Steve Martini was born in San Francisco and grew up in the Bay Area and Southern California. An honors graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz, Martini's first career was in journalism. He worked as a newspaper reporter in Los Angeles and as a correspondent at the California State Capitol in Sacramento, specializing in legal issues, before gaining his law degree from the University of the Pacific's McGeorge School of Law.
In 1974 he entered private law practice in California where he appeared in both state and federal courts. During his law career he worked as a legislative representative for the State Bar of California, served as special counsel to the California Victims of Violent Crimes Program, and was an administrative law judge and supervising hearing officer.
In 1984, Martini turned his talents to fiction. Compelling Evidence, the novel that introduced attorney Paul Madriani, was published by Putnam in 1992. A national bestseller, that novel earned Martini a critical and popular following.
About This Biography
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Steve Martini talks with his publisher, Putnam, about writing and the Internet.
How did you begin writing?
I actually started writing as a journalist in 1969 for a newspaper in Los Angeles. At the time I was not a lawyer, but had just graduated from the University of California and intended to enter law school. I wanted a couple of years in the real world before plunging back into studies. What started as a brief diversion became an obsession. I found something almost therapeutic about composing at a keyboard. At the time it was an ancient manual typewriter. The news stories I wrote were converted into print for the paper on an old hot lead "Linotype" machine. I became hooked on writing, though at the time I had not ventured into fiction. All of my writing was on a daily deadline and intended for publication in the newspaper. I covered the courts and local government, and in 1970 I was transferred by the newspaper to the State Capital in Sacramento where I became a capital correspondent and ultimately bureau chief covering state government and the courts.
Did you intend to become an author, or do you have a specific reason or reasons for writing each book?
For many years I thought about writing fiction,...
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
- PW Starred Review
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