Joseph F. Girzone was born in Albany, New York on May 15, 1930. He received a theology degree from Catholic University of America in 1955 and was ordained a priest that same year. He retired from pastoral work in 1981 at the age of 50 because of health problems. In 1982, he self-published his first novel, Joshua, under the imprint of his own small religious press, Richelieu Court Press. He sold the book through direct contact and word of mouth before it was brought to the attention of an editor at Macmillan. He wrote a total of ten books in the Joshua series which were adapted into the film Abandon. He also founded the Joshua Foundation in 1995. He died from a heart condition on November 29, 2015 at the age of 85.