Interview with Jeremy Higley:
Crystal: I'm so excited to have Jeremy Higley here today. Welcome, Jeremy! Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?
Jeremy: I’ve always dreamed of designing a time traveling game named Broken, in which if your character moves more than a mile in any direction they are transported to a random space and time. Also, medieval knights jousting atop dinosaurs.
I’ve also thought it would be fun, if a bit campy, to write a book about wizards invading Earth from another planet.
I eat an apple every day.
Perhaps the most revealing piece of information I can share is that the Watch Later list on YouTube can only hold 5000 videos. That’s why I have four Watch Later lists. There’s just never enough time to watch all the YouTube videos that look interesting. My GoodReads “want-to-read” list and my Netflix “watch later” list are both facing similar issues. I’m thinking about setting up a “want to friend” list for my Facebook, but that might be taking my time management issues a little too far.
Crystal: What are you currently working on?
Jeremy: I’m working on the second book in my Darksome Thorn series, entitled The Dead Forsworn. It follows the continuing adventures of Skel and his company of mismatched questers as they head for the coast, only to be captured by a magical experiment gone horribly wrong. Worse, there are greater forces threatening the land of Duskain. The Gloin are facing extinction, chased by enchanted iron trees that can’t be hurt by mortal weapons. Phyllos is under siege. The Wyvern is wreaking havoc in Eltar. Meanwhile, Orihah discovers secrets in Azmat’s castle long thought to be dead, secrets powerful enough to either save the world, or destroy it completely.
Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for either your current release or your current WIP?
Jeremy: I was never the type who could write a book based off a single idea. A single theme, maybe, someday, but never a single idea. If I could sum up Dead Forsworn in a single idea, though, it would have to be this: all things grow old and die, but the oaths we make bind us forever. Be careful you don’t find yourself bound to the dead, and forced to choose between your honor and your life.
Crystal: Do you have a favorite snack that you like to munch on while writing? If so would you mind sharing what it is with us?
Jeremy: Oreos dipped in milk! Oh, the yumminess. It’s a recurring issue, really, because I can’t type when my fingers are covered in milk and cookie sludge. Or can I? I’ll have to get back to you on that.
Crystal: Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?
Jeremy: I think the scene I worked hardest for in this book would have to be the birth of the dragon. If you’ve read my first book, you’ll understand why this scene was a big deal, and also why it was bound to be a bit bizarre to execute. I tried to create a realistic blend of feelings, as it’s not every day a dragon is born, and the characters involved range from those who have no idea what’s going on, to those who would rather not be present, to those who want to be present but have no idea what’s expected of them. And then there’s Morkin.
As far as fun scenes go, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed every scene between Smyra and Iya’eya. They’re such different characters, and they play off each other well. Who is Iya’eya, you ask? Oh, she’s just Smyra’s invisible friend.
Crystal: When you are not busy writing wonderful stories to keep us lucky readers entertained, what do you like to do? Do you have a hobby?
Jeremy: I think up bad puns. Did you hear there’s a country in Europe that relies entirely on hydroelectric power? They call it the Dam Nation. Ba dum tssss!
Crystal: Do you have a favorite background noise you like to having going while you write (TV, Music, kids playing)?
Jeremy: Utter and complete silence. My ideal writing environment is as quiet as death, with an unspoken expectancy like a breath held for too long. Except the breath never comes.
But I learn to make do with a less-than-ideal writing environment, because where can you find that kind of quiet in everyday life? Oh, and sometimes I like to listen to music.
Crystal: Thanks for visiting. It has been a pleasure having you visit today. Can you think of anything else you would like to share with us today?
Jeremy: I have a new cat! Her name is Luna, after the character Luna Lovegood from the Harry Potter series. She’s a Himalayan with the sweetest temperament I’ve ever seen in a cat. She seems to purr on reflex, even if you’re just picking her up to move her off the couch. She’s purring right now, actually. Say hi, Luna!
A thousand years ago, the wizards of the Nynsa were tricked. They failed to follow the prophecy of the Darksome Thorn, and now the greatest evil of their time has survived into the next age. They will do anything to fix their mistake.
The Darksome Thorn, meanwhile, has revealed a new prophecy, and the very evil they failed to kill is working to use that prophecy to his advantage.
Forces of evil run rampant in the land of Duskain. Ancient powers are stirring. A greater darkness is imminent...
...and Skel, the foster son of an elephant herder, finds himself caught in the middle of everything...
Skel was running so fast as he went to warn Mynjar and Talon that the grass whipped at his bare legs like dull knife blades. As the tent loomed closer, he could already feel his movements slowing. His feet were starting to sink into the firm earth as if it were a sludgy bog.
The attack was beginning.
“Dun Ko,” Skel shouted, trying to rouse the Eltar in the circle of tents ahead of him. His voice sounded like a whisper to his own ears, but quickly he heard shouts in return. The tents went abuzz with the yelling of frustrated, terrified men and women struggling to rise from their own beds. Skel saw an Eltar woman leave her tent, scrambling with immense difficulty to get away from the camp with a
small child. Her child disappeared from her arms within moments, dissolving into a cloud of dandelion fluff that blew away on a nonexistent wind.
Skel tried to ignore her screams. There was only one child in any real danger tonight. The Dun Ko were simply trying to distract the rest of them, keep them occupied with nightmares and illusions while they sought out their true target. He spoke a few words to the wind. It pushed him faster with a strong gust, knocking over his foster family’s tent as he approached it and blowing it halfway over to the elephant herd. Mynjar, Talon, and their daughters stared at him in bewilderment as he ran past them to stand between the Dun Ko and their intended victim.
“Dun Ko,” he repeated, struggling to catch his breath.
“What’s going on, boy?” Mynjar shouted. “How would you know if the Dun Ko were coming?”
Lonmar and Konsa screamed as they watched their father’s arms suddenly melt off his body like grease in a fire, gathering in black pools at his feet. Talon ran to grab Pynme from his crib, but sank to her chin in the dirt.
“The Dun Ko want Pynme,” Skel tried to explain, but Mynjar was on his knees sobbing, and Lonmar and Konsa were crowding around him, aghast, trying to comfort him. Talon was screaming hysterically, calling for her baby, but Pynme wouldn’t wake up. Smyra was the only one who
seemed to still have her senses in spite of the Dun Ko’s psychic onslaught.
“Are you going to fight them?” she asked. She seemed surprised, but not impressed. She somehow managed to sound condescending, even now.
“I have to try—” Skel started.
“And fail,” Smyra interrupted, “but I’ll help you anyway.”
About the Author:
Jeremy Higley was born in California but now lives in Arizona. As of 2016 he’s a graduate student working on a master’s degree in English. He’s also an instructional aide at a local elementary school, a novelist, and a contributing editor for a nonprofit student success company called LifeBound.
Find out more about Jeremy at: