About Jay

About Jay Penner

I have always wanted to write. I had a couple of stalled attempts in 2010 and 2013, trying to venture into a genre in which I have an interest but not sufficient world-building experience. Finally, in 2018, I began to outline the plot for my first book, The Atlantis Papyrus. After several revisions, I published it in 2019, and I have never looked back since.

I love writing fast-paced tales that combine research and known history with good stories. I want my readers to wonder which part is real and which is not—and usually, at the end of my books, I add detailed notes that shed more light on what’s known vs. not.

Each series brings challenges, and I love every book I’ve written. Cleopatra is a different person set in a different world than Spartacus. And ancient Mesopotamia is very different compared to ancient Egypt.

While I read a broad range of subjects (I am an avid reader—I’ve read every single day for the last 10-15 years, and a Kindle is always with me), ancient history, police procedurals, and intelligently-crafted realistic thrillers and science fiction are my favorite. It has to be gritty to keep my interest. For someone who does love series like Game of Thrones, interestingly I have never been able to get into fantasy.

I employ a variety of tools in my tradecraft. For writing, I start with Visual Studio code which lets me write much faster than on any other editor. I then convert the Markdown to Word, using a tool called PublishQuickly before initiating the publishing process. My favorite place to write is my work basement where I have a mac Mini and a LG 4K monitor. I will confess that as a writer of ancient historical fiction, I use surprisingly little paper in my workflow. I’m a very digital person that way, and I don’t smoke pipes.

What next? Who knows. I enjoy writing and hope to tell readers many more tales. I spend time in the beautiful Pacific Northwest when I’m not writing. I love watching TV—my interests are eclectic, but I usually prefer gritty dramas and thrillers. I enjoy traveling—I’ve seen quite a bit, but there’s so much more in this big beautiful world!

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