Interview With the Author of Hell Minus One
Other resources on Hell Minus One:
Hell Minus One – signed verified confessions of satanic ritual abuse – Anne’s parents confessed their atrocities – both in writing and verbally.
book’s web page – http://www.HellMinusOne.com
Book aims to aid victims of ritual abuse By Ben Winslow Deseret News 12/11/08
An Interview With the Author of Hell Minus One
ANNE A JOHNSON DAVIS
My Story of Deliverance From Satanic Ritual Abuse and My Journey to Freedom
Q. What is Hell Minus One about?
Anne: Ultimately, Hell Minus One is a book about hope and empowerment. It is a memoir – a segment of my life. As the subtitle of my book states, it is “My Story of Deliverance from Satanic Ritual Abuse and My Journey to Freedom.”
Hell Minus One also reveals that there are people who engage in satanic ritual abuse. SRA is not a myth, as some claim it to be.
Starting at age three, my parents intermittently used me as a sacrificial object in satanic rituals until I ran away from home at 17.
Hell Minus One tells the story about my abuse, and the steps I took to break free, heal and eventually forgive my tormentors.
It is a story of choices I made, and the miracles and crucial help I received, which empowered me to triumph over a tragic past. It is also about the commitment I made to live a new life of love and purpose.
Q. Why did you write Hell Minus One?
Anne: As I healed, I began to understand that my life and my sanity hadn’t been spared for my sake alone. I felt a calling to bring empowerment and hope to others. My husband, Bruce, was also convinced of that calling, and consistently encouraged me to write a book. He felt that my experiences could make a contribution to the world. At first I resisted, because I wasn’t ready to commit to what I suspected would be an intense and painful effort.
Yet, as I healed, the desire to inspire courage in others grew. Based on my experience, I wanted other victims of abuse to have hope, and to be empowered, to overcome what appear to be insurmountable obstacles; that whatever we face, we can overcome – and be even better. Doors will open and help will come when we are giving our all for good.
Also, I have unique corroborative evidence to SRA. Memories I allowed to come forth, alone and in private, I wrote in explicit allegation letters.
Those letters were responded to with handwritten confessions from the perpetrators, who were my own mother and stepfather. Also, my half-siblings sent letters to authorities that validated my abuse allegations as true.
Two detectives from the Attorney General’s Office subsequently obtained from the perpetrators verbal confessions admitting to their handwritten confessions.
Q. Who should read Hell Minus One?
Anne: My book is a story intended to bring hope to the abused that they have the ability to be healed; hope to those in bondage that they have options (take courage, seek them out). It is also a plea to those in a position to help—such as law enforcement officials, mental health professionals, clergy and even friends—to be open-minded about allegations entrusted to them.
This book is also for those who would love to read a true story about goodness and light overcoming evil and darkness.
Q. What is the most important message or messages in your book?
Anne: Our adversity is not our identity. What we do, or what has been done to us, is not who we are. No matter what has been inflicted upon us – or what mistakes we may have made – we can overcome and be true to our authentic, real self. Goodness and light always overcome evil and darkness. Our God-given ability to define our own life is never lost – never!
This book is for those who need encouragement – or who are in a professional or personal position to support and encourage others.
The subtitle of my book is: “My Story of Deliverance from Satanic Ritual Abuse and My Journey to Freedom.” I often say “deliverance” rather than “escape” because I could not have made it out by myself. I received assistance from a Higher Power. I do not believe that anyone can get out of something this thoroughly enslaving entirely on their own.
This book is more than about overcoming satanic abuse. My message also applies to individuals, organizations and corporations about overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles. We all have Goliaths to face and overcome. This process of facing and overcoming is never easy and requires commitment and hard, hard work. But the work and the result are life-changing. The only way out is through.
Q. How long did it take you to write the book?
Anne: Let’s see – how old am I? It took me a lifetime! Forty-seven years to first live it, and then relive it and deal with it; six years to write it; and finally, eighteen months to edit and publish the final manuscript released in December 2008.
Q. What kind of research did you do?
Anne: What kinds of research? I didn’t research it. First I lived it, and then I remembered it.
Memories to come forward – which they did in crystal clarity – one by one, day after day, week after week, month after month. They formed a shocking and malignant picture of which I had been totally unaware.
I wrote explicit allegation letters and ultimately received handwritten confessions from my parents – my own mother and stepfather. Those written confessions were validated by verbal confessions to Utah Attorney General Detectives who investigated the allegations.
Q. What was the most difficult thing or challenge for you in writing Hell Minus One?
Anne: Finding determination and courage to stay with it for over seven years; writing and re-writing manuscripts that recounted horrifying and painful details, yet balancing the dark elements of my story with the more important shafts of light that diminished the darkness.
Those shafts of light included my faith and spiritual experiences, along with circumstances and priceless people who intersected my life.
Q. In the book’s early chapters, the amount of detail you recall as a three year old is significant. How did you remember all that? Was it always there, or did it come to you as you wrote?
Anne: Most of it I had recalled as I went through therapy. Additional details emerged as I endeavored to get my story into written form over the years.
As my editor and I worked together to finalize the manuscript, at times he asked me if I knew more. In that case, I would employ the same skill I had gained from my counselor. In order to maintain authenticity and accuracy, I gave myself quiet uninterrupted time and simply let the supporting details emerge.
Q. Were your siblings victims like you, or were they Satanists like your parents?
Anne: My half-siblings wrote corroborating letters to church authorities verifying my allegations as true. I respect their privacy, and cannot speak for them.
They were not victims “like me,” because I was separated out from the rest of the family – considered the “bastard child” to be used as a sacrificial object.
Q. How did you get them to write corroborative allegation letters against your parents?
Anne: In the early stages of my therapy, when I still had contact with them, I called all three and asked if they would each write to church authorities corroborating my allegations. All three did.
Q. Your parents’ confession letters are published extensively in your book. You used ellipses extensively in several paragraphs. What did you leave out and why?
Anne: left out parts that were too demented and violent to be published.
This book is less an expose and more a message of hope and encouragement, deliverance and healing.
My intention of including the confession letters in this book was to give the reader enough information to know how bad it was. But I didn’t want it to be so abrasive and offensive that the reader would put the book down.
There are references made to my half-siblings, and for the sake of their privacy, I also excluded that information with ellipses.
Q. Where are your parents’ confession letters now?
Anne: The originals are in a security vault.
Q. Are they available for public scrutiny? If not, why?
Anne: No. They are not available for public scrutiny. They were made available to the Utah Attorney General’s Office during its investigation.
They were also made available to the publisher and editor of the book during the writing of the final manuscript; but, because of the often overtly graphic nature of the contents, and issues of libel and invasion of privacy in naming names, they are not available to the public.
Q. Your parents began to subject you to satanic ritual abuse when you were three years old and continued until you left home at 17. You began to experience episodes of rage in your mid-30s. By the late 1990s, you had finished your therapy and were on your way to recovery. That was over a decade ago, and now you’re in your mid-50s. You say it took you seven years to write Hell Minus One. Why didn’t you write your book sooner? Was it a matter of getting emotionally ready before revealing this memoir?
Anne: It wasn’t until 2001 that I felt I had enough closure and time to write a meaningful book that would help others. Writing Hell Minus One took much longer than I could have ever anticipated, but I was not willing to finalize the manuscript until it was authentic in every detail, and also well written. It took eighteen months to write and edit the final manuscript.
Q. Your parents did horrible and vicious things to you. After each episode, you wouldn’t remember a thing, or connect your dark, painful feelings inside to your parents. What is the medical or psychological definition of this occurrence, and how does it come about? How and why does the brain work this way? To cancel things out?
Anne: Professional definitions that I have heard used are inconclusive. I tend to stay with my own experience rather than attempt to use labels that can be contradictory and misunderstood.
In my case, my psyche prevented me from knowing about my abuse until I was mature enough to take action. Until then, the threats of my perpetrators of being able to tell what I was thinking, even if they were not around, and that I would be destroyed if I remembered anything, kept all of the memories of their abuse in bound psychological silence.
Q. What exactly is Satanic Ritual Abuse?
Anne: To me, SRA is a criminally inhumane and depraved form of devil-worship. The felony crimes include brutal torture and molestation of innocent victims – physically, sexually, mentally and spiritually.
Q. What is its origin? Its history?
Anne: First of all, I’m not an expert on satanic ritual abuse, nor do I want to be. Sometimes while I was being abused, I heard my parents and their cohorts speak of going back into medieval times, and therefore, anything that was done that night didn’t apply to that present time.
However, what they said is not the origin of SRA. There are several resources on the Internet that describe in detail the term and origin of satanic ritual abuse. Unfortunately, what is found there mostly proclaims SRA to be false—to be an urban myth, born during the 1980s and discredited by the late 1990s, largely because of unsubstantiated victim claims. Yet, what happened to me—and my parents’ confession letters—directly challenges those proclamations. In fact, my parents’ confession letters, their confessions to law enforcement, and their excommunication from their church, provides new evidence that researchers and skeptics of SRA haven’t had before. Without such evidence, I can understand why SRA hasn’t received stronger belief and support in the past. One of my hopes is that Hell Minus One will encourage critics—from law enforcement, to mental health professionals and even the media—to reconsider the satanic ritual abuse question.
Q. Why do cultists engage in this behavior? What do they get out of it?
Anne: From my point of view, it was justification to gratify sexualized addiction to violence and perversion. Also, I witnessed them employing the most deranged of behaviors – determined to call down the powers of darkness and evil – believing that it would give them an advantage of power over other people, and extraordinary means to obtain money.
Q. The SRA you experienced occurred in the 1950s and 1960s. If you Google Satanic Ritual Abuse, hundreds of SRA sites are listed, some that offer help, some that go into disturbing detail on how to perform SRA today on family members, friends, etc. How would you compare the SRA you experienced to what is being done today?
Anne: After scanning the Internet about SRA practices for only a few hours more than a year ago, I decided that I would never again subject myself to the mind-rotting material I saw and read.
What I did understand is that the purpose and intent of SRA doesn’t seem to have changed, although the implementation techniques have developed dramatically, becoming more bizarre, brutal and inhumane.
Q. To readers who are victims of SRA, what would you recommend that they do?
Anne: Most importantly, I would want them to know that they have options. I would urge them to have courage and seek out help in any way that they can – to get away and stay away from evil bondage. If your family is sick and toxic – entrenched in evil and criminal activity – don’t go back to them. You can’t save them, but you can save yourself.
I would want them to realize that they have the God-given right to their own lives and identity, and that they have inner signals to guide them as to where to turn.
Q. To readers who worship Satan, or practice SRA, what would you recommend that they do?
Anne: To those who practice Satanism, they have the right to do whatever that want – but not when it is a crime.
Having witnessed the soul-sickening practice of Satanism, I would advise them to get out, whatever the price, before it’s too late.
Q. What purpose or design do you hope or intend Hell Minus One will accomplish?
Anne: My hope and prayer is that Hell Minus One will be a beacon of light out of darkness – a message of hope and courage – that we can all overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles. The epigraph in my book reminds us: we have all been endowed by our Creator with unalienable rights to our lives, liberty and happiness.
Q. In your book, you explain why you and your husband chose not to seek criminal and civil charges against your parents. Now that several years have passed since that decision, do you regret it? Yes or no, why do you feel that way?
Anne: No, I don’t regret it. To this day, I don’t feel that at the time, with society’s mind-set about SRA and false-memory syndrome, it would have resulted in a fair trial. Instead of my parents being the focus, it would have been me and whether or not I was telling the truth—even though my parents had already written confession letters, confessed to detectives from the Utah Attorney General’s Office, and were excommunicated from their church. Something deep inside warned me that it would have resulted in a media explosion that would have torn my little family and me apart.