Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Interview with William R. Leibowitz: 'I find it incomprehensible that no major disease has been cured in over 50 years'



William R. Leibowitz has been practicing entertainment/media law in New York City for a number of years.  He has represented numerous renowned recording artists, songwriters, producers and many of the leading record companies, talent managers, merchandisers and other notable entertainment businesses.  At one point, he was the Chief Operating Officer/General Counsel for the Sanctuary Group of Companies, a U.K. public company that was the largest ‘indie’ music company in the world (prior to its acquisition by the Universal Music Group). 

William has a Bachelor of Science degree from New York University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and a law degree from Columbia University.  He lives in the village of Quogue, New York with his wife, Alexandria, and dog, George. 

William wrote Miracle Man because of its humanistic and spiritual messages and because he feels that in our current times – when meritless celebrity has eclipsed accomplishment and the only heroes are those based on comic books, the world needs a real hero –and that, of course, is Robert James Austin, the protagonist in Miracle Man. Miracle Man won Best Thriller in the National Pacific Book Awards.
For More Information

About the Book:

REVERED   REVILED    REMARKABLE

The victim of an unspeakable crime, an infant rises to become a new type of superhero. 

Unlike any that have come before him, he is not a fanciful creation of animators, he is real. 

So begins the saga of Robert James Austin, the greatest genius in human history.  But where did his extraordinary intelligence come from?

As agents of corporate greed vie with rabid anti-Western radicals to destroy him, an obsessive government leader launches a bizarre covert mission to exploit his intellect.  Yet Austin’s greatest fear is not of this world.

Aided by two exceptional women, one of whom will become his unlikely lover, Austin struggles against abandonment and betrayal.  But the forces that oppose him are more powerful than even he can understand. 

For More Information



Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

In writing Miracle Man, I wanted to tell a story about a real hero –not a celebrity.  The protagonist in Miracle Man, Robert James Austin, is a person who acts on important human values and uses his extraordinary gifts selflessly.  He doesn’t want adulation.  He doesn’t want his picture to be on magazine covers and T-Shirts.  He refuses to accept or pursue celebrity status.  An individual  like this can be inspirational.  Too much time and attention is heaped upon meritless celebrities who contribute nothing to society and have no talent other than the ability to garner media attention.  I believe that this undermines the fabric of our society and sets a terrible example for today’s young people.  We need a real modern day believable super- hero, who can be inspirational—and Miracle Man’s Robert James Austin is that person!   Additionally, I wanted Miracle Man to be the vehicle within which I could convey, in an entertainment context, certain spiritual and humanistic messages that are important to me.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

Because of the plot line in Miracle Man, I had to spend a great deal of time doing extensive research in two areas:  (1) the nature of human intelligence (particularly genius), and (2) diseases, treatments, attempted cures –and the medical/scientific methodology relevant to formulating cures.  Regarding #1 – I researched the lives of actual geniuses so that I could understand how genius manifests itself at various ages –and the behaviors often attendant to genius.  Because the protagonist in Miracle Man, Robert James Austin, has intelligence that is a high multiple of any of the actual known geniuses, I then extrapolated from my research and ‘pumped up’ various things about Austin so as to reflect his unique level of intelligence.  So while I highly magnified elements of Austin’s behavior and thought processes—they are grounded in documented realities.  Regarding the medical/scientific aspects of the book, I didn’t want to ask the reader to take giant leaps of faith when reading Miracle Man, so I knew that in order for the story to be credible, it had to have a plausible scientific foundation for the way in which Austin invented cures and the way that the cures worked.  At the same time, however, I was mindful that I had to minimize the science so that I didn’t bore the reader.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

After the well-known novelist, James S. Thayer, edited Miracle Man – I went ahead and self-published it in late January of this year.  I did that because from the book lawyers I spoke to and everything I read in the press—I felt that the financial and marketing opportunities offered by traditional book publishers for new novelists had become a shadow of what they once were.

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

What surprised me –and what was most gratifying – was when terrific reviews began to come in on Miracle Man.  Until I began to see that people I didn’t know were reading and enjoying the book – I didn’t really feel like I was an author.  But when the first very positive review came in on Amazon, I felt that all of my hard work was validated –it was very uplifting and emotional for me.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

Many readers have contacted me requesting a sequel to Miracle Man.  In fact, the ending of the book hints at more to come.  I’ve begun to sketch out the plot lines for the sequel and I can tell you that readers will be very surprised when they see what unfolds in book #2.

Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online?

While I’m active on Facebook and Linkedin –I’m a bit addicted to the Associated Press site.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

Like Miracle Man’s Robert James Austin –I find it incomprehensible that virtually no major disease has been cured in over 50 years.  How can that be the case when so much money has been spent over the decades on research?  Simply put, there’s a lot more money to be made in treating symptoms than there is in curing diseases.  That’s why even the common cold hasn’t been cured –a cure would eliminate tens of billions of dollars of revenue for Big Pharma each year.  Austin realized that Big Pharma has no interest in curing diseases.  It just wants to keep selling expensive symptom treatments –and as we know, many people are on ‘medication maintenance programs’ for years.  Austin wanted to change all of that –and that’s why be became Big Pharma’s worst nightmare.
  
Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

Yes –but Robert James Austin’s own words say it best in summing up one of the main humanistic messages that I wanted to convey in Miracle Man:  “Human life is never expendable.  The implications of its loss cannot be predicted no matter how humble its origins or unlikely its promise.”