James,

        I first dreamed of becoming a novelist when I was about 13 years old. I was still in 8th grade when I started writing short stories. That summer I was paid $4 a day for irrigating cotton, and I used the money to buy a typewriter. The day I got it home, I started work on my first "novel". Nine months later, I finished it. It wasn't much of a novel, only 120 typewritten pages, double-spaced, but I finished it (and it's still in my garage).

        My high school teachers raved over my writing ability. I didn't know it was any big deal...I just liked to write stories. I didn't realize right away that I had a serious talent, even though I had written five (somewhat longer) books by the time I graduated high school. One of my English teachers said to my mother, "If he was my son, I'd take him out of school before I'd let him stop writing".

        Right around the time I first started writing, my mom joined WCG (RCG at that time). I was writing stories all the time, and I shared them with some of the kids at church. Not surprisingly (knowing what I know now), a ton of shit came down on my head. Mr. Armstrong had said fiction is a waste of time, just "ready-made daydreams". And I was writing daydreams of my own.

        To make a very long story short, I was sneered at, snickered at, insulted, and condemned. I finally surrendered. I gave up my dream of becoming a famous novelist because “God's ministers” disapproved of the idea.

        Fast forward to 1992. I left WCG on May 29. A couple of months later I saw an ad in a magazine for people to write children's books. I knew it was a ripoff and I didn't bite, but it got me thinking. I sat down at the keyboard and banged out a 31,000 word kid's novel featuring my son Joe (who now works for Disney Animation) and his friend Howard. It only took me two weeks, writing a couple of chapters each night, and the boys loved it. They shared it with their friends. It was a hit.

        I was 44 years old. I had figured, back when I was a kid, that by the time I was 44 I would be world famous for my novels. (That was a kid's dream, of course, but it does happen to some people.) But in 1992, I was a complete unknown as a writer. Hell, I wasn't even writing. But I decided it wasn't too late. I wasn't dead yet, and I still had time to go after my dream.

        I sat down and started a science fiction novel that had been banging around in my head for years, about a slave girl who escapes an oppression society and makes her way to Earth, where she joins the Space Force and fights to free her enslaved planet.

        I hadn't written much in a long time. The talent was there, but like a diamond in the rough, it needed polishing. I tried but failed to sell the novel. In the meantime I wrote another novel, a prequel to the first, and later a third novel that included some of the same characters but told the story of the galaxy-wide war from a much broader perspective. In 1997 I joined an online workshop for science fiction writers, and learned a lot of techniques that I hadn't known before (or had forgotten).

        One of the things I realized about that first novel was that it was much too long for a "first" novel. Publishers won't take a chance on a newcomer with a 135,000 word book that might not sell. They prefer first novels at around 90,000 words. So in 2004 I split the story in two, rewrote the first ten chapters completely, and created a fourth book in the set.

        So...why the hell am I telling you all this?

        Because on July 15, 2009, that first novel went on sale.

        I'm 60 years old (61 next month), and I let my dream get away (thanks to HWA and his Gestapo), but at least I won't die unpublished. Would I have ever become famous? Maybe not. Is my writing any good? You be the judge.

        The book is called A Vow  to Sophia, and you can review it Here.

        (More information at: http://bornnovelist.wordpress.com/a-vow-to-sophia/)

        John Bowers


        John Bowers began his first “novel” at age 13. It took him nine months and was only 30,000 words, but he finished it. Before he graduated high school, he wrote four more. His teachers were convinced he was the next Hemingway, but it was not to be.

        Bowers was raised in a religious cult. Cults suppress creativity, demanding obedience and conformity. Though he wrote several more novels for fun, he never published them, and by the age of 30 he gave up writing entirely.

        At age 44 he broke out of the cult, rediscovered his dream, and began writing again. He wrote a juvenile adventure for his children, and then began a science fiction novel. That novel became A Vow  to Sophia.

         

        The Fighter Queen

        The exciting conclusion to A Vow to Sophia.

        The war with Sirius has dragged on for 14 years with the Sirians begrudging every backward step with total ferocity. With a huge price on her head, Onja's hopes for fulfilling her vow still drive her to fight on. But will she survive to find her Vegan family and rescue her mother and sister from slavery? As the fleet fights its way to Vega, she worries that her family has been scattered to other planets within the Confederacy.

        On the Confederacy's home planet of Sirius, Federation POW's struggle to survive the brutalities of their guards while they await rescue.

        What surprise and danger awaits Onja on Sirius? Will she find her relatives? Can she ever find someone to replace Johnny in her heart?

        Read the exciting conclusion of the Fighter Queen Saga, and the end of the Sirian plan to conquer the known Galaxy.

        114,000 words (roughly equivalent to 430 pages in mass market paperback format)

        Rated "R" for sex, language, and violence.

         

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        The Fighter King

        The 3rd book in the Fighter Queen Series.

        Oliver Lincoln III is a walking contradiction – he sells combat fighters for his dad’s defense plant, but he is a dedicated pacifist.

        During a sales trip to the Sirian Confederacy, Oliver’s sister, a holonews reporter, tells him a disturbing secret. When his sister is later murdered by the Sirian secret police, the KK, it doesn’t take Oliver long to put the squares together — Sirius is about to invade a peaceful world, using the combat fighters he sold them!

        Oliver can’t prevent the invasion, but in a desperate race against time he travels to Vega 3, hoping to arm them with Lincoln fighters so they can at least defend themselves. But the timetable is shorter than he thought, and he finds himself trapped in a global war with a difficult choice to make.

        The Fighter King is a novel about the clash of civilization, personal choices, and coming of age. Before The Fighter Queen, there was The Fighter King. It all starts here.

        139,000 words (roughly equivalent to 424 pages in mass market paperback format)

        Rated "R" for sex, language, and violence.

         

        Star Marine

        When the Sirian Confederacy attacked the Federation, six star systems became embroiled in a 22-year galactic war. Six years after the attack, the Federation is finally ready to go on the offensive. The plan – retake the Outer Worlds, liberate Altair and Alpha Centauri, then slam it down the enemy’s throat, invading Beta Centauri, Vega 3, and Sirius.

        It takes all kinds to fight a war.  

        Rico Martinez: A Star Marine, a grunt.  Almost killed in the Titan operation, he is one of six who survives, but his war has only begun.  Unheralded and unheroic, he fights for his life and his buddies as they invade Alpha Centauri, and saves the Fighter Queen from certain death when she is shot down in a blizzard.  But his fate and destiny merge in the invasion of Beta Centauri, when he locks and loads in the deadly bloodbath of Periscope Harbor. 

        Regina Wells: The only child of Federation Senator Henry Wells, Regina promises her dad she won’t join the military.  But when she is recruited by the FIA for a black op to discover who is dealing battle plans to the enemy, she may prefer the sting of battle instead – her mission takes her to the enemy’s home world.  Can she learn the identity of the spy in time to save the Star Marines at Periscope Harbor? 

        Wade Palmer: A graduate student and a jock.  When his father is killed in battle against the Sirians, Wade joins the Space Force, but his degree in statistical analysis lands him in the Polygon planning the war instead of fighting it. Wade feels trapped – he wants to be fighting.  Even his girlfriend is a combat gunner, while he remains safe at home. Then he sees the plan to capture Periscope Harbor…and knows it won’t work.  Is there any way he can rescue the plan before the Star Marines are slaughtered? 

        You’ve seen The Fighter Queen in her battle against the Sirian ConfederacyStar Marine! tells the rest of the story.

        Available NOW from AKWBooks.com

        Rated "R" for sex, language, and violence.

         

        The Sword of Sophia

        Three years after the last shot was fired and Oliver Lincoln III left Vega 3 to return home, the Sword of Sophia emerges. Vega 3 has been invaded and overwhelmed by the Sirian Confederacy, its women raped, its society enslaved. The Vegans have put up a vicious fight worthy of their Viking ancestors, charging the Sirians a gallon of blood for every yard of the planet, but now the fight is over, the battle lost. Vega 3 has been conquered.

        But deep in the Scroll of Sophia, that mystical goddess the Vegans hold dear, is a nearly forgotten prophecy of a time when the invader’s boot will stand on Vega 3. The prophecy says Sophia will send a sword—a sword of justice—and the invader will be torn asunder.

        Is the prophecy real, or just a false hope? And if the prophecy is real, is it really possible to throw the Sirians off of Vega 3? And what…or who…is
        the “Sword of Sophia”?

         

        Sirian Summer

        When Nick Walker arrives on Sirius 1 to take over the United Federation Marshal’s office at Kline Corners, his first priority is to find out who murdered the man he is replacing, Ron Gates. But Kline Corners is like no place he has ever seen — it looks like an Ancient West cow town, complete with sheriff and saloon.

        But things are not what they seem. Nick soon discovers an epidemic of missing girls, talk of racial oppression, and outright human slavery. If he can get to the bottom of those issues, he may learn who murdered Ron Gates.

        Rated "R"

        102,400 words (equivalent to 384 pages in mass market paperback form)

         

         

         

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        The Born [email protected]

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        The Born [email protected]

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