Writing Is My Passion

My short story, “Inside,” was published in the Hardboiled magazine in 2004. Another short story, “Scars on Brown Earth,” was selected as one of the finalists in the Glimmer Train’s Fall 2007 Short Story Contest for New Writer. My travel vignette, “Cats Among the Ruins,” was published in the 3 February 2009 issue of The Christian Science Monitor. And my short story, “The Other Side of War,” was published in the Spring 2013 edition of The Northern Virginia Review. I finished my debut novel, a story about a war correspondent in World War II Italy.

My Published Stories


J Almon Polk - Inside

Ian Pierce, an NCIS special agent, is on a hunt for a murderer aboard the USS Kitty Hawk. He tracks the killer down but ends up with an experience that changes him forever.

The Other Side of War

J Almon Polk - Other Side of War

On her last day in Naples, Italy, Ashley Mildred, a U.S. navy doctor, reflects on her life with her lover, Marcello Pasquale, an Italian Carabinieri officer, who died in the Afghan war.

The Cat King of Rome

J Almon Polk - The Cat King

In Rome, Italy, I go on a search for Nelson, a one-eyed cat king of a children’s book. Instead, in an archaeological site, I find a world full of cats and cat-loving people.  

My Current Projects & Goals

My Debut Novel

In February, 2023, I finished my debut novel. Now, I’m searching for a literary agent to represent my work. 

It was a long journey of writing, struggling every step of the way. Several years ago, I had completed a 130,000-plus words novel and submitted it to a Hollywood story consultant (a writer friend’s friend). He suggested major changes. It turned out to be near complete rewrite. 

I rewrote the novel, cutting out one point-of-view character, and after two years of working at it, the novel turned into a massive 230,000 words. Ridiculous. What agent or publisher will consider such a colossal work from a debut novelist? So, I split the story into three books (yes, I know, it’s not a good strategy for a debut novelist; what agent or publisher will consider a trilogy from a debut novelist, right?).  Anyway, I rewrote my debut novel, the first of the trilogy, as a ‘stand alone.’ 

The book is a mainstream, historical fiction.  

My Writing Goals for 2023

Now, that I finished my debut novel, my next goal is to find a literary agent to represent my work. I started working on a query and summary, which should take me a couple of month to complete. After those are done, I’ll start reaching out to the agents. Meanwhile, I plan to start a new novel (not the second of the triology of my bebut novel, but a completely different one). The key here is “never give up.” Perseverance. Keep on writing knowing that the joy of writing is in the writing.


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