Thursday, March 3, 2011

Meet JR Turner

Award-winning author J.R. Turner lives in Central Wisconsin with her husband and three children. She began writing in high school, and after a decade working as a commercial artist, started her first novel in 1999. Aside from crafts, camping and cooking, she loves holidays. A favorite is Halloween, a combination of spooky supernatural fun and chocolate. Visit her at to learn more!

JR Turner is the author of a series that will appeal to middle grade children:

All over, American children are crying out, "I don't like to read!" Many of them simply cannot read. On March 1, 2011, Echelon Press will launch 'Electric Shorts' for reluctant readers.

Electric Shorts is a pilot program for reluctant readers. Each series contains six short stories presented once per month as electronic downloads (eBooks), much the same as a television series. Geared for kids between the ages of seven and seventeen, each short story will include relevant material to attract and captivate the young and reluctant reader. From historical settings to future fantasy, across all genres, Electric Shorts will strive to satisfy all interests.

"By publishing the Electric Shorts as eBooks we can cut back our contribution of paper waste and perhaps save a few trees while we're at it," says Karen Syed. Echelon Press has been offering their titles as eBooks since the company formed in February 2001. "No heavy books to carry, nothing to clutter the shelves, and eBooks really are cool," Syed says.

A group of authors from across America have signed on to the project. The Electric Shorts will be released every Tuesday, with a new installment of each series appearing once a month. At only $.99 each, the short stories are affordable for all walks of life. Once the pilot program proves successful, Echelon will open to general submissions for the new imprint. Plans to create affiliate programs with schools and other literacy advocates are in the works, including a summer reading program to keep kids on track during vacation.

To obtain a complete listing of authors, concepts, and series please contact Echelon Press.

For advance review copies and requests for interviews and author events for any of the participating authors, contact Karen L. Syed at Echelon Press

Here's an overview of the series:

Delbert Dallas turned twelve and got the coolest gift ever, an electric guitar. His father is a cartoon composer and his mom is an officer in the United States Army. His older brother Damien is a know-it-all who has to go first and his younger brother Dougie always gets his way. To escape them both, he’ll learn to play his guitar like a rock star and free Barbecue Bob, the dragon, living inside.

Walter Wheeler is mad. Held back two grades, ignored at home, he wants to take over the world. When he gets a magical viola for his fourteenth birthday, he finds his own dragon, Firebrand, one he can ride to anywhere, and to any time. If he changes the past, he could change his future, but most of all, his present.

To unleash the dragons and travel through time they must play the exact right melodies. Only an immortal, a mage, a man called Matthew has the sheet music that will take them all on wild and dangerous adventures through time.

#1: Voyage to Viking Island—Release Date: March 22nd.

When the new guitar Delbert Dallas got for his birthday turns into a dragon named Barbecue Bob, the adventures are just beginning. First stop—Viking Island where Prince Rolloff is running away from his wedding—at the age of twelve. A Viking afraid of a girl? Even more shocking is Rolloff’s new best friend.

Walter Wheeler, a bully held back two grades, has discovered his own time-traveling dragon, Firebrand. When the prince offers a bag full of gold to get him off the island, Walter happily accepts, once he hears the plan is to escape on the royal longboat. Not only will he take Rolloff’s gold, he’ll take all the treasure on board.

Can Delbert convince Prince Rolloff that Walter Wheeler is no valiant Viking in shining armor? How do you explain a dragon named Bob to a Prince? What will happen when the rival dragons meet snout to snout? Find out in the first adventure of Delbert Dallas and the Dragon Diaries.

Each story in the series will be released on the 22nd of each month:

#2 Civil War Skirmish

#3 Viva La Francine!

#4 Meltdown in Marathon

#5 Don’t Dis the Danish

#6 Genghis Kahn Do It!


  1. Thanks for being my guest today, JR. I think the series sounds like a great idea!

  2. Great sounding series, and the target readership is a worthy reason to write books for. Best of luck with this, we need more YA writers to instill a love of reading in our youth.

    Marvin D Wilson

  3. Thank you so much, Marvin and Nancy!! I really appreciate your time and I'm really excited about this series!


  4. What a neat idea to encourage reluctant readers, J R. Good luck to you. May many children become readers because of your books.

  5. I'm horrified by the notion of children crying out that they don't like to read. I can't even imagine a childhood (for myself or my children) without books and that broadened sense of the world (this one, and imaginary ones) that reading provides. Anything that can help and encourage reluctant readers has got to be a good thing.

  6. Electric Shorts--what a great idea!

  7. I love the blurbs JR. These stories are creative and fun.

  8. It was great to learn about JR Turner's series. It sounds very interesting.

  9. What a wonderful description of your series. Best wishes for your continued success.

    Children’s Author
    Write What Inspires You Blog
    The Golden Pathway Story book Blog
    Donna M. McDine’s Website

  10. Jenny, your series sound fantastic, especially geared toward the reluctant MG reader. I wish you much success with them!