Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Lois Billings  

Pen Name: Lois Fowler Barrett


Born: 1935 in Marion, Illinois

-- Website --
-- Lois Billings on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Barrett was born and educated in Marion, Illinois. Barrett also lived in Harrisburg, Illinois.

Biographical and Professional Information

Barrett is a former reporter, columnist, & photographer for newspapers in the Southern Illinois area. She was born and educated in Illinois schools and colleges. Studies included the humanities, journalism, and government. Barrett became an avid student of the historical environment. Traveling and research are the author's hobbies, along with writing. As a former reporter/photographer for newspapers in Southern Illinois, Barrett explored earthquake happenings in the early eighteen hundreds to the present. This heightened a desire to relate the seriousness of these findings. What began as a project many years ago has attained fruition in fiction in this century. A growing concern for acceptance and recognition of the earthquakes of the past birthed a desire to fictionalize life in the 1800s in southern Illinois to as far in the present as possible. Barrett delved deeply into the ways of relevant historical facts for balance. Much of the studies, travels, and insight into this way of life included the lower counties of the area. Barrett emphatically sees history as an education, meat and potatoes for history buffs, into how their ancestors might have lived in the area during pioneering-to-present times. As research heightened, the lively characters of a pioneering era novel took on a life of their own, furthering desire to follow the characters for generations as a dedicated series.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

When the Earthquakes Spoke
ISBN: 0976235609

Brick Hill Publishing. 2004

Historical fiction set in 1806-1812 when Campbell Smith from Plymouth and Rebecca Burton arrive seperately from Boston into southeastern Illinois to escape their domineering fathers. Disaster strikes in many ways, first with Smith losing his partner to murder upon arriving in the area, leaving an inexperienced youth to survive the land. Burton is escaping a secret past. Her secret is brought to light and she is forced to return to Boston to face the consequences, for which she faces condemnation and estrangement from Smith. The 1811-1812 earthquakes of a four state area ultimately forces unforgiving souls to regret past actions, bringing about reconciliation.

Preacher's Son & Henry Brown
ISBN: 0976235617

Brick Hill Publishing. 2007

In the aftermath of the Earthquakes of 1811 and 1812, the refugees at Fort Stone find themselves in a hard place surrounded by British redcoats and their Shawnee allies. With all-out war on the horizon and treachery around every bend of the river will Campbell Smith and Rebecca Burton ever find love and security?

There Oughta Be A Law
ISBN: 0976235625

Brick Hill Publishing. 2007

A sheriff ought to be able to retire when he's sixty and DeWitt County Sheriff Art Simonds believes he will. Leona Broughton upsets his plans when her thriteen year old granddaughter disappears and it's deja-vu for the older woman. When the alleged perpetrator, a registered sex offender is loosed on bond, events are set off which lead to a serial killing situation. Bodies are turning up with no solid leads as to who ridded the county of the blight of known child molesters. Will Art get involved or rest out his days? Will the county ever be the same?

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)