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June 21, 2024
A sponsored Q&A with the author of 'My Diary After Death'
My Diary After Death records the experiences of Nace O’Rourke, the soul of a soldier who was killed in Iraq. With Recon, the soul of a military dog, Nace travels to see his family on Earth and family as spirits, to study the soul’s makeup, travel at the speed of thought, meet historical figures, battle demons, and be rescued by angels from the gate to hell. This is Joe Cassilly’s second book.
What is the story behind My Diary After Death—why did you write it?
I believe in judgment on the last day, so I wondered what happens to our souls between our death and the day of judgment at the second coming. Wouldn’t our souls have the opportunity to improve and seek enlightenment? Won’t our souls have marvelous experiences and meet interesting souls and angels? I wondered how The Divine Comedy or The Great Divorce might have portrayed the afterlife in light of recent scientific discoveries and theories. The biblical version of creation is consistent with the theories of creation and evolution. The universe is evidence of a Divine Creator. In a time when children never hear a mention of Jesus and the strength He brings, they idolize comic book superheroes and fantasy alter egos to feel strength beyond themselves. The book is an adventure of a soldier discovering his spiritual self. I want to create a message; identify your soul as your superhero and forge a relationship with the Lord. I hope that My Diary After Death will be a catalyst for self-reflection. During the writing, I came to understand that you cannot give or get forgiveness unless it is asked for. Forgiveness is at least a two-party transaction.
My Diary After Death is your second published book. Was the writing process different for it than for your first book, Decoration for Valor?
Decoration for Valor was based almost entirely on my life’s experiences or those of people I know. The process of writing became a reliving of experiences and an emotional struggle that I often had to sit aside. It took 20 years to write. My Diary After Death is based on dreams and thoughts that I cannot explain other than divine inspiration. I cannot explain how I thought of the concepts of the hereafter and was led to certain materials during my research. It is more about a message. I learned a lot from Decoration for Valor about the value of writing in the first person that I applied to this book. This book flowed and took about a year to write. There was much time spent reading about different religions and the thoughts of historical figures on different concepts of spirit.
Who is your ideal reader and why? It could be a particular person, or a kind of person, or someone imaginary.
My children and grandchildren. Someone who wants an adventure or a reader who is aware of their spiritual sense and hopes to develop their soul’s ability to reach out and feel a relationship to the Divine Creator and his Son and Spirit.
What is the one thing you most want to tell readers, about you or your book?
As a result of injuries in Vietnam, I have spent every day of the past 54 years in a wheelchair and I find the strength to keep going in my faith. I hope the reader will understand that they are a soul with a mortal body. It is necessary to ask for forgiveness and forgive yourself, not to wallow in resentment or regret.
What’s next for you?
My immediate challenge is to promote My Diary After Death and, if there is an audience, find a way to introduce a sequel.