Welcome to Massimo Marino
Please tell us a little about yourself.
I’m Italian, and because even in Italy that means everything and nothing at all, I should say, I am Sicilian. I was born in Palermo, and as it happened with countless Sicilians, I left it, back in 1986. I lived more years abroad than in my home country, and I have changed in many and different ways than my old friends there. It is always a pleasure to go back, but it is now 6 long years since my last visit. Saudade? Maybe, a little.
I lived in Switzerland, France, and the United States. I am a scientist as a background, and have spent over 17 years in fundamental research. Most of my writing are then academic stuff, and I always wonder at how much Google is able to find about everyone. I am sure one has to Google oneself so not to forget too much about oneself… I use Google a lot to do research for my books.
Please tell us a little about your writing – for example genre, title, etc.
I’m writing a visionary, speculative sci-fi trilogy, “The Daimones Trilogy”. The first volume, “Daimones” is available both as paperback and ebook. The second volume, “Once Humans”, is in the last editing phases and should be hit the virtual and real shelves in a few weeks.
Daimones is part true life experience and uses real facts with an added “what if” to provide an explanation to current and past events. It developed into a post-apocalyptic novel with an ongoing mystery and suspense till the end, where all “dots connect”, especially with Dan’s past—the main character—and which leaves the reader, as one reviewer put it, “with lots to ponder”. It spurred by finding on the net an amazingly long series of inexplicable death of animals, where nothing can be pointed at as cause for the events and still most of those events share common aspects. Intriguing…what if…
Where can readers find your book?
Almost everywhere because of the extended distribution of Smashwords from their Premium Catalogue. So Amazon, Kobo, B&N, Foyles, Smashwords, and many many others.
Direct links for Amazon and Smashwords are:
How long have you been writing and what, if anything, made you choose the genre in which you write?
I wrote for many years, though it was academic stuff. Since my teen years I have written novelettes and short stories that ended up in a drawer every time and then lost and destroyed. It was a solo pleaure, very few have ever read those. Then, an unexpected turn in my life made for me to join a beta-reader community and the feedback has been phenomenal.
Sci-fi was a big hit at home when I was a kid. Had both father and older brother deep into that genre. I couldn’t avoid it.
Who or what are your inspirations/influences?
I grew up reading sci-fi, all the big names, from Isaac Asimov to Ray Bradbury, Ursula Le Guin, Frank Herbert, Larry Niven, Robert Heinlein, to name just a few and then other genres too, Tolkien, Stephen King, Tom Clancy and others. Italian authors, too, like Svevo, Calvino, Sciascia, and also Greek mythology authors, the ones I used to hate at school and that are instead fantastic writers and authors. We live with myths daily, even if we do not realize it.
Can you name a positive experience from your writing and a negative one? It is the same experience for both; sometimes you cannot control what your characters do and say. I followed lessons on creative writing from Brandon Sanderson at BYU online, and in one of those he described the two extremes of writing styles. One goes through pre-organizing everything, the entire plot, from the beginning to the end, the various conflicts, each chapter, everything. And then fills up the gaps, more and more till the manuscript is “completed”. At the opposite sit those writer called “gardeners”. These ones plant the seed of the story, and then the story grows, evolves, take unexpected turns, with the writer sometimes unable to tell how it will end, or what will happen if certain events were to occur.
I found myself more into this last tail of the “writers distribution curve”. I’ve watched Daimones in my mind, heard characters discussing, and reacting to what happened to them as in a movie. Sometimes I was unable to write as fast as the images flow I witnessed and I had to ask them to rewind and let me watch again.
The story and the characters had a life of their own, and I became the first reader of the novel.
With the rise of e-books do you still publish in print as well? Is this medium important and why?
I will always bring novels to print. Longer books need to be in print too. Besides, bookstores are not yet equipped to carry ebooks and it is always nice to see one owns work on the shelves. For example, I’ve recently done a Reading in a bookstore in Geneva. That would have not happened if the book was not in print as well.
Do you listen to music or watch TV whilst you write?
At times I listen to music, piano concertos. I love Rachmaninov ones.
Books are important, why is this the case? What can a book provide that say a video game cannot?
A good story doesn’t show everything to readers. It brings them in, makes them use their own experience and path of live to imagine and recreate the vision the writer had in the first place. That vision is different for every reader. A book is always an active process, readers’ mind and imagination have important roles. A video game is passive compared to a book. Everything is there, and in order to enjoy better the experience the player has to let go his own imagination because it interferes with the gaming experience or slows down actions and reactions. The more hypnotized a player is, and absorbing passively everything the better he can be at the game.
With a book the opposite happens, the more the reader contributes to the reading, the more enjoyable the story becomes and grows into the reader.
Can you give us a silly fact about yourself?
I believe I can become a writer.
“Once Humans” Vol.2 of the “Daimones Trilogy”
The dogs had been slaughtered. Not a quick death either…no pity or mercy for their suffering. They did not waste a bullet for our companions; a large machete-like blade had slashed through their bodies. The guts of the male left a trace as he tried to drag himself away from the killing rage. A barbaric act, and probably a message for us. I looked at Laura with a muted question.
“I wanted you to see the place as we found it,” Laura said. “I left the two guys here, as a precaution, but instructed them not to touch anything.”
Laura gestured to our escort and the group scattered around the perimeter.
The barn was open and many animals were missing. Those still there—and their entrails—covered the floor. The walls were splattered, giving the impression concrete bled, too. A stench of gas and death assailed me.
The “Daimones Trilogy”
2012 PRG Reviewer’s Choice Award Winner in Science Fiction
2013 Hall of Fame – Best in Science Fiction, Quality Reads UK Book Club
2013 PRG Reviewer’s Choice Award Winner in Science Fiction Series
2014 Finalist – Science Fiction – Indie Excellence Awards L.A.
2014 Award Winner – Science Fiction Honorable Mention – Readers’ Favorite Annual Awards