JL Bowers lives in Los Angeles—alone, except for a handful of furry creatures and an overactive imagination.
That's it. That's my tag.What? It's not enough? All you need to know about me is in that picture to the right. Hahaha. Just kidding.Okay, I get it. People want to know about the authors they read. Me? I'm okay with knowing the bare minimum. As long as I enjoy the work, I'm good. And most author bios read like resumes anyway. Snooze, am I right?So lets compromise. I'll explain the quote below and why I chose if for this page and for my Twitter header. It's from the poem THE VOICELESS—a reflection on those unfortunate souls who go to their graves without ever really expressing or living. I vowed early on that would not be me. That I would do what makes me sing, and only what makes me sing. Which is why I'm often broke. Hahaha.
But I also chose this quote because it is relevant to writing. Authors are often told to "find their voice," both broadly, and also stylistically in their writing. It's something I strive for in my own work and sometimes achieve.There. Now wasn't that way more interesting and revealing about me than where I went to school and how I pay my bills? But if you want more, please check out my FAQ section below.Cheers!
Alas for those that never sing, but die with all their music in them.
As a child, I read everything adventurous: pirates, explorers, orphans, the old west, you name it. Then, as a teen, I discovered Stephen King. I loved the dark rebelliousness of his work(apropos for that stage of life, I think) and his colorful characterizations. In early adulthood, I found Robert Ludlum, and that's where my love for suspense was—you might say—Bourne. Louis L'Amour(yes, that's right, the western writer), exposed me early on to strong action and pacing. With Greg Iles, I learned that rich prose in a thriller was not an oxymoron, and that it could be just as compelling as the suspense. I could go on, but ultimately, every author I've read has influenced me in some way or another, whether they were good authors or bad.
Not in school. Haha. Let me clarify. Whenever I fill out a survey questionnaire, I have to check "Some College." As far as authors go, I'm minimally educated. Or, more politely, self-taught. I learned from reading and by doing. I think the only instruction books I've read are "On Writing" by Stephen King and an editing book after writing my first novel.
Thriller/mystery of course! The sub-genre I prefer varies. For awhile, I couldn't get enough of international spy and political thrillers, but lately, I've been reading more psychological thrillers. I also like philosophy, general literature, witty authors of any genre, and have dabbled in horror and historical fiction. I've only read a handful of Sci Fi, mostly the Star Wars EU, favoring Timothy Zahn.
This is one of the most asked questions, but my least favorite to answer, because I just don't know. Sometimes I get inspired by an article I've read, sometimes by a word spoken or a question asked. But more often, it's just things entering my head.
I sometimes wonder if the question is asked because people want to know if the things you write represent the way you think, especially when it comes to villains. Yeah, I've caught your head tilt and your wary, probing eyes. You are wondering how anyone could write the inner monologue of a murderer, bigot, thief, without actually being one. Well, I can assure you I'm not a psychopath. For me, it comes down to empathy and a highly sensitive nature. The last being a minus sometimes in real life, but an asset in writing.
Just making myself do it. Some days it's hard to start. On those days, I tell myself, "just ten minutes. That's all." Sometimes those ten minutes turn into several hours. Sometimes, it's just those ten minutes, especially when the words won't flow. But then I try something different, like editing or research, so at least I'm still moving forward.