Friday, December 6, 2013


Author, John J. Higgins stops by today to answer a few questions and tell us about his newest book. Welcome, John. Care to tell us a bit about yourself?

I feel that I have crammed in about five lifetimes into one, this time around. I have been exposed to many things and was fortunate enough to be able to engage and experience such things as: working on farms as a kid; taking flying lessons and building a twenty foot wing-spanned plane for my 8th grade science fair project,  learning skills such as refinishing furniture and gun repair as a teenager; learned to scuba dive; supervised eighty employees and three departments in a complex industrial finishing work environment at nineteen years old; went back and finished college then changed the substance abuse system in my state; went to law school at night while working full-time;  produced anti- drug abuse PSA's for television using rock stars and celebrities; produced an anti-bias crime play using talented inner city high school student actors that we brought to 170 high schools in New Jersey and Toronto;  prosecuted cases in nineteen of New Jersey's twenty-one counties and worked on the prosecutions of New Jersey's most prolific serial killer, nurse Charles Cullen as well as other high profile cases up to and including other complex homicides. I also developed and used many tradesman skills in renovating an 1864 train station that I converted into my house, refinishing the wood walls, rewiring, installing bathrooms, kitchen and even my own heating system. After retiring as a Deputy Attorney General I began writing novels in earnest.

You can find me on my website, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, and my Amazon Author Page.

Tell us about your newest release. Feel free to include a short excerpt/blurb.

My most recent release is the third book of my series THE ARCHANGEL JARAHMAEL AND THE WAR TO CONQUER HEAVEN - IN EXILE. The first two books IN THE BEGINNING and IN REBELLION chronicle the creation of the Universe, the nine Orders of Angels, the Seven levels of Heaven, the Garden of Eden and the Earth, all told from the Angels perspective. The Almighty creates 14 Archangels who assist in the Creation and jealousy arises when the first Humans Lillith and Adam are created. Lillith and the fourth born Archangel Jarahmael fall in love all within the growing tensions in the Heavens. I am currently writing the second book of the second trilogy (the first book is in my publisher's hands) which follows the story in the Underworld.  
This is an excerpt from Book 3-In Exile

Luciferael walked over close to Lillith and picked her up in his arms, pulling her close. He wanted her after seeing her again, and he could feel the lust filling him from deep inside.
“Would you like to see my new palace?” Luciferael asked her as he pulled his head back slightly from kissing her.
She looked back, her eyes wide and open, barely breathing in her excitement at his touch. He looked into her eyes and could see that she was totally open to him once again. The power I have over these Humans is amazing, he thought to himself. His rebel Angels would follow him anywhere but they were Beings of Light like him. There should be some resistance to me, he thought, but I have not yet encountered any from the Humans. Both Lillith and Eve were easily persuaded by me. As he looked down upon her body, he could see that her flesh was excited, telling him that she was his for the taking. The wings that he had conjured for her made her much more attractive, more like himself, fluttering slightly as the feathers ruffled in small waves, as she stood there waiting on his next move.
He embraced her tightly as he flew down through the caverns to his own palace, at the lowest level of Hell itself. A grander replica of his palace in the Seventh Heaven, Mephistophael had done a great job replicating Luciferael’s own design. Where it was vast and beautiful in white and the intense blues of the Seventh Heaven, here it was designed in the bright colors of Hades and Hell, reds, oranges, violets, and blacks. The walls upon which the colors endlessly churned reflected magnificence and force.
“Look around Lillith, this is a copy of one of my finest creations. You have never been to my palace in the Seventh Heaven, but I have replicated it here. Can't you just feel the energy within the walls?”

What inspired you to start writing?

I have always been a writer in one form or another. I have written some short stories in college, scripts for a children's cartoon series to help pre-schoolers learn basic reading skills, numerous governmental committee reports and position papers that have resulted in actual legislation, and countless briefs and motions from my prosecutorial experience. A few years ago I tried to find the books that had formed my recollections about Luciferael's war to take over heaven and the only thing I could remotely find was john Milton's Paradise Lost, which although English professors may love it, is basically unreadable and I could at one point read Freud in the original German. That's was the driving force for me writing this series, and once I started along that path, I had many examples of synchronicity which steered my thinking and writings. If you think about it, almost every good versus evil story is based upon what happens when the Almighty's love gets twisted around with different aims - and this is the primal story that begins it all. What characters are more powerful than the Angel? Everything else is just dust in comparison.
Who is your all-time favorite literary character and why? 

The character I adopted as my role model was as silly as it sounds is Ian Fleming's 007. I had a psychotic stepfather as my dad died when I was three, and it was upon seeing Goldfinger as a ten year old that I saw someone sophisticated, witty, knowledgeable about all sorts of topics, and of course smooth with women. As I was a researcher at heart even then, I proceeded to read all of Ian Fleming's 007 novels. His Bond was flawed and vulnerable despite his outward appearance, he even appears to die at the end of From Russia With Love and gets married in On Her Majesty's Secret Service.   Probably the most important of life's lessons I learned from both Fleming's literary and Sean Connery's cinematic portrayal was: don't be afraid to be captured and outnumbered; never give up; and no matter how dark it may seem, keep your eyes open and be ready to take advantage of the escape route or mechanism that always appears just before you will perish.

How do you choose your character's names?

I tried to come up with some scheme in naming particularly the Archangels. Historically, all of their names end with 'el' meaning 'of God.' The Bible is weak in terms of discussing the Angels in any meaningful way, no offense to those who are extremely religious. I searched through other apocryphal writings and myths as well as the voluminous number of names off Angels that developed during the dark and middle ages. There are thousands upon thousands of names. I made my own decisions and made all the Archangels’ names consistent.  Luciferael, Michael, Sammuael, Jarahmael, Beelzebael, Gabriel, Mephistophael, Raphael, Mammonael, Uriel, Suriel, Ariel, Raziel and Damiel. I developed schemes as well for Angels for the lesser orders such as Cerebriel of the Cherubim, Abrackus of the Potentates, etc.

What's your favorite thing to do when you're not writing?

Fly, there is nothing like racing down a runway, engine throttle on full, keeping the plane on the center line as speed builds up faster and faster, smell of AV fuel in your nose, and at rotation speed pulling back on the yoke, aiming the nose of the propeller upwards, that feeling of gravity pulling your stomach downwards as you leave the ground watching the tarmac and ground get smaller and the blue skies above entice you ever higher.

Do you have a favorite quote or saying? What is it?

Yes, “If at first you don’t succeed, try a little more dynamite!”

What is one thing readers would be most surprised to learn about you?
That I really do have ghosts in my train station, pictures to prove it! But they seem to like me so we all get along.

The Archangel Jarahmael And The War to Conquer Heaven - In The Beginning  - Book I -

The Archangel Jarahmael And The War To Conquer Heaven - In Rebellion - Book II -

The Archangel Jarahmael And The War To Conquer Heaven - In Exile - Book III  -