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                                 Our Fascination with the Paranormal

Most of us love things that go bump in the night and scary stories are as old as the earliest campfires, but why? What makes us so intrigued with the unexplainable and especially those things that seem to raise goosebumps on our arms?

I've thought about this a lot since a recent interviewer asked me if I'd ever had a paranormal experience. I said, "No, but spooky things sometimes happen." I remember the attic trap door that closed for no explainable reason, the feelings of deja vu when visiting a place I'd never been before, and the campfire that seemed to form ghostly figures when we'd been telling scary stories. Especially the small log that tumbled out of the fire when the storyteller reached the spot where the victim's head was chopped off and we all screamed. Spooky! 

Imagination or reality? 
So what's the difference? Maybe it's all in the interpretation.My logical left brain always wants concrete answers, so it refuses to attribute supernatural answers to unexplained happenings. If I were to ask, left brain would roll her eyes and say the answer is logical, I simply don't know it. "Fair enough," the right brain acknowledges, but does that necessarily exclude a paranormal answer? Hmm. It's an intriguing thought. Unseen worlds and unnatural laws that might exist all around us. 

Sooo, how do we know the correct answer? The simple response is we don't, and that is one of the main draws of supernatural fiction - the ability, even the right, to imagine those answers, to participate in the creative process.

From haunted houses . . .


                                           to an uneasy walk through a quiet graveyard at dusk . . .

                                                                                                         Or a lively adventure with a superhero . . .

authors and readers have created in their minds the characters and stories that get the blood racing, the adrenaline flowing, tales that pull us out of and beyond ourselves. We invent stories that are larger than life or at least larger than our lives.

Call it escapism or a recognition of an alternate reality, but a tentative belief in the paranormal seems to be a necessary part of human existence. To see more than our immediate world. To go wherever our imagination can take us. To seek out other worlds and beyond.

Have you had a paranormal experience? Do you believe they happen?



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