Hi R.J! Tell us something about yourself, and your writing career.
I am a left handed, dyslexic author who can’t stand to read, drinks far more than he should, and believes he has heard divinity speaking to him. I began writing in 2009 and was signed by eTreasures Publishing in 2011for my series called, The Pelagius Game. (Please do not call the men in white coats to take me away)
The third book in the Pelagius Game series. This book follows former priest turned vampire, Timothy Anderson and Scottish warrior, Scott McCree, as they battle evil in an attempt to bring balance back to the Church, and win the Pelagius Game for God’s side.
What's the best part about writing a Fantasy book?
There are no character rules to break when you write fantasy. If I want my hero to have wings, a pig’s snout and an Asian leprechaun as a companion, I can do it. Is there such thing as an Asian Leprechaun? I might have to create that.
How many books have you published so far?
I have two book published so far, Valstain and Born Villain.
What is the Pelagius Game?
Imagine a chess game between God and Satan. Valstain is the game board and the heroes and villains are the game pieces. Tim believes he is the only piece left alive on God’s team. To survive, he must find the sword of the spirit in order to kill his remaining enemies. But the weapon is on Holy ground and he is a vampire. How is he going to do that?
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Don't be distracted by negative reviews. Remember, the only taste of success some people have is when they take a bite out of you.
Do you have particular writing techniques or tricks you use to improve your writing?
In all honesty, I will find a quiet space and meditate for about 20 minutes before I write. I do this so that I am clear of all the distractions called thinking, coping and managing. Once inspiration speaks to me, I will poor myself a drink of either Absinthe, red wine, or a craft beer, and I will just let go. Then I write.
Do you use beta readers?
I don’t know what that is. Is that the thing VCR’s replaced back in the day?
Do you use any professional services (ie. Editor, cover designer etc) or do you do everything on your own?
eTreasures Publishing does all of my editing and art work. And thank God for that. My spelling is atrocious. (Yes folks, I spelled atrocious wrong 3 times before I gave up and used spell check.)
The Pelagius Game: Compelling New Fiction Series Fuses Secret Religion & Biblical Events with Bold New Fantasy World.
Written by R. J. Jerome, ‘The Pelagius Game’ marks a powerful new chapter in the world of fantasy fiction. The series’ first volume, ‘Valstain’, introduces readers to a magical realm between Heaven and Earth. Offering such a vivid literary adventure, the series is poised to resonate with readers around the world.
Through The Pelagius Game series, R.J. Jerome introduces the reader to Valstain, the magical realm between Heaven and Earth.
Valstain follows the life of Timothy Anderson as he reveals his haunted past to Father Michael Olshefski, the new headmaster of The Pelagius Order. The Order’s seminary is the training ground of a secret religious society whose job is to find and prepare gifted warriors to fight evil.
But someone on the inside has a different idea.
Now, Tim must expose the true wicked desires of the Order’s leaders to the kidnapped priest. He needs this man’s trust and permission to enter the Holy ground so he may once more venture into Valstain and claim his revenge on those who betrayed him. However, Tim knows mere words will not convince the priest—only tasting the memories locked inside his magical blood will.
It is said once a man has entered Valstain, and experienced the horror within, he is never the same again—that is exactly what the forces of evil are depending on. The Pelagius Game has begun, and the journey into Valstain is only the beginning.
Valstain is a must read for anyone interested in fantasy adventures with plenty of sword fights, vibrant characters, and intricate plot twists.
As the author explains, his book’s setting plays host to a diverse range of happenings and experiences.
“Valstain is unique because it blends Earthly mysteries like secret religious societies and biblical events with a fantasy world where one can be seen battling giant spiders or the undead with magical weapons and super natural abilities, like strength, speed, ability to manipulate the weather or fire,” says Jerome.
Continuing, “I spend most of my free time researching religion. I once attended a class in Catholicism where I saw two priests whispering. This spawned the idea for ‘The Pelagius Game’ and I spent the next four years constructing narratives for four books.”
With much of writing based on diligently-researched fact, it comes as no surprise that the series’ title carries much significance to the real world.
“I remembered stumbling across Pelagianism, a theological theory named after the British monk, Pelagius. Pelagius practiced first to demonstrate the power and quality of human nature and to show what it is capable of achieving. With this in mind, I constructed the idea of a competition between God and Satan. Want to know more? Buy the book!” Jerome adds.
With such a powerful initial offering and many more volumes to come, interested readers are urged to purchase their copies of the series’ first book as soon as possible.
‘The Pelagius Game: Book 1 Valstain’, published by eTreasures Publishing, is available now.
Born Villain: 2nd Volume of ‘The Pelagius Game’ Series, Hailed “Epic Fantasy” by Critics, Throws Readers into Immortal Heroes’ Battle to Save the Church
R.J. Jerome’s ‘The Pelagius Game: Born Villain’ continues a thrilling literary concept that melds vivid high fantasy with real-world Biblical mystery. Volume one rapidly became a bestseller and, with readers chomping at the bit to dive back into the narrative’s magical realm between Heaven and Earth, Jerome is now back with book two. As with the first, don’t expect convention.
Born Villain, the second book in the series, continues the journey of immortal heroes, Timothy Anderson and Scott McCree, as they battle evil in an attempt to bring balance back to the Church, and win the Pelagius Game for God’s side. Together, they unite, vowing to stop Pope Orlandis’ evil plan in becoming the ultimate ruler of Earth. But in Orlandis’ idea of a perfect world, something else sinister was rising from the darkness, something with an unquenchable thirst to release the mother of all sin.
The Pelagius Game series is a must read for anyone interested in fantasy adventures with plenty of sword fights, vibrant characters, and intricate plot twists.
“There’s no real way to compartmentalize this book or series,” explains the author. “It boasts all the hallmarks of intricate fantasy, while also attempting to explore many of the mysteries that exist in the Biblical world. As mentioned, I was inspired after witnessing two priests whispering very intently at a class on Catholicism, and my mind started racing with the possibilities that could make up their conversation. Perhaps it was about something they didn’t want the rest of humanity to hear?!” Continuing, “Initial feedback to this second installment has been overwhelmingly positive, and I’m fiercely writing volume three. There’s still plenty to explore.”
Jerome isn’t exaggerating, his readers have praised the book with five-star success. Veronica comments, “What an epic fantasy tale filled with mystery and intrigue! I absolutely loved it! I am a huge fan of this genre of fantasy writing and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised by how good this story was. It is of the same quality as any of the big fantasy realm stories such as "Lord of The Rings" or "The Hunger Games". The characters have been brilliantly developed... each with its own unique identity and aura. The story line flows nicely with plenty of twists and turns and cliff hanger moments that keep you fully engaged. All in all this was a great book that kept my imagination locked in. 5 big stars!”
Another reader adds:
I loved the first book but this book is even better. I can't wait for the next
R.J. Jerome grew up in historic Bristol, Pennsylvania, where his love of art, music, and fantasy novels was born.
After graduation, Russ left America for 6 months, and traveled to England. It was there that he saw the Gloucester Cathedral. The massive, gothic architecture fueled his interest in spirituality.
Usually religious art or stories inspire Russell's work, but on occasion, you will find him fumbling through a page of one of R.A. Salvatore's epic fantasy novels.
In 2000, Russ married his wife Jennifer, who gave birth to their son Russell in 2004 and their daughter Tessa in 2007. When not busy researching religions, you can find Russell drinking, rating, or talking about well-crafted beers and Absinthes.