My life was spent in all sorts of places among all sorts of different people, uprooted every year or three to move somewhere new and start over. That’s the military life, though, isn’t it? Never forming lasting relationships, never having to fully solve problems long-term, especially when it comes to other people... struggling to fit in everywhere I went and loving change like I was addicted (if I found myself in the bathroom with a pair of scissors and was feeling restless, I knew I was in trouble... my hair was getting chopped!). Restlessness.
Writing and making music were always my constants – the friends who wouldn’t betray, lose touch, or mysteriously disappear into the masses. The friends who never judged me and were there at 3:00 AM, a time when I am inevitably awake, especially when I’m obsessively working on something.
Consider this an introduction... Hi! I’m Jen. I love alternate dimensions, quantum theory, aliens, and creatures that were never thought of but I’ve seen in my dreams. Wormholes, spaceships, the capability of the consciousness to never disappear, just be transferred to another level of vibrational frequency... another level of existence. Cryptozoology, mythology, fantastical stories of gods and devils battling for the earth... but why is the earth so important, anyway?
Because we, as humans, deem it so... and we are the creators of these stories. Are some of them true? We may never know... but I love to dance in that field of possibility, somewhere in the fringes of everyone else’s opinions and things that most people don’t dare to seriously think about. It can be scary, after all.
Which brings me to something more important than just an introduction to my overactive imagination.... The human consciousness. Can it be altered? Can it be taken over and controlled? If so, does this have any effect on the human soul, the spirit? And can it be altered through an interdimensional disease? Yes, I just said interdimensional.
This is the reason I adore science fiction. The really tough, existential questions can be asked... possibilities are explored. Of course I write in other genres, too, but I’ve been intrigued with science fiction and paranormal stories (not the kind where a creature or other being falls in love with a human, though... way overdone at this point) for a long time, and watched countless hours of YouTube videos on the topics I am fascinated with as research. Sometimes my research leads me to something new and unexpected, which is even better because then I learn about something new and unexpected ;).
That was how the idea for my trilogy came about. When you’re looking up things like cryptozoology, Bigfoot encounters, and the Dover Demon on YouTube, you’re bound to collide with some other things you may never have heard of... like Morgellons disease (one video calls it “alien fibers”). Shadow people. (Which, as an aside, have you ever noticed the uncanny resemblance of real-life accounts of shadow people wearing fedoras to the observers from Fringe... or the guys in The Adjustment Bureau? What’s with the hats? Funny coincidence... or maybe I wasn’t the only person inspired by the shadow people phenomenon...?) And then there are the conspiracy theories surrounding these phenomena.
As I delved deeper into the world of Morgellons, an idea began to form. Once that idea took hold, my brain started working through plots and events and storylines... brainstorming is an amazing rush for me, so the more excited I got, the bigger the idea got. Brainstorming gets even more awesome when you talk to likeminded people about an idea, and the idea grew even bigger. Now I have a science fiction conspiracy thriller with elements of romance and references to food during some scenes because I happen to love cooking great food ;).
These things are all very interesting for me to think about and talk about. Wild speculation on some levels, but the possibilities... oh, the possibilities! I wanted to broach some of these topics before plugging my book, that way if you were bored to tears or weirded out within the first few paragraphs, you wouldn’t end up here, toward the end of this guest post ;).
Imagine this. Your skin begins breaking out in ulcerous sores that don’t want to heal no matter what you try. From these sores, you pull tiny strings that seem to be blue, black, red, or white, some of them in clumps or clusters surrounded by a hard, crystal-like shell. You go to the hospital, but they throw you in the psych ward, claiming that what you have is delusional parasitosis. You know you’re not crazy... you just can’t get them to take a closer look. Why?
This is what happens to Anna Reynolds and she has no idea what to think. Would you?
If you’d like to receive excerpts of Fibers, book #1 in the Infiltration Trilogy, directly to your email, I invite you to sign up for my author newsletter. I plan to send out 12 excerpts that you can either read yourself or listen to/watch me read (don’t worry; I don’t have an obnoxious voice or anything, although I am a little bit of a goofball... I think that’s just my “incurable optimist” showing). I won’t spam you, but you’ll also receive my blog posts and news on when my book is available for free on the Kindle, contests, when the sequels come out, and maybe some other projects I’m working on. You definitely shouldn’t subscribe if you don’t like me, although I’m told I’m a very amiable person =).
No matter what you decide, I hope this post makes you think... about your soul, your consciousness, and what worlds you may be visiting in your dreams... if you remember your dreams. Apparently there aren’t that many of us ;).
Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy your week!
About the novel:
Anna Reynolds is caught up in the middle of a secret interdimensional government agreement... and she doesn't even know it.
There's a medical anomaly loosely dubbed Morgellons disease afflicting a number of people. Symptoms include open sores that produce colorful string-like fibers, fatigue, and nightmarish visions of shadowy figures. No one knows where it came from. No one knows what causes it. There is no cure.
When Anna begins having nightmares and waking hallucinations of the shadow people, her uneasiness about her condition grows. Enlisting the help of her doctor and some friends, Anna is determined to find out what's really going on and why Morgellons is such a mystery.
With her health declining and doubts about whom she can trust, is Anna doomed to become a slave to her condition? Or will she and her unlikely group of would-be heroes come through, saving her... and, ultimately, the world?
Standing slowly with her palm pressed to her eye, she spotted a tiny clump on the counter not far from the tweezers. It looked like balled up blue and red string wrapped in eye goo. But when she touched it gingerly with her fingertip, it felt hard, similar to rock or crystals. She turned off the water.
Not wanting to leave this cluster of strange unattended, she picked up the tweezers again and pinched the whole mess between the tips. Cupping her left hand underneath, she took it to a kitchen counter and turned on the overhead light.
Squinting her hazel eyes, she poked at the tiny mass with the tip of the tweezers, suddenly wishing she had another pair.
“What the hell are you...?” she muttered under her breath, trying to keep her breathing shallow so she wouldn’t accidentally exhale it away and lose it. She noted that her eye felt perfectly fine. A little sore, but not bad. She decided to get a toothpick from the silverware drawer and pinched the balled up fibers in the tips of the tweezers again. Just in case.
As she loosened the tweezers and brought the toothpick closer to the tear duct excretion, she watched the blue string she had pulled on stretch itself slowly toward the wood.
“No way,” she muttered, moving the wooden toothpick closer. She moved it left, then right... each time she moved it, the tiny string followed. She saw the red one poking out from the tangled mass, too, and she dropped the tweezers and the toothpick, stepping back and taking a deep breath as she cupped her hand over her mouth.
About the author:
Jennifer-Crystal Johnson is originally from Germany, but was raised an Army brat. She has published one novella under her former last name, The Outside Girl: Perception is Reality (Publish America, 2005 - out of print as of 2013); a poetry book, Napkin Poetry (Broken Publications, 2010); and a collection of poetry, art, and prose called Strangers with Familiar Faces (Broken Publications, 2011). She's also published a collection of short creature horror stories called If You're Human Don't Open the Door (Broken Publications, 2012), a personal development book called The Ten Pillars of a Happy Relationship (Broken Publications, 2014), and a collection of more horror stories (no creatures this time, just people) called Our Capacity for Evil (Broken Publications, 2015).
She has several poems and short stories published on Every Writer's Resource and has recently published a science fiction novel called Fibers, the first book in the Infiltration Trilogy. Jen owns and operates Broken Publications and publishes an annual anthology to raise awareness about domestic violence called Soul Vomit. When she isn't writing or editing, she enjoys playing games with her three kids, watching crime shows on Netflix, or reading. She lives in WA State with her three children, three cats, and a crazy puppy named Thor.
You can connect with her at her website, Twitter, and Facebook.