ancestors were somehow associated with the Nazi regime. It was a shock for her to discover her true identity, secrets of her childhood and destiny of her parents in the late 1930s.
Lies Reveal the Truth
By Alex Markman
Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 14,680. Language: English. Published: February 17, 2012. Category: Fiction
A gay posing as a movie producer causes commotion in the community of young straight couples. Before his sex orientation became known, he attracted gals, to the chagrin of their husbands and boyfriends. A male artist became his lover in desperate effort to get into movie business. Funny revelations of infidelity, and hilarious discovery of each other true personality profoundly changed their life.
Farewell to Past
By Alex Markman
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 16,540. Language: English. Published: October 30, 2011. Category: Fiction
After spending 10 years in a high security prison, Chris now a free man. Twenty eight years old, he admires the wonderful, unfamiliar world around him. His dilemma: should he square accounts with his enemy – what the criminal code of ethics dictates – or say farewell to past and begin a new life?
Payback for Revenge
By Alex Markman
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 64,430. Language: English. Published: September 4, 2011 by Asteroid Publishing. Category: Fiction
Payback for Revenge is a literary suspense saga of a passionate love affair, the murder of a young girl, and the horror of an international prostitution–slave ring. When a journalist, Chantal, leaves her opulent environment in New York to help Jovan, a Yugoslavian surgeon, hunt down the murderers of his daughter, the couple enters a dark and dangerous world of war, crime, and victimization.
Banality of Words
By Alex Markman
Price: $1.00 USD. Words: 18,670. Language: English. Published: August 5, 2011. Category: Fiction
Banality of Words is an urban story that reminds the reader of the transitory and fickle nature of love of the idle rich who prefer the frothy whipping cream on the cake rather than the cake itself. It’s a banal existence that scratches at the surface of life. “The deliberate construction of an illusion often lasts longer than the real thing,” says a character named Steve.