About Martin Golan
M artin Golan’s first novel, My Wife’s Last Lover, was published to much acclaim, and spent over a year as No. 1 on Amazon’s best-seller list for the area of New Jersey in which he lives. He followed up with Where Things Are When You Lose Them, a collection of short stories that one reviewer called “a dozen short but rich literary gems.” A new novel, about a man convinced his wife is the alluring but dangerous Lilith of biblical legend, is working its way through the publishing pipeline. In addition, a book of poetry is scheduled to be published early next year.
Martin’s poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in many magazines, among them highly regarded publications such as The Pedestal Magazine, The Literary Review, Poet Lore, Fiction Warehouse and Bitterroot, where as associate editor he worked closely with legendary poet and mystic Menke Katz. He earned a master’s degree in creative writing from the City College of New York (when the faculty included Kurt Vonnegut, Joseph Heller, and Anthony Burgess) and studied fiction writing with the novelist Leslie Epstein and poetry with poet William Packard, founder of the influential poetry magazine New York Quarterly.
He’s worked primarily as a journalist, a reporter, editor, and feature writer at daily newspapers, where his bylined stories appeared daily, and lastly as a senior editor at Reuters in New York City. He also finds time to be a private writing coach for poetry, fiction, and memoir. He lives with his wife, a psychologist, in the New Jersey town where his novels and many short stories take place, and serves on the town’s Environmental Commission along with working with Habitat for Humanity helping rebuild houses in the nearby depressed city of Paterson.
He is also a dreadful blues harmonica player, who loves to play along with his musical hero Bob Dylan (please don’t let him know the applause isn’t for him).
Although he’s studied with famous writers, tutored others in poetry, fiction, and memoir, been a reporter and editor for a large international news organization, and held odd jobs — from gas station attendant to ice-cream truck driver — Martin says he learned the most about writing from driving a taxi in New York City, which he did in college and between newspaper jobs. (“Intimacy,” in Where Things Are When You Lose Them, appears to have been inspired by this one-time job.)
He explains: “A hundred dramas a night are performed before you; you hear real dialogue acted out as if on a stage (albeit behind you, not in front); you watch couples fall in – and out – of love; you hear endless tales of heartbreak, loss, and betrayal; you see lonely men and women pouring their hearts out to you, about lovers and drugs and the death of their dreams, in language as rich and varied as their lives, all before a glittering city that you constantly see with new eyes and which, like the passengers themselves, will never reveal all its secrets.”