MEET STEVE BENTON
Born, raised and educated in Portland, Oregon, Steve Benton moved to California in his early twenties, intent on being a rock star. That didn't quite work out. So, he became a private investigator, picking up homicide overflow and conflict cases out of the Orange County Public Defender's Office.
Moving on to computers as they became popular and cost-effective, he worked as a private, graphical applications instructor, training the artists at WALT DISNEY IMAGINEERING, and gaining well-known clients such a JOSEPH BARBERA (Hanna-Barbera Studios) and JOHN HENCH (Executive VP, Disney).
After a couple of years, Steve left application instruction for a job at Nihon Kenko Zoushin Kenkyukai, colloquially known as NIKKEN. While there, he worked as the company's webmaster in the marketing department, and was also the speechwriter for CEO, TOSHIZO WATANABE. As a bonus, Steve got to travel to various foreign countries with Watanabe, conducting leading-edge multimedia presentations of his creation, in conjunction with Watanabe's speeches. This experience gave Steve a taste for travel, and to date he has visited nearly thirty countries on five continents, many countries on multiple occasions.
After leaving Nikken, Steve formed his own company in the telecom industry, based on a radio frequency computer application he invented, designed and developed. In his free time, he started writing a series of stories in his blog, based on his adventures in MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role-playing games). His younger daughter, at the time in college, suggested he actually write a novel instead of a blog. So, he did.
Within no time, he published his first novel: LIVES OF FUTURE-PAST. A few months later he completed its follow-up: LIVES OF LOST ANGELS. Then, after two more years, he finished the trilogy with LIVES OF THE PROVECTUS. He then went on to write seven short stories under contract for OMNI MAGAZINE, readable by clicking here.
While his first three novels were more geared toward adults, Steve decided to write a Young Adult series, based on a character from his trilogy—a girl named LILI GATTO. Sweet if managed, brutal if left unchecked, the girl is definitely unique and certainly fun to write, as well as read. Finishing the first two books in her series, he wrote and published HOW TO NOT DIE IN POST-APOCALYPTIC HOLLYWOOD, which returns the reader to the fractured, future Hollywood, California introduced in LIVES OF LOST ANGELS.
While he loves writing and reading sci-fi/fantasy, Steve decided to start developing a conspiratorial thriller series, using his investigative background and international travel experiences to add realism to the stories. In fact, he waited to finish the first novel (tentatively titled AUgmenTISM) until he had gone to Russia for a month, just so he could accurately describe locations, transportation, people and the food (which is quite tasty). His new works are set in the current era and have a good amount of ZEITGEIST, or Spirit of the Times, a term coined by 18th and 19thcentury German philosophers. Societal ills such as developmental disorders, PTSD and social media bullying also feature heavily in his stories. His latest protagonist, a psychiatrist and former Navy SEAL named Jax Brady is viewed by some beta readers as being the next in a new generation of special operatives/agents, addressing global dangers and trying to keep those he loves safe, in accordance with his own flawed set of rules. Being a combination of a psychiatrist and a SEAL is tough: Brady has a healer/destroyer complex, and is similar to a modern-day Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
Steve lives in Southern California, is married and has two daughters. He speaks, reads and writes Spanish fluently, and muddles though a few other languages with the help of small phrasebooks for travelers. An accomplished musician, he plays guitar, mandolin, piano, bass guitar, drums and a number of other instruments. He also holds a black belt in WTF Taekwondo, and is a prolific traveler, as well as an expert-level snow skier.