Rewrite Redemption is a YA romance with paranormal/sci-fi elements.
She's sixteen. He's seventeen. They don't know each other…at least not yet. She has a secret and her whole life revolves around keeping it. Every few months and with little warning, she simply disappears, pulled into the past for hours or even days. She's terrified it will happen in front of someone, changing her life forever. So far, the only witnesses have been her parents, and that didn't end well. She has no control over it and no idea why it happens to her.
She wants answers.
He has answers--at least he understands what's going on. He has a secret, too. He's part of an organization that goes back in time to rewrite reality. But he also has a problem. He broke the organization's number-one rule by altering his own timeline. As punishment, he's been blocked from time travel, which is most unfortunate. Because the changes he made to his timeline, accidentally resulted in disaster for his family. A disaster he's now prevented from repairing. No one can travel beneath the organization's radar except a Shadow. But they're rare, so rare he's never even met one.
Then he moves to her town.
J..H Walker"My life has been rather unconventional. Born insanely curious into an authoritarian, religious family, I know what it's like to not fit in. My teen years were a struggle, and I remember them in all their intensity. That's why I like writing for young adults.
I grew up in Central America, surrounded by jungle, and was never too far from the ocean. I observed other cultures, including an indigenous tribe that, at the time, had seen little of the modern world. While there, I slept in a hammock in a bamboo hut, dressed in tribal clothing, and helped bring three babies into the world in at the tender age of fourteen. I survived a hurricane aboard an ocean liner, canoeing through alligator infested waters, P.E., my brother's pet tarantulas, sky diving, parasailing over the Pacific shoreline, rock climbing, a ropes course blindfolded, and walking barefoot across hot coals. I'm not done having experiences.
I attended the University of Colorado, Boulder, but was so obsessed in my quest to understand human behavior; I left midstream to travel the country and study with people doing groundbreaking work in the field. I'm certified in Ericksonian Hypnosis, am a Master of Neuro-linguistic Programming and have worked with world-class athletes, including members of the U.S. Ski Team. I've completed advanced studies with some of the most brilliant minds of my time in the field of NLP and am a perpetual student of sociology and human behavior.
I live with my photographer husband in the foothills of the Colorado Rockies. I'm surrounded by trees. And I will always remain insanely curious."
A Little Q&A With J.H. Walker
Q: What was the inspiration behind this book?
I grew up in an extremely strict environment. Self-expression was not something encouraged in my house. Conformity and absolute adherence to a rigid ideology was the rule of the day. (The main reason why I never wrote early in life.) Since I lived in Central America, I wasn’t part of the mainstream American culture. I knew nothing about the real world and was totally unprepared to deal with it when I left home at eighteen. I’ve always wished I could go back in time and talk to my younger self, give her the benefit of the wisdom that begins to come with age. That desire led me to imagine a story about time travel.Q: Is there a particular theme or message you are trying to convey in your story? If so, what?
One of the most important lessons one can ever learn is that life isn’t fair. The sooner one comes to terms with this the better. Life isn’t fair. It just IS. Not to be a downer—I’m actually an optimist. But I’m also a realist and I’ve been around a while. The truth is that bad things happen to good people all the time…sometimes really horrible things. And when you understand that this is just part of life, it makes it easier to move through the bad times and on to something better.
We receive subtle messages from institutions like religion and icons like Santa Claus, that if we’re just good than good will follow. We will be blessed. But the facts don’t bear that out. Good, honest, and even deeply religious people have their share of unfortunate circumstances. And some of the most crooked despots on the planet are billionaires. But because of these subtle and usually subconscious messages, we tend to react in less than useful ways when bad luck befalls us. We get stuck in what I call a “wallowing-why-me mode” instead of making a plan to deal with the situation. I think this is particularly true of young adults, as they haven’t spent enough years on the planet to realize, “this too will pass.”
In this book, I wanted to include a simple strategy for dealing with what life throws at you. First, realize that life isn’t fair; it’s a mix of both good and bad. It is what it is. So when something bad happens, instead of freaking out, assess the situation and make a plan to deal with it or move through it. If you do this, you’re going to have a lot less heartache. And when good things happen, enjoy them. Celebrate.
Q: What's your next project?
I’m working on the sequel to Rewrite Redemption. In the epilogue, I left a clue as to something that wasn’t quite right. That something becomes paramount in the next book.
Q: Who is your favourite character to write?
I enjoy writing Lex. She’s bold, and she’s smart, and as A.J. says, “Pretty much fearless.” Her parents provide financial support, but that’s about all they give her. In spite of this, Lex has found a survival strategy that has allowed her to remain relatively psychologically healthy.
Her mother, an attorney, requires her to see a therapist once a week. (Lex says her mom is just establishing a paper trail in case anyone ever accuses her of neglect.) Early on, Lex realized that understanding people gave her a certain amount of power…and Lex likes power. So she utilized her “Shrinks” in a somewhat unique way. Since she had to be there an hour a week, she used that time to learn as much as she could about herself, her parents, her friends, and just people in general. It’s given her a unique perspective and a level of maturity uncommon at her age. She’s a loyal and true friend, but you don’t want to cross her. She’s who I would have liked to have been like when I was her age. So I suppose I get a little vicarious satisfaction writing for her character.
Q: What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I’m an artist and I’m very happy spending time in my studio. I’m also a political junkie, and I keep up with what’s going on in Washington. Things are very precarious in politics right now. We have a faction in Congress that doesn’t believe in science and that’s really scary. If we don’t do something about climate change soon, this planet is going to end up being one of those dystopian novels everyone loves so much. Reading a dystopian novel is one thing. Living in one…not so much.
Q: Tell me 3 things about yourself that's not connected to writing.
There was a time in my life when I was connected to the music world. I lived near Chicago. My then boyfriend had a lighting company and did lights for bands, including some big names. I had back-stage passes to all kinds of venues. I met a lot of interesting people and had some wild times. But I have to say, it’s a life that burns you out if you let it. I realized that and moved on for that very reason. I have some fond memories. But I’m way happier living a quieter life.
One of my first jobs was as a ward clerk at a VA hospital. I worked on the spinal cord ward. I saw firsthand the ramifications of war on those brave souls who serve their country. It was a life-changing experience and a big part of the reason I’m politically active. I absolutely support the troops, but these wars we keep getting into…not so much.
I’ve been in every state except Alaska, New Hampshire, Delaware, Vermont, and Maine. When I was a kid, every other year we’d return to the states for three months—a bennie for government workers living overseas. And in a van and a trailer, we’d traverse the country, visiting relatives and friends and national monuments. (Gas was way cheaper then.) We’d fly into Miami and then pick up our van in New Orleans. We had a trailer that we stashed with some missionary friend of my fathers. We’d start in Florida and go all the way up to northern Idaho by the Canadian border where my grandparents lived. And then we’d turn around and return by a different route.
We traveled very frugally, pretty much only stopping to see things that were free or relatively inexpensive. It could be pretty tense at times, eight people in a van and trailer for three months. But I’ve seen almost every amazing national treasure from the Grand Canyon and the Painted Desert to Mount Rushmore and Yellowstone. In hindsight I realize that seeing all those incredible sites contributed to me being an environmentalist today. We live in a beautiful country. It’s worth protecting.