Curious about how I started as a writer? Watch the talk I gave at AuthorMarketingLive14 in Cleveland, Ohio.

Healed by the written word

Want a story that’s rooted in a fundamental aspect of being human?

I believe reading dark fiction can be healing. My overriding mission is to connect with you through my art, and I hope to inspire you to do the same. I’m a word architect and driven visionary. I’m obsessed with heavy metal, horror films and technology. And I admire strong people who are not afraid to speak their mind.

I grew up in an Irish Catholic, working class family and was the first to go to college. I didn’t have expensive toys, so I used my own imagination for entertainment. And then I abused alcohol for entertainment. I spent the first thirty years of my life convincing myself I wasn’t an addict and the last ten worrying about all the potential threats the substances hid from me.

Anxiety and depression are always hiding in the corner, waiting to jump me when I start to feel happiness.

I had to break through family programming and accept the role of the black sheep. In my 30s I started writing horror and formed a heavy metal band while my family rolled their eyes, sighed and waited for the “phase” to end.

I spent years paralyzing myself with self-loathing and criticism, keeping my creativity smothered and hidden from the rest of the world. I worked a job I hated because that’s what Irish Catholic fathers do. They don’t express themselves, they pay the damn mortgage. I may have left my guilt and faith behind long ago, but the scars remain.

My creativity is my release, my therapy and my place to work through it all. I haven’t had a drink in a long time, but the anxiety and depression are always lurking. Writing novels and songs keeps it at bay. I scream over anxiety with my microphone and I turn my guitar up loud enough to drown out the whispers of self-doubt.

I hope to leave a legacy of art that will continue to entertain and enrich lives long after I’m gone. I want others to see that you don’t have to conform to the mainstream to be fulfilled.

Don’t be afraid of the dark. Embrace it.


J. Thorn is a Top 100 Most Popular Author in Horror, Science Fiction, Action & Adventure and Fantasy (Amazon Author Rank). He has published two million words and has sold more than 185,000 books worldwide. In March of 2014 Thorn held the #5 position in Horror alongside his childhood idols Dean Koontz and Stephen King (at #4 and #2 respectively). He is an official member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, the Horror Writers Association, and the Great Lakes Association of Horror Writers.

Thorn earned a B.A. in American History from the University of Pittsburgh and a M.A. from Duquesne University. He is a full-time writer, part-time professor at John Carroll University, co-owner of Molten Universe Media, podcaster, FM radio DJ, musician, and a certified Story Grid nerd.


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