More About the Author
Jon Atack was born in the cathedral city of Lichfield, in the heart of England, in 1955. He left school at 17 to play drums in various rock bands. When he was 19, he joined the Scientology cult. Although he was never a live-in member, he took many courses and 25 of the available levels of the 'Bridge' - to Operating Thetan Section V. Jon left the cult in 1983, appalled by its aggressive behaviour towards members. He refused to 'disconnect' (or shun) a close friend and was shocked to find that eleven senior members of the cult - including the leader's wife - had been sentenced to prison terms for kidnapping, breaking and entering, theft, burglary and false imprisonment, based on their own confessions.
Jon put aside his career as an artist (www.jonatack.com) to help those harmed by the cult's hypnotic practices. In 12 years, he saw over 500 former members and helped many to recover the money that had been extracted from them by Scientology's hard selling techniques. He was active on over 150 court cases and was consulted by many government organizations. Jon also gave several conference papers and his work was supported by more than 40 academics, including Professor Stephen Kent, head of sociology and history of religion at Alberta University, who said that Jon's work was beyond the standard for a doctoral thesis.
Jon was subjected to constant harassment by Scientologists. His house was picketed by placard carrying cult members. Spurious reports were made to various authorities. Rumours were spread. He was falsely accused of child abuse, attempted murder, rape and heroin addiction. Jon was followed by private investigators, one of whom tricked him out of the manuscript to his book, A Piece of Blue Sky, so that the cult could sue prior to publication.
Jon's book A Piece of Blue Sky, was published in 1990, after a court battle in New York. It became an Amazon top 100 best seller. However, because of a precedent over the letters of JD Salinger, 60 passages in the book had been paraphrased. This included some of the most important material from Jon's vast collection. In 2013, the book was reissued with all 60 passages back in place. The new edition is called Let's sell these people A Piece of Blue Sky, to distinguish it from the earlier edition, which remains in print, without the author's consent.
Jon is the author of many papers about Scientology, most of which are available on the internet. He has blogged at Tony Ortega's Underground Bunker since the Spring of 2013 - http://tonyortega.org/category/scientology-mythbusting/. His concern is for the recovery of former members, from the hypnotic enslavement of Scientology.
Jon continues to paint and play drums. He has written several novels, including Voodoo Child (slight return) and the upcoming Halcyon Daze. He has also made a character by character translation of Lao Tze's Tao Te Ching, which will be published in 2015. He lives in a charming village near Nottingham, where, as Voltaire advised, he cultivates his garden. Jon had four children and one grandchild.