10 questions to mess with your mind

 10 Questions

Each one deeper than the last…

* * *

Revenge Algebra

 Complete the following equation.

Use no more than three words per blank.





A suitable punishment for a serial killer


Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall

 In your own words, define what you believe the difference is between a terrorist and a normal soldier.


On a Scale of 0-10…

…in which 0 is ‘not at all’, 5 is average, and 10 means ‘highly’:

How intelligent are you?

How physically attractive are you?

How charming?

How artistic?

How generous?

 And how narcissistic?


Monopoly Money

 You’ve just received three GET-OUT-OF-DEATH-FREE cards.

Anyone who has one of these avoids the next time they would die.

Once a death is avoided, the card vanishes.


Keeping all three for yourself?

Giving any away?

Distribute your cards and explain.


Picket Fences

 You’re madly in love.

Tomorrow you’ll have the chance to marry the love of your life.

You’ll have a huge house full of beautiful things.

Your children will be smart and loving.

On the surface, your marriage will appear ideal.

But here’s the thing: You’ve glimpsed the future and have seen that while your marriage will be stable and polite, it will ultimately become passionless and empty.

Knowing what you know, are you still walking down the aisle tomorrow?


Angel of Death

 You lucky bastard.

Or maybe not.

You’ve just acquired a new ability.

From now on, you can wish anyone in the world dead.

If you use this power, not only will the person die instantly and painlessly, but you’ll also gain a million dollars for each person you use it on.

How many times (if any) do you think you’ll use this power?

On whom?

What would you do with all that money?


Little Bang Theory

 Some people have theories about how the world began.

And how it will end.

And maybe even theories about what it all means.


What if you— yes you—could decide how it all began, what it all means, and how you’d like it to end?

Play god for a moment:

How would you like for the universe to have begun?

How do you want it to end?

What do you want it all to mean?


Dying Stars and Sabertooth Tigers

 Name something that is both beautiful AND terrifying.


Hard Scales of Justice

Imagine the following scenarios.

In which of these (if any) would you support the death penalty?

  • After fifty years of marriage, an elderly woman shoots her husband in his sleep. Her motivation is to claim life insurance money
  • A pair of eleven-year old boys lure a little girl into the woods, where they murder her for no apparent reason
  • A man foreign to your native country guns down ten people in a small, peaceful café
  • A politician orders your military to bomb a village in another country, killing one enemy combatant and two-hundred civilians


Behind the Veil

Throughout history, many millions of people have reported seeing ghosts, apparitions, aliens, monsters, and other strange, unexplainable phenomena.

Which of the following do you believe probably exist?





ESP (extra-sensory perception)

Alternate Dimensions

 Got any proof?


If you like answering lots of questions, go here.

For the original 5 Deep, Dark Questions, go here.

J Edward Neill

A Dark Union of Thoughts and Ideas

Thinkers, questioners, and science buffs, behold!

The Little Book of BIIIIIIG Questions is here.

It contains more than two-hundred unique conversation starters and thought igniters. It’s the book for every coffee table. It’s meant to be read in the company of others…or all alone beneath a starlit sky.

We all want to know the origin of the universe, the reasons why life exists, and the driving forces behind humanity.

Use this book to light the fire…

The Little Book Front Cover

The Little Book of BIG Questions contains 202 questions. It’s a compilation of Coffee Table Philosophy tomes 101 Questions for the End of the World and 101 Deeper, Darker Questions for Humanity.

For sample questions go here and here.

J Edward Neill

Preparing You For the End of the World

Event Horizon

A part of me is ever optimistic.

Another part of me…not so much.

I’ve always hoped for more out of the universe. And what I mean by more is that I want a greater meaning. A deeper understanding. The ability to one day, even if after my own death, to pull back the curtain and see what’s really going on.

I want to know.

Let’s clarify.

I want to know everything.

So do you.


And that’s the problem, isn’t it? For though we may spend our entire lives learning, relearning, and discovering, we’ll never know it all. Even our greatest scientists and philosophers won’t ever be able to sit back with a comfortably complete understanding of reality. Not even close. And odds are, no matter how much some of us pine for a divine afterlife, it’s neither probable nor scientifically likely we’ll get one. I admit; I could be wrong about that. I hope I’m wrong. I’d love to sit on a cloud eating chocolate and strumming a harp.

But to be pragmatic, hope is a mistake.

Which means most of us will have about eighty years to learn as much as we possibly can. About life. About the world. About the entire universe. If we’re wise, we’ll cram those eighty years like it’s the night before a big exam. Because we’re going to encounter a ton more questions than answers. And we’re going to dream far more than we’re able to do.

And then, at the end, our knowledge and wisdom will leave us.


And that’s ok.

Sort of.

If this is it, if our lives are to remain full of questions and theories and small discoveries followed by more questions, so be it. Maybe it really is all about the journey, and not all about how things begin or end.


Someday, a hundred-thousand generations from now, the accumulation of human knowledge and wisdom might reach a critical mass. We might grasp the nature of everything, and we might render conversations like this  obsolete. Wondering might no longer be a thing. Questions might go extinct.

But it’s not happening soon.

And certainly not during my lifetime.

In reading books from my Coffee Table Philosophy series, one might be tempted to assume a certain arrogance on my part. It might appear as though I think I’ve got the right answers, and that I’m asking questions from an attempted position of know-it-all.

Rest assured.

I’m not.

My view is and always has been that I don’t know anything. I dead serious. Beliefs and opinions and theories are swell things to have, I guess. It’s human nature to possess them, to use them in conversations, and sometimes even to employ them as weapons.

But not for me.

Not ever.

I guess what I’m saying is: even though hope is a mistake J, I hope the fact that you’re here means you subscribe to a similar philosophy.

The philosophy of:

It’s ok not to know.

It’s ok to admit ignorance.

It’s perfectly acceptable to ask questions for which there are no knowable answers.

In fact, it’s almost criminal not to.


* * *

So anyway, I guess what I’m getting at is…

…in a few days I’m releasing the final book in the Coffee Table Philosophy series.

It’s titled 101 Questions for the End of the World. And it’s not really like the other nine books in the series. You can Preorder it right here.

I mean…it has questions, but instead of ice-breaking, take to a party full of tipsy people, improve your love life-type questions, it’s full of deadly serious inquiries. Think Socrates meets Stephen Hawking, Plato meets Carl Sagan, and that’s kinda sorta what End of the World is like. It’s for science buffs, outer space lovers, old world philosophy fans, and serious truth seekers. In this book, I ask readers about all of life’s greatest mysteries, and I await your answers.

Look…instead of trying to explain it all, I’ll just give you three sample questions.

Go nuts:

* * *


 From the following, choose which one(s) you associate with your personal philosophy of life:

Cynicism – The purpose of life is to live with virtue and in harmony with nature (not what you thought it meant, is it?)

Agnosticism – Humanity knows nothing beyond that which it can touch

Pragmatism – The most valuable things are tangible and practical

Hedonism – Life’s purpose is to pursue pleasure

Capitalism – Life’s purpose is accumulate wealth for the benefit of yourself and your family

Theocentrism – God is a central fact of our existence

Nihilism – Life is without objective meaning, purpose, or value

Existentialism – The universe is unknowable, yet humans still have individual purpose and responsibility



The Butterfly Effect is defined as:

The phenomenon whereby a small change within a complex system can have large effects elsewhere.

In other words, a butterfly making the smallest alteration in the wind might set off a chain reaction that causes a hurricane two weeks later on the opposite side of the world.

Or something like that.

Think of an important event that has taken place during your life or the life of someone you know.

Now think about how that event came to be.

What was the butterfly?



 If you would be a real seeker after truth, it is necessary that at least once in your life you doubt, as far as possible, all things.” ~ Rene Descartes

It’s a pretty powerful statement.

Do you agree with it?

Why or why not?

* * *

So there you have it. I hope you’ll dive deep into this new book. I hope it educates and entertains you. And I hope, when you’re done, you review the hell out of it on Amazon.

101 Qs for the End of the World Front Cover

Pre-order me. Right. F’n. Now.



Get ready to science the shit out of yourself.

J Edward Neill

Oh, and I also wrote a ton of fiction books.

New Myths and Legends

In ancient times we made up stories about the gods and goddesses in order to explain the craziness of the world we lived in. Instead of science we had myth in order to understand the phenomenon we encounter every day. From those stories the legends that were the gods began to take shape. Our very thoughts brought them to life.

Yet as time went on the need for these pantheon of beings more powerful than ourselves went away. They were replaced by our modern religions until now they are taught in schools for their stories. They are called myths and we chuckle that we might have been so primitive enough in our reasoning to think that was how the world worked.


What people don’t realize… what I didn’t realize until this last year or so, is that there are new gods being created every day. And while they don’t have the coolness of names like Zeus or Set, I’m sure somewhere the Selfie god is enjoying the creation of more duck lips (that’s how he knows you truly love him – it’s like a secret language). The Social Media goddess is one of many faces, all of them engaged with someone else in an attempt to make as many friends as possible and “win” the internet. And let’s not forget about the modern-day David and Goliath, cousin gods forever locked in a deadly combat: Windows and Apple. One forgetful and moody, and the other smug and full of itself and its power.

However, I did not come to talk about those, but about another one I have learned about. I know my wife is one of her high priestesses as she invokes her name every day and most days she does so many times over.

chalkboard-to do list

The Bucket List, one of her favorites


The Great To Do List.

She will guilt you until you have appeased her. Don’t add something just to be able to cross it off, for this will anger her in ways you cannot possibly fathom. And as your lists grow and diminish, you will find it has a heart beat of its own. In your hands, notebook, laptop, tablet, phone, whatever is something to which you much feed, else you will surely be crushed under its weight.

You will know her by her appearance. Bullet points lining a page becomes the Mona Lisa in the hands of one of her worshipers. Forget understanding why the item needs to be completed, the only thing that matters is doing the latest task.

And the guilt at not doing your fair share of the list? Unbearable. You will toss in your bed at night, unable to greet the sweet release of sleep as every item weighs down on you like a stone pressed to your chest.


In order to stave off the insanity, you will begin to add more and more mundane tasks to the List. Cleaning up the kitchen suddenly gets broken into different appliances, because why only mark off ONE thing when I can mark off FOUR.

Need to call a friend, better write it down. Remember, if you don’t do it now then you will have only yourself to blame when she extracts her vengeance on you. The pit in your stomach, that’s her. Always watching, always demanding of more and more in tribute.

And you will claim to no longer need such things. You will delete the files and throw out her stationary (post-it notes), but she will linger, trying to explain how great and wonderful she can make you if only you’d mark one thing off today. Just one thing.

Perhaps you need to get a blog done? Better finish it before your deadline. Better to let the world know of her existence than suffer for one more day under her watchful eye.

And now that you are done, strike the item from the list.

That’s a good boy.



John McGuire

John McGuire is the author of the supernatural thriller The Dark That Follows, the steampunk comic The Gilded Age, and the novella There’s Something About Mac through the Amazon Kindle Worlds program.

His second novel, Hollow Empire, is now complete. The first episode is now FREE!

He also has a short story in the Beyond the Gate anthology, which is free on most platforms!

And has two shorts in the Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows anthology! Check it out!

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.


A Big ole Brainy Bundle

Got a few guests to entertain?

Having some company in for a party?

Got a glass of wine and a warm, crackling fireplace to sit beside and fall into deep thought?

Good. I knew I could count on you.

If you’re looking to engage your intellect, go no further. Get the Coffee Table Philosophy Bundle. It’s 4 books flush with 404 questions to challenge, entertain, and arouse. Questions are focused on Life, Death, Good vs Evil, Morality, Sex, Relationships, etc.


Get it. Devour it.

And since we’re BFF’s, I hope you’ll review it. 🙂

J Edward Neill

Boom! – 101 Deeper, Darker Questions for Humanity

In the wake of 101 Questions for Humanity

…there’s a new book on the block.

101 Deeper, Darker Questions for Humanity

It’s not just about the questions anymore. It’s about how deep you’re willing to go.

101 pages. 101 challenging situations to test your morality, your ethics, and your humanity.

The conversation begins now…

101 Deeper Darker Cover

Deep, dark softcover AND quick-as-lightning Kindle versions available.

To get a taste of what you’re in for, go here and here.

J Edward Neill

Interstellar Ice-Breaker Sale

Wait just a second…what’s this??

For the next 7 days, my philosophy/party/ice-breaking book 444 Questions for the Universe is on SALE for everyone in the US and UK.

The Kindle Countdown deal starts at $0.99 today!

444 Pages. 444 mind-bending questions. 444 ways to ignite every conversation.


If you prefer paper beneath your fingers, the softcover version is here:


To see what you’re getting yourself into, go here or here.

J Edward Neill

New Cover Art for the Coffee Table Philosophy series!


Three new books in the Coffee Table Philosophy series.


101 Questions for Women

101 Questions for Women Cover

Chock full of questions about sex and relationships. But also contains questions about life, love, and humanity. Geared for women, but accessible to everyone.


101 Questions for Midnight

101 Questions for Midnight Front Cover

For those who favor their questions cold, hard, and serious. Each page contains one question about Life vs Death, Good vs Evil, Morality, Sex, etc… Turn down the lights, pour yourself a drink, and settle down into a darker brand of entertainment.


101 Sex Questions

101 xxxy Questions Front Cover

Like a quiz book…but for your libido. Meant for hot nights with your partner, candid conversations with a lover, and parties during which (almost) everything goes. Includes questions on relationships, love, and of course, TONS of smoldering sex.


 I’ve still got softcover versions with the original cover art available. I’ll sign ‘em and ship ‘em free in exchange for Amazon reviews. Though after the originals are gone, they’ll never be available again.

 The rest of the Coffee Table Philosophy series is available here.

J Edward Neill

10 Things to Ask Yourself Tonight

The following 10 questions are straight from my philosophy/ice-breaker book, 101 Questions for Midnight.

I hope you enjoy them.

If so, considering answering a few in the comments section below, via Facebook, or on Twitter.

* * *

Absolute Freedom

 Imagine a society in which there are no laws.

You can do anything without fear of legal retribution.

Consider, of course, so can everyone else.

What things would you do that are currently illegal?

  Realistically speaking, is such a society even possible?


If you could choose to become utterly and forever immune to being offended, would you?

Algebra of the Heart

Complete the following equation:

 ________________ + ________________

 = Love

Play the Percentages

 Define exactly what percentage of each day you’d like to spend doing the following things:


Being alone

Having sex

Spending time with friends and family


The Small of a Woman’s Back

 Define what it means to be sexy.


Most humans make swift judgments about people they’ve newly encountered, even if subconsciously.

With that in mind, what judgments would you make after seeing:

A woman in a slinky dress    

A man listening to obnoxiously loud music in their car

A woman covered neck to ankle in tattoos

A man yelling at his child in public

Arbeit Macht Frei 

An ancient Japanese samurai once claimed, “Everyone should personally know exertion as it is known in the lower classes.”

His point is that for humility’s sake, every human should perform hard labor to some extent during their lives.

Do you feel this is true?

Can hard work free the mind of some of its troubles?


By and large, human society no longer embraces the theory of Survival of the Fittest.

Weakness, disease, and genetic flaws are no longer the death sentence they once were.  Strong, fit, and healthy individuals coexist with those less fortunate.

In terms of humanity’s long-term survival, do you believe this is ideal?



Is it doomed?

In other words; in 100 years, will the concept of two people spending their entire lives together cease to exist?

If not, what do you believe will reverse the current trend of most marriages ending poorly?

Does all passion die in the end?



Many of the most famous and popular books and stories have endings that could be described as tragic.

In your opinion, why are these tales of human suffering so beloved?

* * *

Intrigued? Curious? Entertained?

Dive into all 101 questions by clicking the image below:

101 Questions for Midnight Front Cover

And here’s the rest of the Coffee Table Philosophy series:

 101-Questions-for-Humanity-333x500 101 Questions for Men Cover 101 Questions for Women Cover 101 xxxy Questions Front Cover


J Edward Neill

Author of the Tyrants of the Dead dark fantasy trilogy

Down the Dark Path

Bury Yourself in Books!

Readers! Philosophers! Hard Partiers!

I want your reviews!


I’ve got two softcover copies each of every book in the Coffee Table Philosophy series.

And I’m giving them away for FREE!

All you have to do is agree to complete an honest Amazon review within two weeks of receiving your book.


If so, choose any of the following (multiples allowed) and I’ll ship FREE same-day to you:

101 Questions for Humanity

101 Questions for Midnight

101 Questions for Men

101 Questions for Women

101 Sex Questions

To get your copy shipped, reach me in the comments section below, via email, via Facebook, or via Twitter.

To get a feel for what’s inside each book, click the images below.

101 Questions for Midnight 101-Questions-for-Humanity-333x500 101 Questions for Men Cover 101 Questions for Women Cover 101 Sex Questions

Review me, baby.

I need your lovin’.

J Edward Neill

Free $@#%*! for your Kindle

From now through Saturday, August 29th, you can get 101 things for FREE.

By things I mean fun, party-ready, goes-perfect-with-wine philosophy.

And by FREE I mean $0.00000000000.

101 Questions for Humanity, the hit 1st entry in the Coffee Table Philosophy series:


Click me. Touch me. Read me. After all, I’m FREE.

To get a feel for what you’ll find inside, go here.

But if you need paper between your fingers, the softcover edition is only $5.99.

101 Questions for Humanity is part of a popular series. There’s also 101 Questions for Men, Women, Midnight, and Sex.

101 Questions for Midnight  101 Questions for Men Cover 101 Questions for Women Cover 101 Sex Questions

So warm up your e-readers and pour some wine.

You’re in for a fun night…

J Edward Neill