Meet Jesse Sprague

Join us in welcoming Jesse Sprague to our horror crew. Jesse has already helped us shape some of our stories as a developmental editor. Now we’re delighted to bring to our readers her own words in the form of a psychological horror, Porcelain.

Author Bio

Coming from a long line of storytellers, and as a busy mom herself, Jesse Sprague writes for others looking for an evocative escape. And her debut novel, Spider’s Kiss, took the shapeshifter trope in a new direction with sexy spiders in space. Her sci-fi series Beneath 5th City explores what happens if there are no heroes to step up in an alien invasion. Her previous stories have appeared in anthologies with award-winning and New York Times bestselling authors.

To Jesse, words are magic—they might be the only real magic left in this world. Find Jesse Sprague at

Asked and Answered

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

I always knew. I wrote my first “novel” in third grade. Its amazing . . . I think for me it was more a process of being told I could never actually be a writer and I should be something else. And then the process of unlearning that “wisdom.”

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

Before I write a book, I always make a soundtrack to listen to while writing. And on that soundtrack each character has at least one song dedicated to them. It’s fun because then whenever I hear those songs after the book is written I think about that story.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Lay by the beach and sleep, like a lazy manatee.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

Surprising to me or you? I’ll answer for me. That outlines really are a necessary thing, not just another one of those things organized people try to foist on me.

What do you think makes a good story?

A million different things coming together and singing in harmony. It’s not about the elements to me; it’s about how they twist together to form something new—discord and harmony working together to create a picture.

What do you hope readers get from your books?

Entertainment. I’m not looking to teach life lessons. I want people to be entertained by the story. Maybe have a feeling that moves with them, or a memory that sparks emotion.

If you could tell your younger writer self anything, what would it be?

Having more friends doesn’t automatically make you happier. The world is run by extroverts, but their truth is a fiction unless you are one of them.

As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

I think all my writer friends would riot if I didn’t say a spider . . . but I’m going to go with a unicorn. Just a really bloodthirsty one who spears everyone with its horn.

How do you select the names of your characters?

I pull them from the magic ether. Alternatively I use name generators on the internet if I don’t care about the character.

Why did you choose Cursed Dragon Ship Publishing?

I wanted to work with a community of authors rather than in isolation for a change. And I liked all of the people I knew who were with CDS

What is the most difficult part of your artistic process?

Honestly? The times when I can’t. I’m bipolar and letting myself have the lows is often the hardest part. I always feel like I’ll never be able to create again.

Does your family support your career as a writer?

Oh, yes! My son is my biggest fan (though he’s never been allowed to read my work) and my husband does all my marketing for my books. And my mom gets to listen to me talk out plot holes about once a week over coffee. She’s very good at pretending she cares.

A Glimpse at Porcelain

What was the inspiration behind Porcelain?

A childhood doll I had, this creepy thing my mom kept in the basement that used to terrify me and my brother. That and being bipolar gave me a desire to write something about how I often feel—like I can’t trust my own mind. I always watch psychological horror movies where the people insist they are right and really seeing these unbelievable things. That always seemed unrealistic. Like if it was me, I’d question if what I was seeing was real. So I put the doll and the instability together and Porcelain was the result.

For a book inspired by your own experiences, how much of Porcelain is true?

More than I’d like to admit and not enough that I belong locked up. I think. Probably.

Welcome to the crew, Jesse!

Porcelain is set for release in December of 2024. If you want a taste of Jesse’s writing now, check out her other series here.