Thursday, November 20, 2014

Servant: The Chronicles of Servitude, Book 1

Servant has been released.

It has a shiny new cover (it's a long story why I ultimately could not use the first one, which was beautiful), and is my thickest novel to date, which is a little bit misleading since it's printed on thicker paper than my previous two novels. I mean, it DOES have more words than the other two, but if it was printed on the same kind of paper as the other two, it wouldn't be as thick as it is.

Wait, am I rambling? [glances around nervously]


Servant has been more than three years in the making. Needless to say, I'm glad this project is finished. In the meantime I've been working on a manuscript called SACRIFICE, which will be Book 2 in The Chronicles of Servitude. (If you couldn't guess, Servant is Book 1. Solitude is Book 0. It's fun counting from zero.) Sacrifice will probably be released in the fall of 2015. I say "probably" because crazy things happen and like to throw giant wrenches into one's plans.

Blue Harvest Creative did an amazing job formatting Servant and designing the cover. And look how they did the interior!

Servant is available in both Kindle and paperback formats from Amazon. You can order the Kindle version here and the paperback here. Happy reading!

Bobby Roland knows things he shouldn't. 

Plagued with premonitions of disaster, he fights to save others’ lives. What Bobby doesn't foresee is that rescuing a stranger from death will place him in the line of fire. 

He discovers a world of evil spirits and tormented souls when he becomes entangled in a madman's plot to kill the Servant, a man chosen by God to exorcise demons from the possessed. When Bobby falls under spiritual attack following the encounter, he must choose between saving others and saving himself.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Solitude: The Chronicles of Servitude, Book 0

Yesterday, September 9, the prequel short story to my upcoming series of novels was released on Amazon.

Originally I had no plans of writing Solitude. Servant was to be the first book of the series, and that was good enough for me.

But then fellow authors Katie Cross and LaDonna Cole each released stories that tied into their own series of novels, and my author brain said, "Hey, I can do that, too!"

To my surprise, it wasn't that hard for me to come up with an idea for a story that would lead into the beginning of Servant. In Servant, twenty-year-old protagonist Bobby Roland has been in Oregon for a year after previously having lived in Utah, New York, and Ohio. Bobby tells Randy Bellison, a man who for some reason seems to attract poltergeists or some other unsavory thing, that he used to work at a music store in Utah before moving to Oregon.

And you know what's funny? I had no idea what compelled Bobby to pack up his bags and leave Utah.

So when writing Solitude, I finally figured out why, and now you can, too.

Premonitions of disaster tend to put a damper on one's plans. 

Bobby Roland would much rather spend his evenings practicing songs on his electric guitar, but fate has a different idea tonight. 

Bobby hangs out with a local rock band on the weekends, and he knows one of the members will be killed at tonight’s jam session. But who will be hurt, and how will Bobby save him? Can he set aside his fear and be vigilant enough to find out, or will it be too late?

Download your very own copy of Solitude today!

And add it to your to-read list on Goodreads, too!

If you've read this far, let me tell you a fun little fact. A couple years ago I discovered The Piano Guys, a beautiful music group from Utah, and that's where I came up with the idea that Bobby worked in a music store there. Also, go listen to The Piano Guys. There's a cello involved, too, but I guess "The Cello Guys" didn't sound as good.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Ragged Edge Reunion

Yesterday I came home from my first-ever writing conference feeling totally stoked. I learned so much and absorbed so many things this past weekend that I'm still sifting through it all and probably will be for the next several weeks.

The funny thing is that a non-writer person who is very close to me asked, prior to my departure, what the writing conference was going to be about.

I drew a blank. "Um...there's going to be stuff on how to write query letters and stuff."

Yeah. Stuff.

Since the conference has concluded, I can sum it up in a few short words:


Okay, that was only two words. Authors aren't supposed to know how to count.

It was such a beautiful feeling finally getting to meet so many wonderful, creative people in person. I felt like I knew almost everyone already. We writer types are like one big, happy, demented family who should not be permitted to touch sharp objects or fireplace tools.

Or ketchup.

Here are some snippets from this weekend.

1. I kept coughing because I'm not used to talking and the act of speaking was irritating my throat.

2. A fellow writer was constantly brushing her teeth. Note to self: create a character who is constantly brushing her teeth.

3. I nearly gave myself a hernia laughing at Katie's Ted impression.

4. "We must love the brown monkeys."

5. Two words: war paint.

6. I won a sweatshirt for being voted Biggest Grammar Nazi.

7. There was a surprise guest who passed out advance copies of his newest book.

8. The surprise guest tried to steal my red Sharpie.

9. Instead of plaques, we give out headstones.

10. When it rains in Nashville, IT RAINS.

11. It's okay to not have any idea of what you're doing.

12. Have a ridiculous amount of belief in yourself.

13. We are enslaved by our desire to be perceived in a favorable way.

14. Writing can't be taught, only learned.

15. Blue is the color of all that I wear.

16. And I was not the weirdest person there.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Editing, Schmediting

SERVANT came back from the editor on Monday, and I've spent every day since then trying not to be disheartened by all the red marks with which my editor painted my document.

Every time I send off a novel or short story to be beta-read or edited, fear reaches out its knobby fingers and latches onto my heart. My chest tightens. I feel like I can't breathe right. What if they say my story sucks? What if it's so bad it can't be published and I have to start all over from the beginning?

I'm sure many authors have this fear. We want our work to be perfect but know it isn't. What is clear in our minds does not always translate to the page, which I have learned time and time again.

In SERVANT'S case, I understood my characters, but the editor found their motivations murky. She said they needed to be developed better. So far I've altered one scene to read from a different character's point of view, flip-flopped two scenes so they appear in a different order, wrote in some flashbacks so a relationship could be understood better, consulted a native Spanish speaker to check the correctness of a sentence, picked a different Bible verse for a passage at a wedding, and fixed what a character was doing since the editor said it was physically impossible for him to do it.

And that's not all, because I'm not finished combing through the document. When I'm done, I'll comb through it again to tweak things further, and then again after that. Then it gets sent back to the editor so she can look at all my changes.

[wipes sweat from brow]

The plus side? She said my writing is tight! (Which means I don't use excessive words.)

SERVANT should be coming very soon now. I can almost taste it. Can you?

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Waiting in the Dark

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SERVANT is coming!

But you probably knew that already.

On Thursday I spoke with a book formatting person on the phone for an hour and a half. Do you know how long it's been since I talked on the phone that long? About 7 years--I kid you not. I learned lots and lots of stuff during that hour and a half and even found out that said book formatting person is a huge Dean Koontz fan. (If you don't know, my discovery of Dean Koontz's novels completely changed the style and themes of my writing.)

Anyway--to further whet your appetite while we all await SERVANT'S unscheduled release, here's a snippet from Chapter 11, when Bobby Roland waits for Randy Bellison in the dark...


He sat up and stared at the distant door of the unit Randy had disappeared through. The light still glowed behind drawn curtains. He hoped everything was okay in there. Randy had told him he’d be back, but it grew so late that he considered asking if Randy would be willing to stay there until morning.
            But Bobby wasn’t going to be the guy to interrupt their conversation.
            Or anything else that might be going on in there, for that matter.
            Ever the gentleman, he waited for Randy to emerge.
            Seconds turned into long minutes. It had to be two o’clock by now. Tomorrow he would be cleaning a church at this time of night. By himself. In a seedy part of town. Where people cut brake lines on cars and unseen beings tapped on the windows.
            As if on cue, a small object bounced off the windshield and rolled down the hood. Fear seized his heart for a second before he realized it was only an acorn that had fallen from one of the tree limbs hanging above the car.
            The night became still once more. He waited.
            A length of time passed. He shifted positions and gazed out the window again. The apartment lights were still on.
            He sighed.
            A speck of orange light inside the car to his left caught his eye as he went to lie down again. He squinted. It looked like the burning tip of a cigarette, but aside from that he couldn’t see anything within the vehicle.
            It would seem Bobby was not the only one waiting for something in the dim parking lot, and since nobody had entered or exited the other vehicle since Bobby arrived, the smoker must have lurked behind dark windows for the entire duration of Bobby’s wait.
            He continued to watch the cigarette. Intuition told him the person smoking it was a man. What was he doing here? Casing the joint? Waiting for someone to meet him? Or was he just out here to smoke?
            Bobby held his finger over the automatic lock button, knowing he was probably overreacting. But he wasn’t in the best shape. Kids in school had made fun of him, calling him Knobby Bobby and Skinny Ninny and things like that, generally before he got slammed face first into a locker. If this guy wanted to break into his car and steal his wallet, Bobby wouldn’t be able to stop him without getting broken himself.
            He pushed the button. The sound of the locks engaging was as loud as a car backfiring in the quiet air.
            The cigarette went out.
            Bobby stopped breathing. Two eyes that he couldn’t see were likely staring in his direction.
            “Randy,” he whispered, “it would be great if you could get out of there so I can leave.”
            He supposed he could leave the car himself and take refuge inside the girlfriend’s apartment, but it would be rude to barge in on such a scene. The woman had tried to kill herself. She had to be messed up on something. Drugs, maybe. Normal, healthy people didn’t want to die. They wanted to—
            The voice of reason spoke inside his head. Get out of the car. Now.
            Bobby didn’t need to be told twice. He scrambled across to the passenger seat, made sure he had his keys and wallet, and dove out the door.


For more SERVANT sneak peeks, check out these posts:
And be sure to visit SERVANT'S board on Pinterest!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

Have you ever been reprimanded for doing the right thing? Did it make you angry? In SERVANT, Bobby Roland knows this feeling all too well...

(Excerpt from Chapter 2 of SERVANT)

Many boys he knew dreamed of being firemen and astronauts when they grew up, but deep down, Bobby Roland had always wanted to be a superhero.
The plan was simple. He would have a secret lair and identity (unassuming musician) and devote the rest of his time to helping those in need. He would help old ladies cross the street. He would scare off bank robbers with his self-taught karate moves. He would be adored by the public and lauded a champion of the people in the newspapers, which would fly off the stands and be read by citizens the world over.
He had even come up with a name for himself: Rescue Man. Because that’s what he would do. Rescue people in whatever way necessary to ensure their protection.
Ah, the follies of childhood. If only he had known.
Bobby steered his way home through the driving rain, trying his best not to let his anger blind him to the perils of the wet road. The condemning words repeated themselves in his mind like a broken record. You’re fired. You’re fired. You’re fired.
Part of him wanted to cry. Part of him wanted to smash his fist into something soft and warm, preferably his former manager’s face. But he’d just stood there, numb, and listened to the man’s words like a truant schoolboy receiving a scolding from his principal.
Within his veins, however, his blood began to boil. He had only been doing the right thing. Rescue Man would have done the same, but Rescue Man did not exist.

Stay tuned for more sneak peeks! And be sure to follow J. S. Bailey at and for additional updates, posts of insanity, and more!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

SERVANT is coming! It has a cover now! And words!

(Okay, it already had words.)

Yes, SERVANT is coming soon. No, I don't know what day it will arrive at your favorite purveyor of books. The cover is finished, at least, and it's really, really cool. In fact, it's my favorite cover out of all my books. Bask in its beauty and awesomeness! BASK IN IT!!!

Now that your eyes have been sated, here's a sneak peek from this novel that took me so long to write. Watch out for flying pop cans.


            Just as his tired mind began to wander off on some other tangent, something ticked against the window to the left of his bed. A bug, probably, or something kicked up by the wind. Funny, though. It kind of reminded him of that crazy sound he kept hearing earlier when—
            Tap. Tap-tap-tap.
            Bobby’s muscles froze. It was the same sound he’d heard in the church office. And what had Randy said? That whatever caused it was like a poltergeist. The sounds wouldn’t bother Bobby when Randy left his job at the church because Randy was the one whom the unnamed thugs were after. But now Bobby had associated with the man, and the beings—whatever they were—had followed him.
            Tap-tap. Tap.
            Of course Bobby was being silly. Poltergeists did not exist, and he certainly didn’t believe in ghosts. Randy had simply freaked him out with some kind of sound-throwing trick back at the church. Maybe the tapping hadn’t been on the window at all and was really something Randy himself was doing under the desk. Or had it been a recording? It was even possible that Randy owned a secondary vehicle and had followed Bobby home at a distance just to torment him further. Bobby could see no motive for such actions, but crazy people didn’t follow the same logic that others did.
            Bobby held his breath and continued listening for any indication that a solid, flesh-and-blood human stood outside the window. Aside from the tapping, all he heard was the soft sighing of wind in the trees.
            He waited five minutes before tiptoeing out of bed and peering through a gap in the drapes. The moon lit up the night with a pale milky glow, though the wind made patchy clouds scud across the sky at a fast clip that alternately dimmed and brightened the cratered orb. The brief periods of brightness weren’t enough. If someone lurked in the yard, he couldn’t see them.
            Tap. The sound, louder this time, originated from a more distant point. The creep had chosen another window and upgraded to small boulders instead of pebbles.
            “That’s it.” Bobby jammed his bare feet into gym shoes and pulled on a sweatshirt. If he didn’t stop the guy, he would break a window and then Bobby’s landlord would jack up the rent to astronomic proportions if he didn’t throw Bobby out for associating with the wrong crowd.
            Bobby owned no weapons. He did have a fireplace poker hanging in a stand by the hearth out in the living room. He had no intention of using it, but it might strike fear into the creep’s heart and make him run away.
            He crept out of his bedroom, slowly lifted the poker out of the stand so it wouldn’t make a clanging noise that would rouse Caleb, and undid the deadbolt on the back door.
            The porch light had burnt out some months before and neither of the house’s occupants had bothered replacing it, much to Bobby’s current regret. The moon disappeared behind a bank of fast-moving clouds again. He could have brought out a flashlight, but stealth might be in his favor if he could catch the guy by surprise.
            He made sure the door wouldn’t lock behind him and stepped onto the small cement slab where they kept the tiny charcoal grill they’d used maybe twice all summer. His eyes already adjusted to the darkness since he hadn’t turned on any lights during his short flight from the bedroom to here. He took quick inventory of the yard. Garbage cans. Stunted bushes. Chain-link fence. The creep didn’t have many places to hide, though it was possible he’d heard Bobby and dashed around to the side of the house to hunker down behind the giant pine tree that took up a good portion of the side yard.
            Anything was possible.
            Well, almost anything.
            He was about to step off the slab when something whizzed by his head and bounced off the lid of the grill before clattering to the ground.
            He wanted to whirl around and see what it had been, but if he turned his back, the creep might sneak up behind him and conk him on the head. He squinted. What direction had the thing come from? He didn’t see—
            Clunk. Another something landed at his feet. Keeping his gaze trained on the yard, Bobby stooped and found the object with his hand. He picked it up and held it in front of his face.
            The moon emerged briefly from behind the mantle of clouds.
            He held a crushed can of Dr Pepper. Not nearly as crushed as it would have been had it been in Caleb’s grip when that news bit about the murdered girl had been on television, but crushed nonetheless.
            Bobby remembered part of his exchange with Randy earlier in the evening.
It sounds like someone’s throwing rocks at the window.
            Rocks, sticks, whatever else they can find. I’m used to it.
            The Dr Pepper can had previously resided in one of the garbage cans along the back fence ten yards away, or more specifically, the “recycle” can sitting next to the one reserved for regular waste. Though Bobby didn’t see how a grown man could remain concealed behind the bins while launching such an assault, that’s where he had to be.
            Bobby squared his shoulders to make himself appear braver and marched across the damp grass, wielding the poker like a baseball bat. He stopped five feet away from the cans and cleared his throat. Maybe he could be diplomatic about this. “I know you’re back there,” he said, “and if you don’t want me to bash a hole in your head, you’ll come out with your hands up.” It sounded cheesy, but he didn’t have time to think of a more elaborate threat.
            He waited. Nothing moved. Maybe the guy was holding his breath.
            “Hello?” He took another tentative step forward. The lid of one can rested on the ground beside it. A few other crushed cans lay scattered in the grass.
            “I’ve got a fireplace poker,” he said.
            “Do you know what a person can do with a fireplace poker?”
            He hoped that none of his neighbors would hear him and think he had flipped his lid.
            He continued anyway. “You don’t?” His voice shook. “Well, I’ll tell you. There’s this guy back home, you see. Lived with a crazy mama. She tried to kill him, but he killed her first with one of these things. He gives talks now. Stuff about forgiveness and moving on and things like that.” Now he was just rambling like a nutcase. “Do you want me to do that to you? Kill you with a poker like you’re a crazy mama?”
            He thought he heard a faint snicker somewhere in the night, but it might have just been the wind rustling through the grass and trees.
            Somehow the silence behind the garbage cans seemed far louder than all the nighttime sounds surrounding him. Gripping the poker in one hand, he dragged the recycle can aside with the other.
            Nobody was there.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Meet the Character: Randy Bellison

In last week's post I introduced you to the SERVANT character Bobby Roland, who is plagued with premonitions of disaster and wants to be a professional guitarist but isn't.

This week I'll introduce you to Randy Bellison, who has problems of an entirely different variety.

Randy is twenty-six years old but looks a good ten years older than that. He doesn't sleep much because when he isn't mopping floors at St. Paul's Church or spending time with Lupe, the woman he desires to marry, he's...

Well, if I told you, that would spoil the story, right?

Let's just say Randy practically walks around with a target on his back. One of his closest friends shot him in the shoulder and left him for dead before dropping off the face of the planet. Randy has since become so paranoid that he moved into a rundown house that practically looks abandoned so it won't ever look like anyone is home.

Crazy, huh?

But Randy wears cool shoes...

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And has a shirt that looks sort of like this...

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And wears a nifty watch, too!

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He has always lived here...
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And may or may not have someone shut inside his basement.

Randy is awesome. I wish he and I could sit down over drinks.
(Just an aside here: SERVANT'S cover is almost finished! And I have yet to hear back from the editor, so SERVANT still doesn't have a set release date. But it will be soon. SOON...)

Monday, June 2, 2014

SERVANT is coming soon!

So I've been dropping hints about my upcoming novel SERVANT for awhile. Like this:

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And this...

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And this...

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And this.

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Well, I'll give you even MORE hints.

SERVANT is about this wimpy guy named Bobby Roland who wants to be a professional guitarist but isn't.
Bobby knows things he shouldn't. In New York he told his neighbor not to go out one night because he would be hurt if he did. In Ohio he convinced his brother not to go to the movies so they wouldn't all die in an accident. And in Oregon he knows that if the man who interviewed him for his new job gets into his car and drives home, he will die.

How does Bobby know these things? Is he cursed? Is he just really good at guessing things? Does he have a crystal ball that helps him predict the future? Or is this ability of his something much more?

(Don't worry, Bobby doesn't know what's going on, either.)

Stay tuned, readers, for more sneak peeks, quotes, the cover reveal, and that elusive release date. In the meantime, hop on over to Pinterest to see more clues about what SERVANT has in store for you!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Meet the Author: S. R. Karfelt (and her books, too!)

Greetings, readers! I have a very special guest here today. Her name is Stephanie, but when she writes, we know her as S. R. Karfelt. (Believe me, I completely understand the whole alter ego thing.)

Karfelt pens novels from her home in the great State of New York. Her debut novel WARRIOR OF THE AGES released in 2013, and Book Number Two, BLANK, is now available from your favorite online retailers.

And now we'll let her have the floor.

So tell us a bit about yourself. How did you get into the business of writing? When did you first *know* you were a writer? 

Wife, Mother, High-Tech Industry Escapee, and I knew I wanted to write in first grade after my teacher read The Box Car Children out loud. Once they moved in with their grandfather – I realized it needed to be rewritten because all the fun stuff happened only when they were living on their own. After that I pretty much wanted to change every story I read, but finally settled for writing my own. 

Haha--I used to love the Box Car Children! Now I want to go back and read them again!


I’ve heard that you take a hands-on approach to novel research. What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done while conducting said research? 

Craziest is a matter of perspective, right? What would you say is crazier, hiking a forest alone at 3:00 a.m., skydiving, or eating insects? For me eating crickets was definitely nuts, but I really needed to experience these things in order to write about them. 

Eating insects would definitely rank high on the Crazy Scale.

BLANK is the second novel in the Warrior of the Ages series, and you have several more books planned for future release. What is the first thing you knew about this series of books? 

The idea for these books hit me when I was sick and at an engineering conference, the story just ticker-taped through my head (Times New Roman Font – 12 pt.). I couldn’t wait to start writing it down, which I did in pencil in notebooks at first. The thing that I knew for sure about these books was that I would finish writing them, I had to, and I reordered my life to do it. There are six of them by the way, it took me three years. This story owned me until I did. Weird fact: Two years after I started writing these I found a sketch pad from high school and there was a scene from these stories in them, so this one had been floating around in my head for quite some time.

Why is Kahtar from Warrior of the Ages so irresistibly sexy? 

Isn’t he? I think it is because he is the quintessential older man. He’s been around forever. The man has confidence and experience. He’s very capable and strong, but he’s also well aware of his own mistakes and short comings. For millennia he’d been soldiering onward by himself, unaware that he was in dire need of a soft place to fall.

What is BLANK about?   

Private Carole Blank was raised in foster care with no idea why she doesn’t fit into the world around her. Blank: A Shieldmaiden’s Voice is the story of a woman fighting tooth and nail for a place to belong, sentenced to the life of an assassin and denied the only thing she’s ever wanted – the heart of a man who is afraid of her.

So what exactly are the Covenant Keepers? 

Covenant Keepers are a group of people who made a covenant with ilu (God) after the fall of man, to atone. That is all I usually will say about them, because the details come out as necessary in subsequent books, but since you asked and you’re special, I’ll give you the scoop. They live in clans, mostly hidden from the rest of us, and they all follow the exact same ten laws with varying degrees of success. Perspective is a fascinating thing. It intrigues me that groups of people could follow the exact same rules with both utopian and dystopian results.

Do you have any writing quirks? 

I like to write in quiet, preferably at night, and when writing a first draft I won’t read any stories I haven’t read before – or watch movies/TV. I like to focus completely on the story and avoid outside influences.

If you were stranded on another planet, which three items would you want to have with you? 

Oxygen, shelter, and sustenance, but if those are already included, I’d like writing utensils, unlimited chocolate (for bartering purposes of course), and my electric blanket, Russell.

Have you ever tried to take over the world? 

That’s my husband’s job. I don’t want it, too much paperwork.

What is one of the most important things you’ve learned on your writing journey? 

This is what I love to do. It’s good to find your purpose.

What else would you like your readers to know?

Kahtar Constantine, Beth White, Honor Monroe, Welcome Palmer, and Carole Blank are some of the people I’d like readers to know. Trust me you won’t regret spending time with them. Love, honor, and purpose may seem like old-fashioned ideals, but when the chips are down, they’re really all human beings have.

Stephanie, thanks for dropping in! I loved the characters in WARRIOR OF THE AGES and I look forward to reading BLANK to see what they're up to.

And readers, be sure to check out the first chapter of BLANK at the following link:

And don't forget to visit S. R. Karfelt's websites:

And order Karfelt's books here!

Monday, May 19, 2014

My 700th Book

No, I have not written 700 books. But wouldn't that be cool?

I'm not your typical sort of author. My books get very few sales online, so I order colossal quantities of copies directly from my publisher and sell them to people in person at book signings and author talks and things.

Yesterday at my signing in Newport, Kentucky I sold my 700th book. This does not include the handful that have sold online. It's taken me just over three years to reach this number. 700 may not seem like much in the grand scheme of things, but I've worked hard setting up events and promoting my work, and this number shows that my efforts are slowly but surely paying off.

Of these 700, 485 were copies of The Land Beyond the Portal and 215 were Rage's Echo. Come on, RE! Let's pick up the pace! :)

If you are a recipient of one of these 700 copies, thank you for your support. Not everyone will risk reading a book that was written by a new and relatively unheard-of author, and it means a lot knowing that you took a chance on me. God bless you all!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Hey guys.

Remember this book?

The Land Beyond the Portal was my first published book-child. It came out in 2011. It features a young amnesiac, snow, devious villagers, a missing child, and an evil old dude named Litchfield.

A lot of readers really enjoyed their journey through the portal. So much, in fact, that they begged me to write a sequel.

Well, I never have thought of a way to continue the story of Laura (the aforementioned amnesiac) and her friends. But last week an author friend of mine suggested that I write a short story that connects to this novel in some way.

So I did. I finished the rough draft this morning. It's called "Rochelle's Pizza Run," because if you'll remember, Rochelle Peltier was practically dying for a pizza when The Land Beyond the Portal concluded. (Now you probably want one, too.)

It's a rare thing for me to complete a story that I begin, so I'm quite pleased I was able to do that with this one. It has all the literary value of a receipt from Walmart, but by golly, I finished it, and that's what matters the most.

I have no idea when it will be published. I just thought I'd let you know it exists.

Now go order a pizza. You know you want one.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

New Name

No, I have not renamed myself. I am still J. S. Bailey. Or Jenn. Or whatever.

This blog was previously Where Daylight Fades. It shall henceforth be known as Brain Problems! (at least until I think of something else) because, well, I'm a writer, and we're all a little insane in some way or another.

By the way, edits and cover design begin for Servant next month! And there's this new subscribey-box-thing above the picture of my computer and shoes on the right-hand side of the screen so you can receive my new posts in an email.

Also, I will be SIGNING BOOKS in Indiana and Kentucky within the next few weeks, though not at the same time, because while I may be insane, I have not developed the ability to clone myself.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Brain Problems, Servant, Cool Stuff, and More!

I have been a bad blogger lately. Well, technically I've been a good blogger since I do two posts a month over at, but THIS blog has unfortunately been neglected for the past several months because my brain is perpetually fried.

I realized what my brain problem is, aside from being fried. Actually it has a bunch of problems. Imagine turning on your radio and having about fifteen stations blast out of it all at the same time. You've got a jumble of classical, oldies, NPR, country, R&B, and everything else assaulting your ears, and you can't make any sense out of it so you curl up into a ball and cover your ears while hoping it all goes away.

That's my brain.

It's too full of stuff. I get overwhelmed. Then, to avoid being overwhelmed by the never ending maelstrom of thoughts, I end up playing spider solitaire or going outside and burning stuff, which is really quite relaxing.

The thing is, important stuff doesn't get done when I'm out torching sticks and broken fence pieces behind the house with the gleefulness of a manic arsonist. So at times I must force myself to accomplish Important Things, which include 1.) Writing my novel, 2.) Promoting my work, 3.) Making connections on social media, 4.) Writing some more, 5.) Setting up events, and 6.) More. This does not include household stuff and exercising, which are also Important Things.

But you know what? I recently accomplished an EXTREMELY Important Thing.

I wrote another novel.

It's called Servant, and will be the first book in a series about a wimpy wannabe hero named Bobby Roland who has a run-in with a group of people who have been chosen by God to drive demons out of those who are possessed. Bobby also has gut-wrenching premonitions of tragedy that haunt him day and night. And he likes to eat bagels, but despite his addiction he's still skinny as a rail. He's also socially awkward, so he's kind of like the author who invented him. (cough cough)

What's cooler is that I am going to be a very brave person and self-publish it. I've already talked to an editor and a cover designer, so it's my hope that Servant will be released upon the unsuspecting world by the end of the year.

More updates will come. In the meantime, happy reading and all that good stuff.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Writing Tip

Writers: don't tell me a character is beautiful. Show me that they're human.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Amish Vampires in Space

(Wow--three months without a new post. I'm sorry, guys. I'M SORRY!)

So today I'm going to tell you about a book I just read: Amish Vampires in Space by Kerry Nietz.

When I first heard about Amish Vampires in Space, I was just as skeptical as the next person for reasons that should be quite obvious if you know anything about the Amish. The title and cover scream "camp." Just look at that girl's face. LOOK AT HER. And at the body lying on the floor. And at the chicken hidden on the back cover.

So imagine my surprise when I learned that AViS, as this book shall henceforth be called, was supposed to be a "serious" novel. That's right. Nobody is making fun of the Amish. Nobody is making fun of vampires. This book is played totally straight.

I couldn't contain my curiosity, so I did the logical thing and bought myself a copy.

In the distant future, different planets in the galaxy have been "terraformed" so they will be suitable for human life. Several generations ago an Amish settlement was established on a planet called Alabaster. (The Amish shun technology, but it's okay for them to travel in a spaceship as long as a non-Amish person, or "Englisher," is the one flying it.)

One Amish man named Jebediah Miller secretly monitors Alabaster's sun with some glass instruments passed to him from his father, and Jebediah makes an unpleasant discovery: Alabaster's sun is expanding. The climate is getting hotter, and crops are failing. He knows that if he doesn't do anything, everyone and everything on Alabaster will die.

So Jebediah uses a forbidden piece of technology to call for help. The whole colony is (reluctantly) rescued by a cargo spaceship that is the futuristic equivalent of a giant FedEx truck. They will be taken to another, safer planet to reestablish a colony there.

Only something bad happens once everyone is on board: cargo that was picked up from a different planet contaminates a crew member and turns him into something that can best be described as a vampire. Then he bites other people and turns THEM into vampires. And the chaos gets worse and worse.

In the end, the Amish have to decide whether or not to follow their "Ordnung's" rule of nonviolence and let themselves be slaughtered, or to forsake their law and fight back.

I only had a few issues with this book. First of all, Kerry Nietz uses a writing style that is choppier than I am used to. Also, I wish that I could have learned more about some of the characters and their backgrounds, especially crew member Singer, who acts as a liaison between the Amish and the rest of the crew. I am also curious as to why a colony would be established in a system with a sun so close to the end of its life cycle.

In all, AViS sends a good message: it's okay to break the law of tradition if lives are at stake. Get it? Vampires? Stake?

I'll stop now.

Amish Vampires in Space may be purchased here.