J. R. Wagner was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania during a blizzard. The snow made travel by car impossible, so his father called an ambulance when his mother went into labor. The ambulance became stuck at the bottom of their home’s driveway, prompting the dispatch of a fire truck, which towed the ambulance to the hospital where he was born.
Maybe it was this experience that destined J.R. to love adventure. A competitive cyclist, triathlete, mountain biker and adventure racer, he once received a medal for saving a woman’s life during the kayaking section of an adventure race. And the adventure is hard to miss in his debut novel Exiled (Live Oak Book Group, June 5, 2012), the first book in J.R.’s young adult fantasy series The Never Chronicles. He’s got a day job to keep him “grounded”; J.R. helps run his late father’s Downingtown, Pennsylvania floor-covering business.
J.R. first started writing at 10 years old with his sequel to “Return of The Jedi” – the self-proclaimed “Star Wars geek” had lofty aspirations of working with George Lucas on filming the project. In 1990 he began filming his version of “The Lord of The Rings” in his parent’s basement, but the plug was pulled after he nearly burned down the house. Since then the storyteller has also written a full-length science fiction screenplay, a thriller novel and a second screenplay.
After graduating in Kinesiology from Arizona State University, J.R. returned to Downingtown, where his creative fires were re-stoked by his two beautiful daughters.
J.R. also endearingly considers his wife Lisa his muse. It was during their trip to Maine he began writing Exiled.
Now on the the FIVE QUESTIONS
1. Where did the spark of inspiration come from for Exiled?
I had a vision of the opening chapter and decided to write about it. Once I finished the chapter, I put the story aside for several months until it started poking the back of my brain telling me it wanted me to write more. Finally, I obliged and couldn’t stop until the story was told.
2. How many books are planned for The Never Chronicles?
I honestly have no idea. There are two written so far so I imagine there will be at least three. The story takes me where it wants to go -I am powerless to stop it. It could decide it’s finished one day and that would be it.
3. What is your solution to writer’s block?
I’m one of those people that people who get writer’s block love to hate. For some reason, it just doesn’t happen to me.
4. What are you reading right now?
5. Finally, Beatles or Rolling Stones?
Exiled will be released on June 5th.
Author blog: whatisthenever.blogspot.com