Interview with Marty Sturino

What do you read for pleasure?
A mixture of different genres and styles, depending on what I'm in the mood for and how much time I have to devote to them. I particularly enjoy the Commissario Guido Brunetti mysteries by Donna Leon, as well as the Inspector Hercule Poirot novels by Agatha Christi. Novels by Henry James are also high on my list, and the old Russian Masters like Tolstoy and Dostoevsky keep me coming back again and again.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I use a Samsung tablet, and I'm very happy with it. I do much of my reading at the end of the day in dim light, and the Samsung does an excellent job of allowing me to read without eye strain.
Describe your desk
My desk is clean. I keep things organized in files and folders on my PC with back ups, which I have had to rely on more than once. I like to think about writing and life for that matter as a project that I manage with an indented list, so a folder arrangement works best for me.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the American Mid-west, between Milwaukee and Chicago. I never write about it, so I guess it influenced me by focusing my attention on Europe. As I contrasted my life experiences with those I had growing up, I found the world a very fascinating place that I wanted to explore and experience.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing in airport lounges and restaurants while on layovers to make the time pass. It started with long letters to my children, then descriptions of the restaurants, or places I had visited, then progressed to fictional accounts of the people I had observed. At some point I realized that there were stories rattling around in my head that wanted to come out.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book is a work in progress. It is a romance that describes the thoughts and feelings of a business man who is enamored with a female colleague. He is crazy about her, but not sure about her feelings for him and is fearful of overstepping his bounds.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Several years in the Corporate environment taught me the benefits and disadvantages of teams, and the difficulties encountered when individuals with power get involved. I've had my fill of that life thanks, and I'm more than happy to succeed or fail on my own.
What is your writing process?
I've used a variation on the snowflake method for two books now, and believe that it instills discipline that is very important to have. Start with an idea, make it into a short paragraph, then an elevator summary. Sketch out characters, then make them grow and learn. Each should have a story and a real personality! Map out the strings that hold the story together and how the characters are affected by key events. Indented lists that describe scenes are critical, to keep the flow going and reducing re-writes...
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
No, I'm too old to remember that far back. As a kid I read Science fiction by Walter Heinlein. He did a great job of keeping me involved and turning pages. Later, I enjoyed the work of Kahil Gibron. His observations about life stuck with me. I also was impressed with Walter Mitty, the short story by James Thurber. I often say that I'm a "Walter Mitty" kind of guy.
Published 2013-10-05.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

A Romance in Bellagio
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 15,640. Language: American English. Published: October 27, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Short stories
(4.33 from 3 reviews)
A charming romantic adventure for a Walter Mitty kind of guy as he pursues the woman of his dreams. The wish it would, wish it could-be relationship was going nowhere without some help. His Administrative Assistant had just the solution, and the rest is romance.. And what better place than Bellagio, Italy?
The Autogrill Murder
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 77,140. Language: English. Published: October 5, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Police Procedural, Nonfiction » Language Instruction » Italian
Designed for the new Italian Language student, to introduce simple everyday phrases in an interesting context. In the story, extortion and money laundering lead to murder as a young Calabrian must choose between the old ways and risking his life to assist the police. Based on newspaper accounts of real events.
Letters from Calabria
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 26,420. Language: English. Published: September 30, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » By region
Not at all the traditional tourist guide, Letters from Calabria is a compilation of twenty stories, essays, and accounts of life in Calabria along the Ionian shore. Light hearted, poignant and full of humor and wisdom, but honest to the bone, Letters from Calabria will entertain as well as inform.