When I first got the idea for Death Perception, my most popular supernatural thriller, I knew nothing about Spiritualism. I came from a Protestant/Evangelical/Pentecostal Christian background and held a general belief in life after death.
But all of the after-death spirit communication and paranormal abilities, I invented from an imagination fueled by a lifetime of movies, short stories, and novels.
At least I thought it was made up…
Sweeping life changes lead me on a new spiritual path
Death Perception was my master of arts thesis, which I wrote while enrolled in the Writing Popular Fiction program at Seton Hill University from 2004–2006.
The spring that I graduated, I quit the ministry, finalized a divorce ending eighteen years of marriage, came out, sold the house I alone was paying on for the previous six months, moved, and finalized my thesis.
I gave up on organized religion and orthodox faith. And I gave up on my novel.
After working on it non-stop for two years, I was burned out, not to mention overwhelmed with life changes.
But I had a profound spiritual experience during that time that set me on a new course, studying metaphysics, Spiritualism, and all things New Age. I tell that story here.
I read dozens of books, went to conferences, and learned a lot during that time.
But in 2010, a young relative committed suicide.
The shock of this loss and its resulting devastation set me on a different path: I wanted to know what happens when you die. (More information in How to Tell If You’re House Is Haunted.)
Perhaps you don’t believe in the continuity of consciousness—the survival of the soul. I’d heard many say, and had said it myself, “There’s no proof of the afterlife.”
Yet I wanted to know for sure.
After seeking spiritual direction, I was led to the Morris Pratt Institute, where I studied Spiritualism for a year. Whether or not you believe there’s proof, there are 175 years of research of research about life after death and spiritualistic phenomena.
I became convinced about the survival of the soul.
I found my way to a Spiritualist church near me. I sat in development circle there and, after attending mediumship workshops in Lily Dale, New York, began to give messages to the living from their departed loved ones.
I completed the two-year ministerial program an became an ordained Spiritualist minister through Fellowships of the Spirit.
Death Perception proves prescient
In 2012, I resurrected Death Perception and began revising it. And I noticed something amazing.
Much of what I had written was already accurate. But my study of Spiritualism and mediumship provided me with the knowledge I needed to fill some holes in my manuscript.
And having experienced psychic phenomena for myself, I was able to add realism to Kennet’s otherwordly perceptions. (For more about this, see Visitation from the Summerland.)
I’ve always loved ghost stories and found them fascinating. Now I know why.
Authentic Spiritualism in Death Perception
The Spiritualism in Death Perception is authentic, drawn from years of study and actual experience. But it’s also a fun read, one which I hope you’ll enjoy.
Nineteen-year-old Kennet Singleton lives with his invalid mother in a personal care facility, but he wants out. He operates the crematory at the local funeral home, where he discovers he can discern the cause of death of those he cremates—by toasting marshmallows over their ashes.
He thinks his ability is no big deal since his customers are already dead. But when his perception differs from what’s on the death certificate, he finds himself in the midst of murderers. To save the residents and avenge the dead, Kennet must bring the killers to justice.
Death Perception is available in trade paperback, Kindle (.mobi) and Nook (.epub) at https://leeallenhoward.com/death-perception/. Reviews appreciated.
- My coming out story
- Principles of Spiritualism: my interpretation
- Can You Be a Christian Medium? How You Can Be Both Christian and Spiritualist
- How to Tell If Your House Is Haunted
- Fellowships of the Spirit
- Lily Dale Assembly
- The Spiritualism of Death Perception
- The Ghost of Backstory in Death Perception
- Read the 1st Chapter of Death Perception
- The Resurrection of Death Perception
- Malina Roos Reviews Death Perception