My first novel, A Train Called Forgiveness was published in April, 2012. It’s a story about a young man coming to terms with childhood trauma. Currently, I’m working on my second book. The second book continues to follow the life of A Train Called Forgiveness’ protagonist, Andy Burden. Andy was told that cult leader Peter Smith died in 2000. However, Andy’s brother Simon finds evidence to the contrary. Andy begins an investigation that leads to some interesting discoveries. Expect the second book, At the Crossing of Justice and Mercy in April, 2013.
I also write songs, poems, and commentary. My work covers a large variety of themes, including communication, religion, music, philosophy, and psychology. The songs often revolve around universal problems in relationships. The poems often reflect upon daily living, painting short, detailed pictures in words. My commentary and longer stories study the greater human condition. I like to challenge the reader to think, by posing questions, as well as providing personal insight.
“I was in the cult, but I was not of the cult!”
If you want an account of what it was like to be a kid forced to live in a cult – to grow up enduring physical and emotional abuse; yet somehow rising above it and keeping the sense of self, of individualism within and intact; you will want to read this book! You will feel like the author, Dan Erickson, is sitting across from you telling the story. He reveals the short and long term effects of what living in a cult does to a young man. You might start wondering, “How could he forgive the horrible cult leader and his parents?”
I read Dan Erickson’s book “A Train Called Forgiveness” in two nights. Two nights of tears, sadness, laughter, disbelief, and most of all, hope. Hope that all of us can forgive others for their trespasses against us, and most important of all, forgive one’s self. “A Train Called Forgiveness” is a beautiful message about the healing power of forgiveness and the path that the main character, Andy Burden took, to forgive and ultimately, heal.
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A writer’s fundamental task is to draw the reader into a new perspective…to help the reader understand and experience things they have never, personally, experienced.
But what if that world is so bizarre and so far removed from most readers’ experience that they will be unlikely to relate to the story?
In “A Train Called Forgiveness” Dan Erickson artfully leads the reader into the world of an abusive cult, then through the beginning of the process of being freed from the grip of fear and bitterness resulting from deep psychological scars.
How can a “typical” reader relate to such a story? How can we feel the pain, trauma, fear and helplessness of a child raised in such an environment?
Somehow, through a combination of novel, prose, and poetry, Erickson enables us to do exactly that…to experience just a little of the brutality of his own life story.
And through that experience, he leaves us with a little bit different view of humanity, of life, of God, of purpose…and of hope!
A compelling story, masterfully communicated!
Author of “So You are a Believer Who has been through Divorce: A Myth-Busting Biblical Perspective on Divorce”