People often ask what piqued my interest in writing fiction. It was when I began inking press releases at The Pentagon. All kidding aside (mostly), all forms of writing, especially creative writing, are my greatest passions.
The gift for writing was first noticed by an 8th grade English teacher, Mrs. Ellis. An essay I had written about disliking my mother’s homemade meatballs had caught her attention. Yes, I really went there! I didn’t know it at the time, but I had written my first piece of satire. When I learned my teacher called my parents inviting them to read the meatball essay at Memorial Junior High, I was horrified. Mrs. Ellis thought it would please me to be recognized. But this eleven year-old was panicked, and I envisioned life would end at the classroom bulletin board where my satire was displayed. Fortunately I had parents who recognized a budding sense of humor.
Later while in high school, I started writing poetry, with one of my poems being selected for a book of Florida poetry. At Valencia Community College, in Orlando, I wrote for the campus newsmagazine. My first expose` centered on a day-visit to the nudist camp at Cypress Cove, in Kissimmee. This fledgling writer, barely 18-years old, discovered the bare necessities of life that day. As a broadcast major at Central Florida, I had my first real exposure to the world of journalism where the art of writing hard news and feature stories took hold of me. I also minored in Film making at UCF, and produced several awkward movie shorts. Thankfully the internet had yet to be invented where films go on to live in embarrassing perpetuity.
Following graduation I was commissioned an officer in the United States Air Force. As a Public Affairs Officer, and for the next twenty years, I wrote all forms of corporate communication, to include feature stories, hard news stories, speeches, and press releases. The opportunities for writing were abundant, and I even had the privilege to ghost-write for many high-level military officers, including two Chairmen Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff.
My time at the Pentagon, and subsequent time as the Press Officer at Central Command (CENTCOM), in Tampa, Florida, had me thinking about what I wanted to do following military service. Having been an AFROTC professor during two previous assignments—-at the University of South Florida, and Oregon State University—-influenced my decision to go into teaching.
My father was a career Air Force sergeant and, combined with my 20-year career, I had traveled a large part of my life to many parts of the world. Forty-nine states, France, Germany, Iceland, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, just to name a few places.
It was while teaching Social Studies in Manatee County that I decided to combine my love for writing and my love of history. The result was my first novel, Egmont Passage: Tale Of The Seventh Mystery. The book, part of a trilogy, is a history-mystery involving three lost middle schoolers who must find their way back from Florida’s past.
A number of years have come and gone since my military and teaching days. But what remains with me still today, besides wonderful memories of colleagues and former students, is the love of story telling in all forms. Unlike numbers, words have always been my friend, and I call upon them often. And for the record, I miss my mother’s Italian meatballs.
Nino Fabiano has written five novels, and is contemplating his sixth. He also produced and directed several documentary videos. He is a member of the Manatee Chamber of Commerce, the American Legion, and the Florida Writers Association. Nino lives on a small farm in north Manatee County, Florida, with his wife Lori, who is also a retired Manatee County educator. They have six children, three dogs (Indiana Jones, Meriwether Lewis, and Amelia Earhart), 4 goats, 1 rabbit, 6 ducks and an unknown amount of chickens. Many of the residents on the Chicken Ranch are rescue animals.