May 28, 2014

Just Keep On Truckin' - Bruce Atchison

Have you ever felt like you were flogging a dead horse, yet you believed that the animal would somehow revive and take you somewhere? That's how I feel about my latest memoir. I know that it's a good book and I gave it my best effort, yet marketing it feels like pushing a rope uphill.

In November of 2012, I finally published How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Four-and-a-half-years of effort went into that testimony of God's providential work in my life. I hoped it would bless the lives of its readers and sell enough copies to show Canada Pension Plan that I wasn't merely lounging around all day. After sending out press releases and promoting my new book on my blogs, I waited for the orders to come in.

My hopes were dashed when the expected flood of orders was more like a few drops. Thanks to a few kind friends, I managed to sell my paperbacks at various meetings and a crafts sale. Even so, the number of books sold was, and still is, patheticly low. Even my e-book version, which various folks assured me was the new wave of publishing, didn't sell very well.

So why am I still whipping this dead horse? I believe that my testimony shows, not tells, the great mercy of the heavenly Father and the diabolical nature of cultic organizations. My hope is that victims of toxic churches will discover and identify with the story of my years devoted to the wrong cause. Perhaps what I wrote about turning painful memories to Christ will give them the tools to undo the damage done to them by cruel misleaders.

I also believe that the Lord placed the burden on my heart to tell my story of being deceived and then deprogrammed by his truth. Far too many new believers lack discipleship and become easy prey for cults. In my case, I wanted the power and advanced knowledge offered by the house church. I had a great hunger for the Word of God but the mainline churches never provided me anything substantial. In fact, it was the cult which provided me insubstantial spiritual food. I know I'm not the only one to whom these false shepherds offered outlandish promises of power and secret knowledge.

I plan to quit actively promoting my latest memoir at the end of this year. Short-story writing has interested me for years but I only dabbled in the genre thus far. Because I've had a love for making up stories since I was a boy, I'll give fiction a whirl and see what happens. No other form of writing has attracted my attention as of this writing so I'll try writing short stories.

Bruce Atchison is a legally-blind freelance writer as well as the author of How I Was Razed, Deliverance from Jericho, and When a Man Loves a Rabbit. He lives in a small Alberta hamlet with his house rabbit, Deborah.


  1. We can't always ignore God. You credit God with your desire to tell your story. Good for you, that you followed your heart and God's leading. Not all of us do. Thanks for sharing and good luck with your next project.

  2. Bruce, the Lord has shown me on more that one occasion how, once my words are 'out there', he can use them at his discretion. If your desire is for your experience to be a warning and teaching for others, you can be sure God will use it in that way. Will you know about it? Probably not. Our God doesn't work through numbers, he works through results.

    I have read "How I was Razed" and it struck me at the time that you were able to come to a deep understanding of not only the cult methods that ensnared you, but the aspects of your personality that made you vulnerable. I'm guessing you'd be able to touch on those as themes in numerous short stories directed to many different audiences.

    I say, go for it! The Lord has laid a foundation in you. I can't wait to see what he'll do as he begins building on that.


  3. What Bobbi said... If we are obedient to write, god can and will our words as he sees fit

  4. Bruce,
    I agree with Bobbi. Get your short stories out there and you can always give a link to your book at the bottom.
    And as we write for One, I know He is happy with your listening to Him and obeying Him.
    Blessings to you,

  5. I agree with all those comments. It's hard on the ego and disappointing when we don't get the response we hoped for. Yet God calls us to be faithful, not successful as the world counts success. Good for you!

  6. Yes, Bruce, may God continue to give you strength to follow what God wants you to do and to share what He has done in your life.

  7. Good for you, Bruce, to first of all get your important thoughts out there, and then secondly to be willing to move on to a new project! You never know, someday your book may be in vogue again. Blessings on you and your writing!


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