About the Book
“Look around,” the drill sergeant said. “In a few years, or even a few months, several of you will be dead. Some of you will be severely wounded or so badly mutilated that your own mother can’t stand the sight of you. And for the real unlucky ones, you will come home so emotionally disfigured that you wish you had died over there.”
It was Week 7 of basic training . . . eighteen years old and I was preparing myself to die.
They say the Army makes a man out of you, but for eighteen-year-old SPC Michael Anthony, this fabled rite of passage is instead a dark and dangerous journey. After obtaining his parents’ approval to enlist at seventeen, Anthony begins this journey with an unshakeable faith in the military based on his family’s long tradition of service. But when he finds himself in a medical unit of misfits as lost as he is, Anthony not only witnesses firsthand the unspeakable horror of war, he experiences the undeniable misconduct of the military. Everything he’s ever believed in dissolves, forcing Anthony to rethink his ideals and ultimately risk his career—and his freedom—to challenge the military that once commanded his loyalty.
This searing memoir chronicles the experiences that change one young soldier forever. A seasoned veteran before the age of twenty-one, he faces the truth about the war—and himself—in this shocking and unprecedented eyewitness account.
Hi Michael Anthony
Welcome to Paperback Writer.
Q: Would you share with us how you came up with the idea for your book?
A: Well, in Iraq, we had all joked around about writing about some of the absurd
things that were going on, but it wasn’t until coming home that I really focused
on writing my book; “Mass Casualties: A Young Medic’s True Story of Death,
Deception, and Dishonor in Iraq.”
Q: Was it a light bulb moment or something that you thought about for a very long
A: It kind of was a light bulb moment. I was on a date with this girl, and she
started telling me about this article she had read in a newspaper. She tells me
how the article was about a soldier who was in Iraq, and what an American Hero
he was, as if G.I. Joe was based on this guy. As it turns out, the person from
the article was a soldier I was in Iraq with; in fact, he was one of my
commanders. And on top of this, he was no American Hero, he was a disgrace to
the uniform and should have been kicked out of the military or thrown in jail.
It was at that point that I decided to write the book and get the truth out
there, and tell the people what’s really happening.
Q: How did you come up with the title?
A: Initially the title was: “Behind the Glory.” Then we wanted to change the
title, and with the help of the editors, and Philip Zimbardo, we came up with:
“Mass Casualties: A Young Medic’s True Story of Death, Deception, and Dishonor
Q: How did you find an agent and publisher?
A: I was going to self-publish, then my girlfriend told me to at least try a real
publisher out, I did, and I got a book deal on the first try.
Q: Who reads you work in progress?
A: Anyone who will, I try to get as many opinions as I can.
Q: Who made a difference in the book’s quality?
A: The publisher did a great job on the formatting etc, but the real quality is
inside the book, in the pages, the quality of the truth.
Q: How long did it take you to complete the first draft?
A: One Year.
Q: How long did it take from start to publication?
A: I got back from Iraq in October 2007, the book was then released in October
2009, so it took two years to write the book and get it on bookshelves.
Q: Do you have any advice for new authors?
A: Write. I meet so many people that want to be writers, but they write less than
an hour a day, if you want to be a writer than write, if you want to be an
author than write, rewrite, do edits, do more edits, do more rewrites, do more
edits, a little more edits, and then try to send it out.
Thank you, Michael Anthony for stopping by Paperback Writer on your virtual book
tour. I wish you continued success through the rest of you tour.