When I first had the idea of inviting other authors to write stories in the world of the Juniper Wars, I was going for the biggest names I could find. My goal was to gather nos. And I got some really good nos from from really great authors. And I got a few awesome yeses as well.
But I wanted established people, or up and coming people. This project was about me giving back to writers who are awesome. But again, this was an invite-only situation and I wanted published authors.
Then J.D. Stone sent me his story. It would be his first published piece of fiction and I knew I had to say no. I couldn’t do it. It didn’t match my vision, right? But I was curious to see what he’d come up with.
I read the first paragraph, the first page, and then I felt myself swept away. I didn’t want to stop reading. It was long, but it was beautiful. It has this tragic sense of family and desperation, and the answer to the main story question made me cry. It was like Cormac McCarthy, in his early years, had written a Juniper Wars story.
I wanted to say no, but I couldn’t. I love this story so much. So here it is, the next story in The Juniper Tales Project. Enjoy.
Click here for Magpies by J.D. Stone (a zip file containing the *.mobi, *.epub, and *.PDF)
The Yellowstone Knockout of 2029 forced a flood of refugees to pour out of the western United States. They got out with their lives, but left behind a wealth of copper and other materials. Those willing to risk the lawless bandits and bleak desolation of the Juniper could stand to make a fortune, but for fifteen-year-old Tymonee Cuevas, her greatest adversary might be her own father.
Stone’s high-stakes tale of family and desperation will leave you guessing until the very end.
As a kid, J.D. Stone carefully searched every wardrobe and rabbit hole and kept a weather eye out for fairies he could shake down for dust. Alas, he passed into adulthood without successfully crossing realms, save only in the daydreams that
never stopped. After years of denial, he finally agreed to record his fantasies for posterity. This is his first published story.