Meet J Douglas Burton

This week I’d like you to meet J Douglas Burton; author of Straw Soldiers and Red Cross, the first two books in the Sleepwar Saga; The Star Travels Of Dr. Jeremiah Fothering-Smythe, a series of novellas; and many more.

Book Two of The Sleepwar Saga

The nightmare begins again.

Just when Andy thought it was safe to get back into bed, it happens again. Plucked from the safety of his home, high school star quarterback Andy Flashman is thrown into a chase with deadly consequences.

The boy. The boy with the powers. If Andy and friends don’t find him before the enemy does, it won’t just be his life on the line. He, Kaz, Jason, Meesha, Samir and Pegah must scour a creepy hospital every night until they find the boy.

No one is safe.

Red Cross, book 2 of J. Douglas Burton’s “Sleepwar Saga” is tense, thrilling, and laugh-out-loud funny. Don’t miss out!

J Douglas Burton is a clever pseudonym for real-life human being ‘James Douglas Burton’ who hopes you’ll never find out his real name.

Although born in the United States of America, Burton actually grew up on the bonnie shores of Scotland (and inland, as well) but moved back to the States as soon as he could afford it. Sorry Scotland.

Currently he resides in Lincoln, Nebraska, where he hopes to become a recognized author. Or even just recognized. Seriously, even his friends barely remember who he is.

Besides YA series “The Sleepwar Saga”, he is the writer of several novellas available for the Kindle, including “The Star Travels of Dr. Jeremiah Fothering-Smythe” whose six installments are also available in collected versions both for the Kindle and in actual paperback form which you can hold in your hands and everything.

1. Tell us a little about you and what you’re working on.

I’m J Douglas Burton (call me JD!) and I’m an American author from Scotland (long story). My current project is a clockpunk Regency novel in the vein of Jane Austen with an air of Philip K Dick to it.

It will be called: Cogs & Cognizance.

You As A Reader

2. When did you first fall in love with books?

Literally before my earliest memory.

I learned to read at 3, and read my first novel by myself at 4 (The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe).

Books have always been one of the most important things in my life.

3. What’s your favorite book from your childhood?

Gosh. A toss-up between The Hobbit and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Both were read frequently, and delighted my imaginative young mind. But since The Hobbit also made me cry, maybe I’ll give the nod to that one?

4. Of the books you’ve read, which one changed you the most?

Not counting The Bible (as I think we’re discussing fiction) I would say most likely David Eddings’s The Belgariad. (A five-book series telling one story, so I’m counting it.)

I’d never fallen so in love with fictional people before. Garion and Ce’Nedra especially are as important to me as my own family members. Possibly more so.

5. What’s the last book you read and your current favorite?

Last book? Malignant by Emily Kazmierski, which I’d definitely recommend.

My current and perennial favorite is Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita – the greatest single thing the English language has produced and one which justifies its invention single-handedly.

(Hyperbole? Not a whit!)

6. If you could meet any author, alive or dead, who would it be?

Philip K Dick on one of his non-paranoid days. How I’d love to trade ideas with someone so endlessly full of them!

You As A Writer

7. When did you first know you were a writer?

I’ve always written; or, as far back as I can remember.

But when did I know I was a writer? Hmmmm…

In college some time, I suppose, when I began to seriously develop screenplays.

Screenplays are still my first love as I understand and gravitate to film structure so much more than that of novels, for some reason.

8. Do you remember the first story you ever wrote? If so, what was it about?

Afraid not! It would have been a two-sentence one in playschool (i.e. before Primary 1) I imagine.

For American readers, Primary 1 is First Grade.

The earliest I can recall any details of was in primary school at some juncture, involving me becoming an owl then waking up to discover feathers on my bed.

I was marked down for the “it was all a dream” cliche – followed by the age-old “or was it?” twist.

9. What has been the most difficult part of your writing journey? The best part?

Most difficult? Writing!

Best? Not writing!

10. Of all the writing advice you’ve received, what helped you the most?

The simplest and yet most helpful piece of advice is the oft-given but ever-true:

“Get on your ass and just write, for God’s sakes!”

Nothing else comes close to being as useful.

11. Tell us about your current project and any others you’re working on.

Cogs & Cognizance is about a young woman in 1796 named Hattie Casterbridge, who lives in a version of England where clockwork technology has become so sophisticated and ubiquitous that it rules everyday life.

When an attack on a local clockwork manufactory results in the owner’s suicide, Hattie tries to investigate but is turned away from doing so by the Clockwork Oversight Committee due to a combination of personal bias and sexism.

Not to be deterred, Hattie chooses to stick her nose in anyway, and butts up against the wealthy man her mother would like to marry her off to. Annoyed by this Mr Somersby fellow, but finding herself on the same side as him, she gets caught up in a deadly struggle against an enemy with a lethal world view – and may have to change her views about technology when one piece of physical evidence might prove to have a literal mind of its own.

Fun Stuff About You

12. Besides writing and reading, what are some of your other interests?

I like to write and perform music – but I suppose that still involves “writing”!

I adore TV and movies – even if I have little time for either these days – and especially enjoy watching anime. Your Lie in April is one of the best TV series ever made.

13. If you could become an instant expert at any one thing, what would it be and why?


I love cooking, and wish I was better at it.

14. You’ve just won an all expenses paid trip to anywhere in the world. Where would you go?


I’m theoretically learning to speak Japanese (although I haven’t looked at a lesson in ages!) and would love to visit – especially the countryside (though Tokyo or Osaka might be fun to go to as well).

I’m a super picky eater, so wouldn’t wish to stay long, as it would be difficult to find enough Japanese food that suits my tastes to sustain me for very much time!

Final Thoughts

15. How can people connect with you?

Twitter mainly: @jdouglasburton

You can drop me an e-mail at: – if you like.

Or hey, why not leave a comment on my blog? The website is:

16. Anything else you’d like to tell us?

I shot a man in Reno, just to watch him die.

(Okay, that’s a Johnny Cash song, but it makes me sound cool and dangerous so I’m claiming it.)

Thanks for sharing a little about you! I’m thoroughly sucked into the Sleepwar Saga, so I’ll just tootle on back to the ever so delightful Kaz and the rest of the gang as soon as I’m done here.

Seriously, people. Read it. It’s addicting. I’m even putting the link right here to make it super easy to find.

Straw Soldiers (The Sleepwar Saga, Book 1)

Red Cross (The Sleepwar Saga, Book 2)
Enter The Unknown (The Star Travels Of Dr. Jeremiah Fothering-Smythe, Book 1)

2 thoughts on “Meet J Douglas Burton

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