Sunday, April 6, 2008

My Motives & Motivations for Writing The Bell Witch Unveiled Book

I do have a very specific purpose for my Blog. It is to advertise a book I wrote and published about a woman wrongly accused of being a poltergeist back in 1817-1821. My book is called “The Bell Witch Unveiled At Last! The True Story Of A Poltergeist.” This book is based on probably the most widely-documented ghost story of the state of Tennessee, if not the whole country called the Tennessee Bell Witch, the Bell Witch, or Kate. The spirit is not a witch at all. Instead, it was a “noisy ghost” who made nightly visitations to the BELL family during that time period. Andrew Jackson was even reported to have had a run-in with this spirit. Since people back then didn’t seem to know the term poltergeist and it haunted the Bell family, it evolved that people called this spirit the ‘Bell Witch’.

I started researching and writing this story back in 1993. I found out that a woman named Cate Batts was given all the blame for being the poltergeist doing the haunting, even though she was a living woman at the time. Either that, or she was given the blame for having engineered the haunting somehow, by those who knew her to be a living woman. The fact was that she was psychic and a healer, trained in the Native American healing methods by the mother of her best friend, Sol Grundy (not his real last name). She was quite eccentric and ahead of her time.

The archives all indicate that she only had two sons and one daughter, none of whom lived to have children of their own. It turns out that those three were actually her nephews and niece by an In-Law. On my second research trip to Adams, Tennessee, I personally met three of her direct descendants. The wife of a 4th direct descendant never admitted her connection; however, she was the one who hooked me up with one of those three who introduced me to the other two. I found out that Cate Batts actually had five daughters and one son who lived into their majority. Think about it. If your mother was accused of witchcraft back in the early 1800s, what chance did you have to make a good marriage or any kind of marriage at all? Her oldest daughter, Rebecca Batts, was the 2nd wife of Solomon James. She married before all this business of the false accusations and superstition got started. She either had 12 or 13 children by Solomon. It was difficult to know for certain the exact number as all three of his wives had the first name of Rebecca. Cate’s youngest daughter, Nancy Batts, never married nor had children. Cate’s other three daughters, Mary, Sarah, and Rhoda, had several out-of-wedlock children between them. Eventually, Sarah married a man 39 years her senior. Mary and Rhoda never wed at all. Her son, John, moved to Illinois when he became an adult, disassociating himself totally from the entire dramatic, traumatic situation.

In my 2 years of doing research and trying to follow every lead in courthouses and libraries in Middle Tennessee, Rocky Mount and Raleigh, North Carolina, Spartanburg, South Carolina, and Isle of Wight, Virginia, I found out that an elaborate cover-up was perpetuated by the Bell family and the Batts family. The Bell family did not want the reputation of their patriarch, John Bell, to be spoiled by the hint of scandal. They either did not know, or did not want it known, that their father had allegedly perpetuated a crime back when he lived in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. The Batts family did not wish to experience any further persecution by superstitious ‘friends’, neighbors, and nosy, interfering strangers.

By the way, I published this book using the pen name of DJ Lyons to protect my anonymity and the anonymity of family members and friends who would rather not have it widely known that I wrote a book about a poltergeist. Or shall I say, co-wrote? For truth be known, I actually brought through or channeled this book. Though as Eckart Tolle, author of “The New Earth: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE” stated in his first telecast with Oprah:

“I always honored that space of, I'm ready for the writing to happen. I'm not saying that the writing happened automatically. My mind was involved. It wasn't a channeled book as such. It was inspired, but not channeled, so it involved my thinking processes too. … thinking process had to be inspired from something deeper. You can't rely on your thinking processes only to – and produce something that is powerful and original.”

That’s why I say that I co-wrote the book with Cate Batts and the other key characters of this saga as I took every human footstep possible to be able to prove or support the writing that took place. I spent hundreds of hours turning over every stone, so to speak, of whatever was available to be found on the subject. As the former wife of a statistician, I wished to be able to support the data I was putting forth as much as it was humanly possible. In the end, I decided to represent the book as fiction, due to the fact that there was no way I could ever prove every word that I wrote. I figured that my readers would simply have to trust their gut, so to speak. The book would either have the ring of truth for them or it would not. I had no control over the outcome of how others will take my book. I personally believe every word to be true, with the small exception of how I represented my first meeting with Cate in the Prelude Chapter called “Prelude: Cate and Sol Speak from the Other Side.” Blog 6 below details my first actual meeting.

Blog 1:

Blog 2:

Blog 3:

Blog 4:

Blog 5:

Blog 6:

I finished the book the end of 1995, sent it off unsuccessfully to a limited number of publishers, and then sat on it for many years. The time just did not feel right to once again seek out a publisher. I really believe that Oprah had to expose the world to her mind-expanding efforts to help raise mass-consciousness. Shirley MacLaine had to put out the books and movies that she did. J.K. Rowling had to write the entire Harry Potter series. Esther and Jerry Hicks had to put out their Law of Attraction books and channeled workshops of Abraham. Rhonda Byrne had to put out her book and movie called “The Secret.” Also, the Quantum Physics docudrama “What the Bleep” movie starring Marlee Matlin had to be produced. With all these productions, books, websites, and more, I finally felt that the time was right to once again seek out a publisher. PublishAmerica agreed to publish the book on Halloween day of 2007. I finished my final edit of the book on New Year’s Day of 2008. The first copy of my book went to print in early March of 2008.

In the meantime, I created a website called: Bell Witch Unveiled. I have now transferred all the pertinent information to my other website called Ask DJ Lyons: Books, Shows, & Workshops and closing down the Bell Witch Unveiled website as of the end of May of 2011. Ask DJ will remain open indefinitely.

In a relatively short time, multiple on-line bookstores have been selling my books. For a long time, I updated a website page on the Bell Witch Unveiled website every time I found a new store to add to the list. It almost felt like Christmas every time I discovered a new bookstore or blog or website featuring details about my book. I’m not yet certain if any ‘bricks and mortar’ stores are carrying a copy. I must admit that this will be the thrill of my life to walk into an actual bookstore and see a copy of my book sitting on their shelves. That will be the actualization of a 40-year long-cherished dream as I have longed to be a published author since I was 9 years old.

I have cut this page out as my PublishAmerica is now selling my book for the best price ever of $9.95 to $12.95. I doubt any of those other sites will sell it for such a great price. Here is the link to that page.

I plan to make myself available for book signings and a one-woman show called ‘The Bell Witch Unveiled’. I perform this story in first person, as if I am Catt Batts telling her tale.

This is the link to the press release that will be sent out by my publisher to Middle and East Tennessee newspapers:

This is the link to the page to book me for book signings and my one woman show. It also describes how libraries and retailers can get a copy of my book for 40% off.

So that is my very long explanation or disclaimer to my current focus.

I absolutely do believe in Jesus Christ and I actively strive to assimilate that Christ Consciousness into my daily life. In other words, I strive to do something that I describe with the acronym “CASTLE” – Christlike Action Speaking & Thinking Listening Energy. Striving to live up to that idea is an ever-expanding work in progress that will take me through the course of my life. I am a Christian. I also am a person one would consider to be into the “New Age” philosophy. God is a 24/7 presence in my life. I do not consider myself to be religious; however, I am extremely spiritual.

Part of my devoting 2 years of my life to the researching and writing of the Bell Witch Unveiled book was the CASTLE philosophy. I wished to clear the name of Cate Williams Batts and relieve some of the pain of her descendants. Not only that, I wanted to eliminate the fear still felt by so many Middle Tennessee residents still impacted by this saga. I also wished to bring light to a story that has been shrouded in fear and mystery for far too long.

Take the best of of care everyone! Thanks for listening!

With Love and Light to all of you and yours,
DJ Lyons
Author of “The Bell Witch Unveiled At Last! The True Story Of A Poltergeist”

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