FEATURED AUTHOR: John F. Barker Examines the Nature of Evil Through Fiction

Our featured author is Dr. John F. Barker, writer of the psychological thriller Killer of Minds: Michael's Story.

Tell us something about the man, John F. Barker. Who are you?

I'm a practicing psychologist and a U.K.C.P. Registered Freudian Psychotherapist. During my career, I worked for various Police Authorities throughout the U.K. My primary aim was to identify the meaning of many violent acts of crime. In the first of my trilogy of books, I examine the concept of evil and define this concept as an attack on humanity. Although the trilogy centres on fictional characters and institutions, they are accurately based on my experience both as a psychologist and psychotherapist. The forensic nature of my work throws light on what it is to be a human being. I saw first hand the core of human nature as one capable of extreme violence. Horrendous acts are perpetrated by human beings. We dismiss this at our peril.

And who's the writer? How was KILLER OF MINDS: Michael's Story conceived?

I was born in Derbyshire and attended the village school, then later went to the University of Nottingham where I gained an honours degree in psychology. I continued in the department of psychology where I was awarded a Doctorate. My research centred on the natural history of criminal behaviour carried out by emotionally and behaviourally disturbed delinquents. I became a senior lecturer in psychology, then moved on to become Principal Psychologist at a residential school for emotionally and behaviourally disturbed children. During this time, I trained in contemporary Freudian theory and Practice at the West Midlands Institute for Psychotherapy, becoming a United Kingdom Chartered Psychotherapist. I worked for different police authorities and also worked in private practice. 

I'm currently writing a trilogy based upon a fictional special hospital. The first book is Michael Toons; “Killer of Minds." The second is centred on a pyromaniac; “A Burning Desire." The third and last in the series enters the world of paedophilia; “The Reflection in the Mirror." The three books have a central theme; the creative unconscious mind which when dredged at its deepest levels creates a world which for most of us sleeps, but which can be awakened with devastating results.

So, basically you write about the evil nature of humanity from the point of view of a psychologist. Are your books based on facts from your personal career and experience?

Yes, the books are all based on my own experience and research, however, I do feel that through fiction, I have more freedom to express my thoughts than I would have had through an academic book.

Is there a book or author that inspired you to be a writer?

Not any one particular author, I just felt that now, being retired, and having some quality time living in Southern Spain, that I had a story to tell. If there was an influence on my writing, perhaps an unconscious influence would be D.H Lawrence and the book "Moby Dick."

What can readers expect when they read KILLER OF MINDS?

I think they can expect some unusual ways of looking at violent serial offending. I would like my readers to move from the idea of monsters, to the more useful concept of evil being at the core of human nature.

Where can they buy a copy?

Available on Amazon worldwide as both eBook and Paperback

Are you releasing a new book anytime soon?

Book 2 in the Trilogy ( "A Burning Desire") is almost complete and will be available around late June early July.

What do you love about being an author?

The sense of achievement getting my story down in words. It gives me a chance to give non-professional forensic workers a way to reach the minds of outrageous serial offenders. We must remember, I think that despite their outrageous behaviour, they are human beings.

What is your message to readers?

My message is to simply sit back and enjoy some of the different perspectives that I hope to offer.

Tell us where we can find you.

You can find me at my white washed old finca in a small rural Andalusian village in Southern Spain often in the courtyard with a glass of red wine, reflecting on my past career or musing over a pint of beer watching rugby.

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