Purdue University Graduate School
Aud of the Dead_creative thesis_Robin DeLaughter_2023-05-02.pdf (919.77 kB)

Aud of the Dead

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posted on 2023-05-02, 17:19 authored by Robin L DeLaughterRobin L DeLaughter

This creative thesis includes the first six chapters of Aud of the Dead, a novel that combines the genres of speculative science fiction, supernatural fiction, and dystopian fiction. The purpose of the novel is to provide an entertaining example of the soft science fiction genre where the plot exists for the characters, not the other way around.

The novel’s main protagonist is Aud, who was born on Earth in the year 2000. In the year 2024, Earth was invaded and subjugated by aliens called the Impixi. Years later, amid a successful Human rebellion, the actions of another alien species, the Architechs, left Earth in an apocalyptic shroud of toxic dust, vapor, and ash that would ultimately wipe out all life on the planet. But not every Human that died stayed dead. Millions of them became what would later be classified as a new sentient species, named “Anima” by the multigalactic scientific community. The former Humans, however, don’t believe they are a new species; they believe they are the ghosts, or “spectres,” of their living selves, and on their dead homeworld now called Quietus, they are essentially present-day Humans stripped down to the relentless pathos of the living dead. 

The novel begins one hundred years after Earth’s apocalypse when the All Worlds War has come to an end. Aud is returning home from playing her part in the war when she suddenly finds herself responsible for an “Unquiet” called Ometa, a new Anima that was not born Human and did not die one century ago on Quietus. Ometa was an Architech in life, and now Aud must keep that epic secret while teaching Ometa how to navigate existence as an Anima. At the same time, Ometa teaches Aud how to overcome the limitations of living as the dead. 


Degree Type

  • Master of Arts


  • English

Campus location

  • Fort Wayne

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Curtis L. Crisler

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee co-chair

Sarah E. Sandman

Additional Committee Member 2

Kristin K. White

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