Happy Release Day: Crossroads by Jonathan Lister + Author Guest Post!

Jonathan Lister has kindly agreed to guest post here about his work, and share his inspiration for becoming a writer in honor of his newest release, Crossroads.


 About The Author:
Jonathan Lister is a full-time writer with work appearing in outlets of USA Today, The Houston Chronicle and many others. A graduate of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University, he’s waited an unspeakable amount of tables en route to having the career he wants, and the ability to the tell stories he loves. Crossroads is Jonathan’s first book-length work of fiction. He currently lives in the Philadelphia area and continues to drink too much coffee.

Jonathan Lister on the Web:
Twitter | Official Page | Goodreads | Facebook
 Guest Post:

I blame my father for making me a writer. No, he wasn’t a lyrical genius or particularly art inclined one way or the other. He knew what he liked, and he shared those joys with his children. That’s how I ended up hearing recordings of old radio shows, including Sherlock Holmes and The Shadow. These are foundational, even subliminal moments of development that result in stuff just being there. Vocabulary certainly, even perhaps a latent desire to sip woody alcohols with a single ice cube floating in them. Who knows? The point is, as it usually is, that the fault of my career rests firmly with the pater familias.
And that brings me no end of satisfaction.
There was no signal cataclysmic moment where I said, “Aha! So that’s what words are for!” I was always a writer. Well, a baby first, a toddler for 10 to 15 years after, and then a writer. My first story appeared when I was in 3rd grade, and perfect timing too – needed it to pass 3rd grade English. The stories that interested me were always those with an epic element, characters struggling against evil in its purest forms, impossible odds, the world on the brink of destruction, one chance to save it all or lose everything in the process. And Star Wars. If it didn’t have a Lightsaber in it you might as well not waste your time entertaining the child that was I.
Inventing stories and characters was the most fun I could imagine having. Creating a world for these new people to live in, deciding how they interacted with one another, the struggles each faced. That was exciting for me even as a teenager. In 10th grade I showed an English teacher a story I’d written as proof that I hadn’t plagiarized a paper for class. Those really were my words on the page. Then in college a professor told me I could go to graduate school for creative writing. Had no idea that was an actual thing, but I leapt at the chance.
And the rest, as they say, is a wine-fueled romp through the mountains where I convinced myself I was dead and vowed never to eat whatever the hell it was those hippies told me to eat between giggles and slaps on the bongo drum.
What I get to do every day is amazing. Entertaining people and watching them become engrossed in the stories that I’ve whipped up is a humbling experience; one that I don’t take lightly. Thanks for your time.
About The Book:

Crossroads CoverTitle: Crossroads
Author: Jonathan Lister
Publication Date: November 4, 2013
Publisher: J. Taylor Publishing

Werewolf. Bar bouncer. Dad. Standard traits for any self-respecting, reformed criminal, living under the radar in Demos City. For Leon Gray, normal is what he wants — for himself and his not-yet-changed teenage daughter.

Playing bodyguard to crusading reporter David Hastings would totally ruin Leon’s peace, especially since Hastings has hired killers on his trail, pros who know how he takes his espresso in the morning, and where Leon lives.

The payoff, though, would fill up Shauna’s empty college fund, and in a battle between opportunity and ordinary, money wins. He just has to keep Hastings alive long enough to cash the check.

If only he didn’t have to save his daughter, too.

As a budding wolf, she’s piqued the interest of a local pack Alpha — one Leon knows will steal Shauna right out from under him the first chance he gets.

Leon isn’t about to give up on his daughter or Hastings, and will fight for both longer than it took Demos City to see werewolves as equals to humans.

He can only hope it doesn’t take a thousand years.


Find Crossroads Online:
Book Excerpt:


The Bouncer
Breaking a beer bottle over someone’s head rarely knocks them unconscious. Oh, it’s going to hurt like hell, probably make a good-sized gash in the scalp but hardly ever just a quick dose of shut-eye. What they’ll end up with is a wound that looks a lot worse than it actually is. The best an opponent can hope for is the element of surprise and the moments of disorientation that the hit causes. If the bastard is serious about it, he can use the jagged edges of broken glass to do some real damage. A shame this isn’t a Western. When a beer bottle connects with a cowboy’s head in one of those old movies, he hits the floor in a few seconds.
I’m not a cowboy. I’m something else.
“Gray! Watch out!” Jenny shouts from behind the bar, but I already know Frank is coming. Guy lost his job last week—ten years as a call center supervisor. He’s been in here every night since. Now he’s drunk enough to think I’m the reason his company shipped his job off to the Philippines.
It’s taking him forever to swing that damn bottle at me; I’m getting bored.
He’s harmless on most nights, talks a lot about how he’d like to blow up his old work, but ends up passing out in his car. People in front of me are pointing and shouting over the din of music and bar talk, obviously trying to warn me. It’s the whiskey’s fault Frank is coming after me. That doesn’t mean I can make an exception. Everyone in here knows the rules, knows what’s coming.
The bottle connects with the back of my head and shatters. I don’t move. Broken glass sticks in my hair, even draws some blood. I let the pain run down my back along with the cheap beer and hold my breath until the shouting sting fades to a grumbling throb.
Yep—hurts like hell.
“Fuck you, Leon!” Frank shouts. His breath is acrid and brimming with rye as it washes over my neck. Its scent tells me how much alcohol is in his blood. In all the movies Frank has ever probably seen, it’s only supposed to take one hit, so I know he’s is waiting for me to fall down. In fact, he’s probably praying I fall because no way he’s got a next move planned.
A bar that was roaring with life a moment ago is all spectators, front-row seat types. Most everyone in here knows me, knows what I am. Frank does, too; it’s why he needs to quit the whiskey. The pool tables are quiet. No one’s playing darts, not even bringing glasses to their lips. There are no footsteps on the hardwood floors. The customers are all a mixture of bloodlust and pity, waiting to see what my first move is going to look like. The bell sounds in my head as I turn around.
This is the fun part of my job.


Happy reading until next time!