Please welcome my guest, Rudy A. Mazzocchi, author of the controversial debut thriller, Equity of Evil, just released by Twilight Times Books. Mazzocchi reveals what’s inside the mind of the medical thriller author and discusses various aspects of his novel, among them his hero, his villain, and the challenges he faced during the creative process.
Rudy is best known as a medical device and biotechnology entrepreneur, inventor, and angel investor, with a history of starting new technology ventures
throughout the U.S. and Europe. He’s been privileged to have the opportunity to see the newest innovations in healthcare and work with some of the most brilliant researchers, scientists and physicians in the industry.
Authoring more than 50 patents, he has helped pioneer new companies involved in cardiology, oncology, orthopedics, neurosurgery and even embryonic stem-cell development. Through these efforts, he has become the recipient of many technology and business awards, including the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in Healthcare and the Businessman of the Year Award.
Combining these experiences and opportunities, with thousands of hours of travel and long evenings in hotel rooms, he found the initiative to start writing a collection of medical thrillers based on true events, the first of which is entitled Equity of Evil.
Congratulations on the release of your medical thriller, Equity of Evil! Tell us, what’s inside the mind of a medical thriller author?
I believe most (if not all) authors of medical thrillers have a direct connection to the medical or healthcare industry, either as a physician, researcher, caregiver or industry expert. A medical thriller author needs to capture all the necessary literary components of a successful novel, in addition to those of a suspenseful thriller, AND also include the correct medical terminology and technology description in such a way that the layman can seamlessly understand. The compelling thing about writing medical thrillers is that we have an opportunity to educate readers about real technologies that potentially impact each and every one of us. It’s a theme that every reader could potentially relate to.
Equity of Evil deals with the controversial subjects of abortion and genetic engineering. During the creation of this novel, were you worried about what the general reader’s response might be?
It is important for readers to understand that I made a substantial effort to not take either a Pro-Life or Pro-Choice position when using the abortion theme as a backdrop of this story. Neutrality on such a controversial topic is very difficult, but I believe that regardless of your political or moral position, the reader will find support in the words and actions of the book’s characters for whatever perspective they might have. However, sometimes a novel comes along that forces us to face the brutal reality of our world. If Equity of Evil produces a response from readers on these topics whom otherwise may have never given any thought about them, then I’ll consider myself a successful writer no matter how many books are sold!
Tell us about your protagonist, Roman Citrano. Share with us something about him that readers won’t be able to resist.
Roman is one of those rare individuals who we may all know… successful, charismatic, willing to take risks that only others talk about, but one that has also experienced as many failures as successes. Divorced many times, but always dating the woman who seems unapproachable, he gives the impression of a womanizer, but shows his embarrassment of being a man when he realizes that his new business venture has placed many of them in harm’s way. As many of us often do, he starts out with the best intentions, only to become a victim of his own ambition and self-determination. He’s human… very human.
It isn’t fair to leave the villain behind. Tell us something about Professor Marcus Levine that readers will love to hate.
Although they share a common desire to be successful, Professor Levine is just the opposite of Roman Citrano. He believes he’s untouchable, with an ego and insatiable desire for wealth that grows with each incremental step of his conniving plan. He’s a manipulative, lying, inhumane scientist who treats women as he does the animals in his research laboratory. Readers will find it easy to hate him!
Who is your favorite character in the book? Why?
Although I can personally relate to Roman, my main character, I favour Andrea who is not only dedicated to the field of medicine, but very passionate about providing care for her young patients. She’s a strong, independent woman who becomes an unfortunate victim, whose fight for survival turns into a search for justice and revenge.
Several scenes in your story are particularly violent against women. Were these scenes difficult to write?
Yes, there are several violent scenes in the story that were difficult to write, but this was not designed to focus on the atrocities against women, but the atrocities of our society. Many of these scenes were taken from reported incidences, in real environments, that unfortunately occur with real people all too often. Yes, they’re difficult to write about, but even more difficult to accept that they are a part of the dark side of our world.
What did you find most challenging, the scientific details of the story or the technical aspects of novel writing? Did you stumble along the way?
I’ve been living the scientific details of this story for a long time, so this is an easy one. I had to learn the basics of writing as I wrote this original manuscript. My first editor (Gerry Mills) had to school me on the fundamentals of point-of-view (POV), transitions, some basic grammar, and as I hate to admit it, often times… punctuation. I frequently stumbled, tripped, and fell along the way.
How long did it take you to write the novel and how did you find the time to sit and write between your demanding job and all the travelling that you do?
It took approximately a year to research and write the initial manuscript. I became obsessed with writing during every flight (including long trans-Pacific and trans-Atlantic flights), during long evenings in hundreds of hotel rooms, and during early morning and late nights over the weekend. Don’t all writers do this?
What do you want readers to get from Equity of Evil?
There are several new scientific innovations and breakthroughs that will impact our lives in the near future, and many more that will affect the next generation. We will have no choice about their existence… they’ll be here if we like it or not. Therefore, we all need to be aware of them and start to think about how society is going to accept and manage them. Equity of Evil touches on many of these medical and scientific innovations that are on the cusp of shaking up public and political views in the major nations of the world. I’m hopeful that this novel (and those underway) will help open up people’s willingness to process such new revelations that will surely disrupt our current moral and ethical opinions.
I hear you’re working on a second medical thriller. When will that one come out?
My second manuscript is well underway in hopes of releasing it near the end of the year. My goal is to make this the second of a trilogy that we might refer to as “The EQUITY Series.” It will carry a similar theme, but focus on a technology (which currently exists) that can allow us to re-wire the brain… a process known as “neuroplasticity.” Can you imagine a world in which we can eliminate fear, restore memories, create artificial desires and dislikes, or even eliminate pain?
Is there anything else you’d like to share with my readers?
I just sincerely hope that my readers take away something positive from this story, while learning a little more about the advancement of medical technologies that many others don’t want to admit even could exist.
Read an excerpt of Equity of Evil:
Equity of Evil is currently up at Barnes and Noble at the discounted price of $2.99:
Equity of Evil is also up at OmniLit and available in ePub, PDF, mobi and prc for $2.99:
Also on Amazon Kindle:
Note: the $2.99 price will be in effect until March 10th (midnight EST), then Equity of Evil will be available for the discounted price of $3.48 via eBook distributors and the Twilight Times Books website until the end of March.