Joe C. Ellis

A Little Bit About Me and My Writing:

I was born and raised in the Ohio Valley. My father, a Marine who fought in four major battles in the Pacific theater during World War II, was a foreman at Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel. My mother, a great lady and political commentary writer for our local papers, is a wonderful mom, always encouraging my creative endeavers.

I'm married with three adult children, Rebekah, Sarah, and Joseph. I have three grandchildren: Rebekah's boys, twins Noah and Matthew, and Sarah's boy, Max. My wife, Judy, has always been a great partner in life. She is currently the Sunday School Superintendant at the Colerain Presbyterian Chruch where I am the lay pastor. I also pastor the Scotch Ridge Presbyterian Church. Currently I'm teaching high school art, computer graphics, and web design at Martins Ferry High School. I've been with the school system for 32 years.

In April of 2001 I self published my first novel, The Healing Place. It became very popular locally and sold out of the first edition. Inspired by that small success, I submitted queries for The Healing Place to literary agents and quickly signed with Susan Lee Cohen of the Riverside Literary Agency. Susan subbed the novel to five publishers, but none were enthusiastic enough to offer a contract. I will be publishing a second rewritten edition of The Healing Place in August of 2007 through Upper Ohio Valley Books.

My next novel, Murder at Whalehead, was based on my family's vacation experiences on the Outer Banks. Using the same characters from The Healing Place, I concocted a plot involving the wonderful landmarks of Corolla, NC--the Whalehead Club, the Currituck Lighthouse, the Wildlife Preserve (Four-Wheel Drive Country), and the excellent restaurant, The Black Pelican in Kitty Hawk. A great agent, Michele Rubin, from a prestigious New York agency, Writers House, quickly offered representation. Michele was convinced the novel would sell and made a great effort. It came close at a few major houses. During the last few years, the fiction market has become extremely difficult for new writers to break into. Maybe publishing the novel through Upper Ohio Valley Books will bring the book readership and recognition. Time will tell.

I then wrote The First Shall Be Last, is a World War II story with many scenes based on my father's memoirs. A mystery, the book is about a crime committed by a white soldier against a black soldier on the battlefield. Currently it is in the hands of a literary agent who recently requested the manuscript. I'm excited about the possibilities of this book. If it doesn't sell to a major publisher, I will definitely consider publishing it through Upper Ohio Valley Books.

Murder at Hatteras, is another Outer Banks mystery. Because of the popularity of Murder at Whalehead, I decided to writer another book set in a small town on the Outer Banks--Buxton, NC. I am excited about a wider distribution for this novel because John F. Blair Publishing will be the book's distributor. Blair is a long-established North Carolina publisher with many bestselling books.

Murder on the Outer Banks--the Methuselah Murders is my latest novel. It is also being sold through John F. Blair, Publisher. I'm thankful for the regional success of my books but hoping that this latest novel will succeed nationally.

If you have any comments or questions, please email me at joecellis@comcast.net .

Sincerely,

Joe C. Ellis

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