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Matt Altobelli

Matt Altobelli

Rochester, New York

Author of the Memoir, The American Nightmare and The Art of Failure (Due out 2018), Matt shows you the world through the eyes of a shattered mind.

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About the author

Broken from war, and the years and choices that followed, Matt began to study psychology.  His main goal was a deeper understanding for why he thought the way that he did.  With many failed businesses and relationships following his departure from the military, Matt found therapy in writing….and in therapy.  Author of “The American Nightmare, and the Art of Failure”, where he documents the effect PTSD and other mental disorders had on his ability to make rational decisions and live in the “real world”.  The events of his life were not enough, so he began to look through humanity as a whole and recognized patterns of behavior throughout history. This was the inspiration behind “Random Thoughts of the Enlightened and Insane”, where the line between the two is very blurry and the only difference is success and failure.  He continues to further his knowledge in psychology at the Rochester Institute of Technology, while he writes and publish more articles and books.  

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Random Thoughts of the Enlightened and Insane

A Look into the thoughts of an Educated mind, with mental issues.

Influenced by education and the world around us, this is a take on current and past issues, and ideas by a slightly broken mind.

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Mind & Body Philosophy/Psychology
100,000 words
25% complete
3 publishers interested


Venture deep into the mind of someone who has seen the world like only few have. A shattered perspective on topics talked about and fought over daily. These are the thoughts of a mind poisoned by post traumatic stress disorder, and bipolar one disorder.  An adventure into the random thoughts of a war veteran who has used experience and education to shape his understanding of the world around him.  His mission: Change the world before his last breath leaves his lungs.  From the deepest reaches of the human brain, to the most outward of human constructs, this book examines everything from Psychology and philosophy, to humanity and time. This is the story of us all, narrated by corruption. 


Chapter 1: A Mind is a Terrible Thing (Psychology)

                Armed with an education in cognitive and abnormal psychology Matt takes on the electrical impulses that makes us do and think the way we do.  Are we more than just a hardwired machine? Where does personality come into the picture?

Chapter 2: Why do you think? (Philosophy)

                The world is a confusing place.  With near endless points of view, it is hard to define right and wrong, but we can try.

Chapter 3: A Global Disease (Humanity)

                A look back, and forward into what humanity has been, and could be. Despite being so similar in so many ways, we have always been a world conflicted.

Chapter 4: When are we?  (Time and Space)

                Does Time depend on space?  What is the relationship between the much larger cosmos and humanity?

Chapter 5: Rhyme with Reason (Poetry)

                A poetic look into my mind and the way I feel about events in my life, and in the world.

Chapter 6: Find me the Printer (Money)

                A look at the magical paper that rules the world.

Chapter 7: When I die (Legacy)

                What do I hope to leave when I am gone, and what should our goals be as a species?

Chapter 8: This is not how I thought it would be (After Life)

                Our minds can’t possibly comprehend what happens to it after our bodies no longer have life. Here are some speculations, and they may be different from the paintings you see in museums and church. 


College level students who are interested in philosophy, psychology, and ethics are the target audience for “Random Thoughts of the Enlightened and Insane”.  The content of the book makes it perfect for these individuals because it is not necessarily concrete.  The subject matter can not be proven to be right or wrong, so it opens up the educated mind to conversations that could further the understanding of humanity.  It is written for me, and people like me, who are interested in deep level conversations, and not so interested in what the Kardashians are up to.  The content would be misunderstood for people who do not have a background in psychology or philosophy and will not appease to people interested in pop culture.  Research done by the department of Education shows that Psychology is the second most studied major in America, right behind social sciences, making the target audience large in the academic community.  


My First book, “The American Nightmare, and the art of Failure” is being professionally published and advertised on over 900 website, as well on the shelves in major book stores such as Barnes and Noble.  The book has its own website, and I have a decent social media following.  I have a lot of support from my military family who cannot wait to purchase it.  I would like to publish this book 6 months after the release of my first, and keep the excitement going.  I am planning a release party and book signing for the first one, with the e-mail invite list in the thousands.   At my university I am a peer mentor, and president of the psychology club.  I am involved in labs and very active in the community which has made me an influential member in my circles.  No one will work harder than me to meet a goal or deadline, so when it comes to marketing and advertising, no one will work harder than me to do what needs to be done. 


The list of books I am competing with is too long to put down here. I am competing with Psychology and Philosophy books both old and new. When a student goes into the book store, why pick mine?  “Random Thoughts of the Enlightened and Insane” takes a different approach to old philosophical theories, and even offers some new ones, by implementing what we have learned about the brain, and the way humans think and act.  Many philosophers don’t take science and biology into account when coming up with their theories, but it should be the baseline for all theories, because there is always a reason (electrical or chemical) to why we do things. By analyzing who we are as a creature, we can come to conclusions about why we act the way we do as human beings.  It also explains these concepts to the reader as an individual, so they can see where they fit into all this.  The old saying “im only human” is a way for people to deflect their mistakes, and they would be right to do so, because our central nervous system and peripheral nervous system are wired for survival.  Survival is based on what we perceive it to be.  When looking for what book to pick up, pick mine up to see the world through my eyes.  A collision of science, ethics, and morality. 

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The following samples have been pulled from various chapters in the book.  Due to the nature of the book I did not want to put whole chapters in here, only teasers. 

There is still so much we don't know about ourselves, our planet, our universe, time and space itself. Life is filled with impossible possibilities, such as how can space be endless, and on the contrary, how could it not? I don't think our brain is designed to comprehend everything. Somethings take longer to figure out. If you are struggling to figure your life out, don't worry. You are probably right where you are supposed to be. Remember, there are an infinite amount of numbers between 0 and 1.

A positive attitude or thought can lead to a positive life, and a negative one can lead to a negative life. This seems to be true in most cases. You hear it all the time in self-help books and T.V. shows, but why is it? Research shows that language shapes your perception. This makes sense, after all, your thought are all in words. If the words running through your head are all negative, then your perspective and outlook will follow suit. It's not as if thinking positive forces the universe to give you everything you want, it just changes your perspective of the universe. The glass is no longer half empty, it might not even be half full, you are just happy there is something in the glass.

In studying human nature, you need to look no further than a child.  A toddler who has not yet been influenced or molded by society.  In watching little boys play you will notice the enjoyment of violence and aggression.  They like to wrestle, and punch, and hit, much like the aggressive behavior of a wolf pup.  At our core we are all animals, with instincts. This behavior is often suppressed by the parents and by society to grow the boy into a proper and socially functioning man.  Sometimes this suppression doesn’t take, and nature pushes through and causes the man to be violent towards man.  People kill, fight, steal, and abuse others, and usually have the same response when questioned. “I lost control.”  Evolution would understand the need for this aggressive instinct.  Before a civilized world these qualities could save your life.  In todays world they have no moral or social place, so we lock them up.

Medication Vs. Therapy

Everything your body or brain does is a reaction to something else; a defense mechanism, even if you don't see it that way. A person may go into an episode of dissociation when experiencing trauma because they are unable to handle it. The problem is this rewires your brain to be aware of similar situations and act accordingly. Many of these symptoms are suppressed with medications, but is the medication a cure? Medication is simply a tool used to combat symptoms while you work through the underlying problem. That is where therapy comes in. To dig deep into the past to uncover what made you the way you are and discuss it in a healthy and safe manner. I believe a good plan for recovery requires a little of both. Say you are in a bad car accident and break your legs and require surgery to fix them. The surgery and medication help with the pain, but you will still need physical therapy to help you move the way you did before the accident. These injuries are no different.

The Maniac: Mania has fed my demon for a long time. Initially the feeling was welcomed and seen as a positive. I had energy and would work all the time and needed no sleep. My decisions were harmful to myself and others, but I did not notice, and Mania did not care. Mania would climb over the broken bodies and souls of others to reach the top, and when at the top there was only one more thing for mania to do. Jump. Viewing all the bodies left in the wake of his conquest.

Mental Disorders like PTDS, Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar disorder etc, are silent killers. The people struggling with them often show the world what the world wants to see. On top of the disorder they are facing, they also have to pretend to be someone else. This is because of the stigma that comes with mental disorders. People are afraid to reach out for help because it makes them look different. They believe it shows weakness. How could they not. After all, it is ingrained in society. They call it a Disorder, implying the contrary to Order. Who wants to be a part of that group? That is where the change needs to start. We need to do a better job at encouraging those who suffer to step into the light, and once they do we need to do a better job at treating them and getting them the help they need.

"It's all in your head" Those words are often said by loved ones, to loved ones. It creates a feeling of weakness to the person in pain because they start to believe that it could be all in their head, and the pain they feel is not real. Not only are these words not helpful, they are ignorant. Your brain controls every movement, and every feeling you have, so if the problem lies in your brain or "your head" then it is very possible and even probable that it will manifest in a physical way.

A Computer virus is unseen when it takes its hold, but its effects are noticed. Treating the pop ups does not rid the computer of the virus.

The Deaths of a Man

A child so shy

Could not tell a lie

A fear he was given

By those who had stricken

The bruises he wore

Like the shame that he bore

A chance then was taken

To change the Forgotten

An oath in a room

To leave for his doom

A child no more

A new man at the door

He walked now with pride

And capably lied

His innocence lost

Intentions he tossed

As he marched for that door

Preparing for war

Nothing could stop him

The places he had been

All to prepare him

For the fight that’s inside him

The gun shots had shattered

The things he thought mattered

That blast from the gun

His training undone

Now he is left with

The guilt from his quickness

A crime with no witness

The men laid to rest

The birth of a demon, a new life to test

Angry he ripped through lives of the restless

A tornado destroying the weddings old guest list

These lives he affected would not forgive

The torment the demon decided to give

An Angel appeared from the dark

As friendly as a dog at the park

She whispered to him and saw that he fell

A demon is just an Angel from Hell

She ripped off her wings and gave him her Halo

So he could now fly and escape the tornado

The demon had died by the hand of an Angel

Who sacrificed heaven and lived with the painful

A Human was born full of remorse

The stable was empty and needed a horse

The days went by as he continued to try

To find meaning behind why people die

The support of his love now kept him alive

As he looked for a future that he could provide

He sought to protect her from all of his sin

The evil the world tried to let in

A shield to her he will be in the end








Hero or Villain

Fire, water, ice, rain

To save a life or cause it pain

A choice that’s made not in vain

Fire, water, ice, rain

We see the flame burn inside

To hope the hero did arrive

To play it safe or let it ride

Fire, water, ice, rain

What was the reason you did train

Through it all what did you gain

Chill out now it’s all the same

Fire, water, ice, rain

Hero they chant for who you’re killin

How do they know you’re not the villain

Stand there now and watch it drain

Loose memories to keep you sane

Flush the past from your brain

Conflicting views now seem the same

Fire, water, ice, rain

Check the mirror on the double

Know how it looks to be in trouble

What road is the right to take

The path of a hero you try to make

The villain creeps up in your mind

Gives you thoughts that aren’t so kind

Fire, water, ice, rain

The world is not so black and white

What’s wrong for one, to you is right

Keep the peace with all your might

Inevitably the need to fight

Values now filled with regret

For the villain you have met

Fire, water, ice, rain

They look to you to take the blame

In the end you feel shame

The hero’s path leads to hate

No matter what it will be too late

To save a life still causes pain

Fire water, Ice Rain 

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  • Mike Dettore
    on Sept. 14, 2018, 1:27 p.m.

    DUDE!!! I'm so proud and excited for you. Looking forward to reading this and changing my own thoughts and path. Good for you buddy and best of luck. Miss ya man.