Hi! I’m Jessica/Jess and I am a human. I write poetry and urban fantasy. I am REALLY into self-publishing. Right now, I have one poetry collection and one hybrid text for sale on Amazon (shameless plug) and lots of yummy fiction that will be coming out in 2018 and 2019.
I have a BA in Sociology from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College. I am extremely shy and introverted but I really like figuring out why people behave the way they do, however, I studied Sociology for monetary purposes. I was assured I would be able to get a job doing anything, anywhere with my BA. That was back in 2008 and they lied. So when I wanted (read: needed an excuse to defer my BA student loans) to go back to school for a Master’s, I wanted to do something fun. And it was amazing.
I have had several day jobs to help support my writing and my bills. I have been a truck driver, college English teacher, library technician (not a librarian), retail drone, and market research recruiter. In the fall of 2017, I had one of those fuck-it-I’m-going-to-try-this moments (similar to the moment I decided to learn how to drive an 18-wheeler) and enrolled in a Phlebotomy Certification program. I am terrified of needles. I have 10 tattoos and several piercings. I’m still terrified of needles. I was that little kid you heard screaming from down the hall while you chilled out in the waiting room at the doctor’s office. Now, as an adult, I just whimper and shake uncontrollably.
One of the most important life lessons I’ve learned is you need to run towards the things you are afraid of. Obviously, not burning buildings if you are afraid of fire, but when you want something and you’re afraid to go get it, you need to go get it anyway. This is especially true with writing. Writing is a scary thing, you have thoughts and you want to express them but then all the BUTs and SELF-DOUBT and REJECTIONS come in and those can really weigh a person down. Then you have your relationship to your own thoughts, do you let them live or die. Do they make you feel safe in your own skin? Even if the answer is no and writing is still something you really, really want to do, you need to do it.
I wanted a job that would sustain my writing. The other jobs were okay but didn’t support my writing or my bills as much as I needed them to. Either I made enough money to live off of but I had zero time to write, or I had all the time (and motivation) in the world to write but I couldn’t feed myself. I am now a gainfully employed phlebotomist and I treat the people I stick very well. When the needle is out of my hand and pointed at me it’s a different story but now I’m digressing.
So, I’m a writer and a phlebotomist. Phlebotomy lets me do nifty things like pay artists to make book covers, have my own domain name on this website, hire proofreaders and copy editors to catch all the typos, etc.
I’ve lived in two really cool places in the world: Panamá and the UK. I had cheese scones at Stonehenge and piña coladas out of hollowed-out pineapples in a hotel that no longer exists on a teeny tiny island in the Pacific. I really miss that hotel. I also made friends with a pretty awesome parrot. I was born in Arkansas, USA and I still live in the American South; though every few years I migrate with my husband, Mr. J. Migration is part of life, so are wonderful spouses who put up with neurotic writers.
I have three wonderful cats. They are my children and aside from wanting treats every morning and cleaning out the poop box, I don’t have to take care of them. One of them is a great snuggle buddy, the other two couldn’t care less if I were dead or alive, except when treat time rolls around, then they love me.