Jon’s artistic career began with music. Influenced by Kris Kristofferson, Burl Ives, Leon Redbone and Bob Gibson, he began writing and performing songs ⎯ which he believed were a three-minute movie ⎯ in the 1960s in bars and coffee houses.
A talented entertainer, he performed independently and with bands across the United States, as well as all over the world, including Portugal and Spain. He was also invited to perform before the Vice Premier of China on national Chinese television and on the Great Wall of China. In his hometown of Washington, D.C., he sang before the Kennedy family, performed at the Arts Club of Washington and was televised nationwide from the National Cathedral.
In addition to a string of album and CD releases, Jon’s music has been heard on television, including in the hit series Murder She Wrote and “The Tonight Show”. He also wrote five original musicals produced in Hollywood, CA, and performed on such stages as the John Anson Ford Theatre. To aspire up-and-coming songwriters, he published, The Songwriter’s Hook Book, complete with tips and famous inspiring quotes. Three songs from Awaken the Dreamer CD climbed to the Top 20 on MP3’s Hit List in 2003.
In 2005, Jon made the move from Los Angeles, CA to Raleigh, NC with his wife Eileen. In the “Old North State,” he continued to perform at a variety of venues, including the acclaimed Night of Dreams in Raleigh, the celebrated Festival for the Eno in Durham, and the popular Carrboro Musical Festival.
Few musical talents can make the cross over from singer/songwriter to author. Yet in fact, Jon did this time-and-time again, and began writing short stories.
Making the shift from artist to author look seemingly effortless, in no time, he was winning multiple awards. He was a three-time winner of the Lower Cape Fear Short Story Contest and twice the Rusty Axe contest. He received Honorable Mention in the Writers of the Future Science Fiction Short Story Contest for “Selfers” and “Smoking Bedpan”. The latter turned into the four-part, science fiction book series, Adventures of a Space Bum.
You can find many of Jon’s award-winning short stories in his three anthologies – Encounter on a Small Cafe and Other Short Stories, Murder at Thompson Bog and Other Short Stories, and Doll Bodies and Other Strange Sci-Fi Tales.
In 2014, The News & Observer selected his story Rain On St. Mary’s Street as the winner of its Halloween Ghost Story Contest.
Deciding to combine his vivid imagination with his love of words and the English language, Jon began writing titles ranging from conspiracy theories, to suspense to science fiction. He has 21 published paperback books and, 20 eBooks including his popular, gripping soft adult and young adult sci-fi books, Adventures of a Space Bum, in which a young female heroine experiences space exploration and space travel on an amazing journey. All Jon’s books are available on Amazon.com.
Known for his witty ability to get a point across, as well as evolved character development and action, Jon provides entertainment, education and escape. Much like his songwriting style, Jon’s writing stance is one part “sand in your eyes” and one part “cool summer breeze.” Just when you think you understand the players, the plot and the purpose ⎯ the shift happens and you find yourself between confusion and clarity.
Jon’s signature is intentionally provocative and refreshingly entertaining. Readers describe his works as “Life’s wisdom invisibly sewn into the web,” “His sci-fi reminds me of H.G. Wells,” and Jon’s works are “thought-provoking and exhilarating.”
“Stepping out into the light, I didn’t realize that it would be so bright.
My time has come surrounded by the sky.
Unfolding untried wings I leap off and I fly.
Here in the sky, one thing I’ve found.
You cannot fly with your feet on the ground .”
From “The Point of No Return” lyrics by Jon Batson – Awaken the Dreamer CD.