These last three months have been a whirlwind of research and writing. In an attempt at authenticity and accuracy, I’ve learned more about serial killers than I thought it was possible for someone to know without actually being a serial killer. To some extent this has been a disturbing journey because some of these individuals make for grim reading.
For example, Jeffrey Dahmer was an American serial killer and sex offender who committed the murder and dismemberment of seventeen men and boys between 1978 and 1991. Many of his later murders involved necrophilia, cannibalism, and the permanent preservation of body parts—typically all or part of the skeleton.
And then there’s Ed Gein, who is classified as a murderer rather than a serial killer because he was only convicted on two charges of murder. I’ve read accounts that suggest he might have been responsible for his brother’s untimely death. But that’s only speculation and remains an unproven accusation. However, Gein also exhumed corpses from local graveyards and fashioned trophies and keepsakes from their bones and skin, all of which adds to my argument that studying his activities made for some grim reading.
Not to mention Peter Kürten: a German serial killer, known as ‘The Vampire of Düsseldorf’. He committed a series of murders and sexual assaults in 1929 in the city of Düsseldorf. In the years before these assaults and murders, Kürten had amassed a lengthy criminal record for offences including arson and attempted murder. He also confessed to the 1913 murder of a nine-year-old girl in Mülheim am Rhein and the attempted murder of a 17-year-old girl in Düsseldorf. Kürten committed the majority of his crimes using a hammer although he did occasionally vary his MO by stabbing or strangling.
It’s been a fascinating experience learning about these warped individuals. But it’s also been a disheartening journey as I’ve uncovered aspects of man’s inhumanity to man that I never imagined I’d encounter.
The book is currently available for pre-order and I’m genuinely looking forward to seeing how it’s received.