John Stover was born in Brockton, Mass, June 1, 1951, the fourth child of seven.
It was in Brockton, Mass. , that Mr. Stover spent his youth at his father's hotel, The West Elm Hotel, where he observed men from the Brockton VA Hospital. Much of Mr. Stover's writing is culled from these dysfunctional men. As a child, Mr. Stover observed several unexpected, sudden and violent deaths.
As a youth of fifteen, Mr. Stover was involved in a bizarre accident that took the life of his elderly neighbor. He steadfastly maintains his innocence.
The author attended Boston University and the University of California at Los Angeles, where he majored in English literature and writing. Mr. Stover began his college career as a pre-med major. He was forced to leave the university after waking up restrained in a straitjacket, the result of a bad LSD trip. The author was picked up running naked through the streets of Boston on Christmas Eve. That episode pretty much ended any thoughts of an academic or medical career.
In 1974, Mr. Stover spent a year hitch-hiking around the south, working at various odd jobs, as well as hopping freight cars, guessing astrological signs for money and working for the local moonshiners and drug dealers. In six months Mr. Stover logged over 20,000 miles on his thumb, sleeping under bridges, accepting the hospitality of strangers and living by his wits. Today, this living situation would be described as homeless. In 1973, it was merely living “On the Road.”
In 1975 Mr. Stover moved to Nantucket Island where he worked for the Nantucket Historical Association. He lectured the public on early American whaling, becoming an expert on scrimshaw and Herman Melville. Later he worked at Nantucket Cottage Hospital, where he continued his medical training while driving an ambulance and attending to the critically ill and elderly.
In 1976, Mr. Stover moved to California where he worked as a personal assistant to Edwin W. Pauley, Chairman of the Board of Regents, for the Universities of California and Treasurer of the Democratic Party. He also worked at several of the local area hospitals, UCLA Medical Center and St. John's Hospital, among others. Mr. Stover stayed four years with Edwin W. Pauley, spending summers with the Pauleys on their private Island in Hawaii. Some of the guests who spent time on Coconut Island were Jerry Brown, Jackie Kennedy Onassis and Meredith Willson, composer of “The Music Man.” The author also worked for several foreign ambassadors as well as for the Academy Award winning director Lewis Milestone.
In 1984, Mr. Stover entered the world of fashion, working for several international clothing companies, winning several awards and achieving considerable success and acclaim. In 1989, he opened his own concern, City Garment Finishers, a garment manufacturing company, which employed as many as fifty workers.
After a personal crisis in 1998, Mr. Stover sold everything he owned to concentrate on his first love, writing. In less than two years, Mr. Stover has written one memoir and two novels. His personal Odyssey, “The Road Runner” is his first book. It was written in six weeks.
The author's second book, “Common Cents,” is a Civil War novel that mirrors the homeless situation of modern America. “Common Cents” is a futuristic tale concerning a possible second Civil War; paralleling the American Civil War and its issues of slavery and bondage with the conditions of the homeless that exist today in modern America. The author considers the homeless problem in this country a National disgrace.
“In-Sight,” the author's third book is a new-age, science fiction story about a dysfunctional time-traveler who is able to journey in and out of his own life, both past and present. This time-trekker is also able to “jump” into distant ancestry; descendents in the past and heirs to the future.
The author has taken the popular concept of time traveling and added his own unique vision of cross-addiction, genealogical molding and familial balance. The reader will long remember the characters that weave in and out of time during the time-traveler's journey.
A Zen-type approach to destiny, a Christian sensitivity towards forgiveness and a futuristic bent regarding time and space, combine to bring the reader headlong into an absorbing and harrowing tale of time-twists and family developments that will both haunt and fascinate.
“The Men's Group” is the author's sexual oeuvre. Taking personal experience from a men's discussion group, the author relates a hilarious tale of a sexually a compulsive man, desperately seeking help for his problem. When the author joined the group, it consisted of four heterosexual men and two gay men. When the author left the group it was comprised of two straight men and four gay men. They were the same men. Mr. Stover was one of the straight men. The other men in the group see the protagonist's exploits as heroic, never seeing the actual damage being done by his constant pursuit of women. The colorful characters include the six men of the group, each seeking their own sexual compass as well as (among others) a teen-age hermaphrodite, an older woman who seduces the young man, a former girlfriend of his fathers, a stunning heiress who confuses pain with love, a college professor and a double amputee.
In 1999, he author created a line of clothing for Playboy Enterprises. He toured the country with seven Centerfolds. What he found out was that beauty really is only skin deep. In fact, it seldoms runs that deep. He was at the Playboy Mansion for the Millennium New Year's party. The Men's Group is the author's way of dealing with this hedonistic part of his life.
Love Rescue Me is the author's seventh book. On Labor Day 2008, John was involved in a devastating surfing accident. He was briefly paralyzed and laid up for four months. Unable to work, the author lost his house, business, cars, girlfriend, twenty years of sobriety and the support and respect of his friends and family. He took his first drink in twenty years and ended up on the steps of the Los Angeles Mission, in downtown Los Angeles. Later he moved on to The Midnight Mission, where he completed the one year program. Love Rescue Me, is a love story for our times and culminates in a downtown mission. The characters and plot were largely taken from these harrowing experiences.
Mr. Stover has one child, a daughter, Katy. He was very active in raising his child. Katy Stover contributed the cover for “The Road Runner,” his first book. Katy Stover graduated from the University of California at Santa Barbara in June 2011 with highest honors. From there she went to Ballou High School, an inner city school in Washington DC. Katy successfully qualified for the Bill Gate’s sponsored Teach for America. She teaches impoverished and challenged high school kids, grades 9 and 10. Just carrying on with a Stover family tradition. Mr. Stover is currently single and lives in downtown Los Angeles, Ca.