J. Kilburn


J. Kilburn's narrative style has been compared to those of Joyce Carol Oates, Virginia Wolfe, D.H. Lawrence, Hunter S. Thompson, and Nell Zink. His subjects and almost cinematic descriptions of setting have earned his work comparison to movies and television shows like Sons of Anarchy, Tin Star, Twin Peaks, and Thelma and Louise. Prior to Heaven's Door, a Novel and BEFORE, Kilburn's other published work was a feature-length investigative news article that got the whole page in his community newspaper.

Kilburn lives a quiet and private life on the shore of America's sixth Great Lake. He has lived and worked in Vermont, Massachusetts, Illinois, and Minnesota. During these travels, Kilburn has dabbled in law enforcement, private security, emergency medicine, truck driving, and horse-logging. Other occupations have included at-risk youth mentor, big-city process server, park ranger, and industrial wastewater treatment operator. Along the way, he's pedaled to 14,000 feet above sea-level in a major bicycle race, been marooned overnight on a deserted island, ridden a motorcycle from Chicago to Thunder Bay, and hiked Vermont's highest peaks to watch sunsets on both the longest and coldest days of the year. He currently maintains plastics processing machinery for a major manufacturing company. When not at work he and his wife enjoy life around a little urban farm complete with greenhouse, garden, and mini-barn. Their current flock is composed of four chickens and a cat named Sierra Feral.

Smashwords Interview

When did you first start writing?
I started writing some short stories back in the 90's, just for my own enjoyment. Some of them were well-received in the confines of home. The subject were varied; humor, tragedy, God. I sent one out to a magazine; this magazine had an editorial policy of returning un-used manuscripts after not more than 60 days. They held on to mine for 6 months, which I took as a compliment.
What's the story behind your latest book?
There are multiple stories all interwoven into one plot. Some tragic, some merely informative: a biker war up in the neighboring provice captured headlines off and on for years; a body found beside a road here in Vermont; a person gone missing; a body found in a basement of a falling-in farmhouse. There was a common thread: voilence, loss, death, grief, tragedy. I decided to follow that thread, heavily fictionalize it, and devote it to the victims. You will see that the story is both thrilling and cautionary; I do that to make it entertaining in order to keep the reader's interest, but the notes of caution are there, nevertheless. That was hard to do correctly - I'll have to let you, the reader, let me know if I got it right.
Read more of this interview.


Before, a Novel
Price: $6.99 USD. Words: 180,300. Language: English. Published: February 20, 2022. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary, Fiction » Coming of age
(5.00 from 1 review)
Think you know the kids next door? Think again! BEFORE both celebrates and indicts the sweet and sordid in small-town, everyday life. This Crime Fiction and Coming-of-Age mashup by J. Kilburn will leave you howling... while the questions and answers posed by this novel will have you re-examining the sunny streets and wildflower-filled lanes of your own neighborhood. 500 pages of adventure!
Heaven's Door, a Novel
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 47,570. Language: English. Published: April 29, 2020. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Crime thriller, Fiction » Historical » Canada
InD'Tale Magazine gives this noir crime thriller FOUR STARS!!!! Heaven's Door, a Novel, by J. Kilburn, is the story of a Girl accidentally caught up in big-city organized crime and an undercover police officer tasked with infiltrating an outlaw biker gang. The book introduces the fictional TOPDOGS Motorcycle Club, its members, and their victims in a "heart-stopping tale" of intrigue and suspense.