The author of eight published books, Barbara Chepaitis' works include The Fear Principle and The Fear of God featuring Jaguar Addams (Wildside Press), as well as the critically acclaimed mainstream novels Feeding Christine and These Dreams. Ms. Chepaitis' first nonfiction book, Feathers of Hope, is about Berkshire Bird Paradise and the human connection with birds. Ms. Chepaitis is at work writing a sequel to Feathers of Hope, which tells the story of helping our US Troops in Afghanistan rescue Eagle Mitch.
Barbara Chepaitis is also the founder of the storytelling trio The Snickering Witches, as well as faculty coordinator for the fiction component of Western Colorado’s MFA program in creative writing.
Please tell us a bit about your book: The Fear of God - characters, plot, etc.
On Prison Planetoid Three, Jaguar Addams enters the minds of criminals, chasing the shadow of their fears into the light. Her current case is Cult Leader Sardis Malocco, who used the children of her sect as living bombs. The testers say her fear is God, and she must face it in a Virtual Reality Heaven. Alex assigns Jaguar to the case because he suspects that Sardis has real plans to bring on the Apocalypse, and only Jaguar can stop her. But Jaguar is enraged when Sardis critically wounds her best friend Rachel, and the interference of a holodemon on the VR site make the job almost impossible. As the clock ticks toward the End of Days, Jaguar must utilize a Death Walk – one of the most dangerous empathic tricks in the book – to reveal the truth in this place of illusions.
If you could meet, in person, any of your characters, who would it be and why?
I’d like to meet both Jaguar Addams and Alex Dzarny. Jaguar, because we have similar tastes in shoes and I’d like to find out where she gets some of hers. I wouldn’t mind having her teach me some of her psi capacities, and a few new curse words. She’s exceptionally skilled at both. Alex, because he’s handsome, courteous, and has a few psi capacities that are also worth studying.
If you could fictionalize yourself and put yourself in any situation, how would it play out? Could you give us a scene/scenario of such an occurrence?