Email Conversations With My Ol’ Friend Bill (about UFO’s!)

29 Nov

A few weeks ago, I sent my friend Bill a link to an article in the Denver Post about Steven Hawkings warning that we’re going to need a new planet sometime in the future. He responded; then I responded, then he responded back, etc. After I few exchanges I felt that we had some pretty interesting observations about life, the universe, and everything.  So with Bill’s permission, I’m reprinting those emails here, in the fond hope that someone besides us can have some fun with our arcane comments. Bill is an amateur astronomer, so he’s starry-eyed but still skeptical…

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 12: Professor Stephen Hawking onstage during the New Space Exploration Initiative "Breakthrough Starshot" Announcement at One World Observatory on April 12, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – APRIL 12: Professor Stephen Hawking onstage during the New Space Exploration Initiative “Breakthrough Starshot” Announcement at One World Observatory on April 12, 2016

Email #1:

From: PAUL HILL
To: “taxibill”
Sent: Friday, November 18, 2016 11:43 AM
Subject: Fw: Stephen Hawking just gave humanity a due date for finding another planet – The Denver Post

Interesting take from Hawking…

P.

Email #2:

From: Bill
Sent: Friday, November 18, 2016 1:23 PM
To: PAUL HILL
Subject: Re: Stephen Hawking just gave humanity a due date for finding another planet – The Denver Post

I dunno. Hawking’s always been kind of a pessimist. He’s the one that said we need to quit broadcasting out presence to the universe (via radio/tv/communications, etc.) lest we draw the attention of a hostile alien culture.

I myself am a bit of a pessimist. I agree about the dangers of nuclear annihilation, unsustainable use of resources and the rest. We have a new president coming in January who seems to be determined to set us on a course which will pound us (those who survive) back into the stone age. Mel Gibson’s post apocalyptic “Mad Max” is beginning to look more like prophecy than fiction.

Should we discover an Earth like exoplanet, there is the problem of getting there. Current technologies would take thousands of years to reach the nearest star. I think we’re pretty much stuck with Mother Earth, and we’d better get our shit straight or it’s the end of humanity.

I for one would be satisfied with the discovery of extraterrestrial life, be it intelligent or microbial. I believe the laws of evolution are as universal as the laws of physics. Where there is life, there is evolution. Where there is evolution, the development of intelligence is inevitable.

Maybe those crop circle creating entities will come out of the closet and save us. Who knows?

Email #3:

From: PAUL HILL
To: Bill Kast
Sent: Friday, November 18, 2016 10:46 PM
Subject: Re: Stephen Hawking just gave humanity a due date for finding another planet – The Denver Post

Bill,

Okay. I like you believe that the earth is being run down to the nub, and that Trump will hasten its demise via his anti-scientific policies. I like you believe that there is intelligent life somewhere in the universe other than us.

But you don’t believe we’ll ever have the technology to travel to distant planets. If that’s true, then any other distant civilization would not have developed that technology either. Consequently you can’t believe that the UFO phenomena could be craft from another world, since they would not have that “impossible” technology any more than we would ever have. Am I understanding you correctly?

If so, that’s where our beliefs differ. I believe that a statistically-significant percentage of UFO sightings are real craft from another world who have mastered interplanetary travel in time and/or space. There is simply too much evidence from credible sources. If not, what are they? If I believe that, I have to believe that the corresponding technology exists for these aliens to get here. I don’t have to understand their motivation to believe this. So I believe that if they somehow developed that technology, given enough time and other resources, we will too.

Then as Hawking says, we’ll be able to escape this planet before they hang out the “closed” sign. I find that neither optimistic nor pessimistic; I think its just logical if one believes in the underlying premise of valid UFO phenomena. If I were to conjecture about alien’s motivation to visit us, maybe its to show us that they exist and demonstrate that we too can develop a way to get to their planet. Maybe when they feel the time is right they’ll teach us how. An evolutionary adaptive mutation with a little help from our new friends who don’t want to see our civilization collapse. I know that’s a violation of Star Trek’s “prime directive,” but I digress.

Most unlike the sci-fi cliché of “they’re here to destroy us!” That belief is more a product of our own violent tendencies than anything else. After all, that’s what we tried to do to the First Americans. But I digress again.

Continue the conversation, please…

P.

Email #4:

From: Bill
Sent: Saturday, November 19, 2016 5:25 PM
To: PAUL HILL
Subject: Re: Stephen Hawking just gave humanity a due date for finding another planet – The Denver Post

Paul,

Your logical analysis of my statements are flawless.350px-alcubierre

My conclusions about the unlikelihood of interstellar travel are based on current technology and technology on the near horizon. Who knows what the future may bring? I’m basing my conclusions on the speed of light being the limiting factor. This precludes the possibility of technology that would warp space-time, thus bringing distant points closer. But so far, this technology remains in the realm of science fiction. But not entirely…see
Alcubierre drive – Wikipedia

I’m still not totally sold on UFO’s, but I’m willing to keep an open mind. I agree that if they indeed are here, their intentions are to observe and perhaps at some point guide us along. They may be waiting to see if we will come to our senses before we destroy ourselves and/or the planet. If their intentions were hostile, we’d be toast already!

–Bill

Email #5:

From: PAUL HILL
Sent: Saturday, November 19, 2016 11:43 PM
To: Bill Kast
Subject: Re: Stephen Hawking just gave humanity a due date for finding another planet – The Denver Post

Speaking of sci fi, here’s quote from the Wiki article:

“Relation to Star Trek warp drive . . .The Star Trek television series used the term “warp drive” to describe their method of faster-than-light travel. Neither the Alcubierre theory, nor anything similar, existed when the series was conceived, but Alcubierre stated in an email to William Shatner that his theory was directly inspired by the term used in the show, and references it in his 1994 paper.”

Legends, myths and stories abound about our ancient ancestors having been visited by ET’s. Petroglyphs and pictographs have been found that depict people in what appear to be space helmets and drawings of UFO’s are not uncommon. How did they know about these things? Dreams? Visits? Could ancient astronauts have really visited our planet during its more primitive development, and were the people given knowledge that otherwise would have taken centuries longer to develop themselves? We really still don’t know how the ancient Egyptians constructed the pyramids; or how the Easter Island statutes were erected, or how the Mayans built perfect brick walls in their cities with only primitive carving and measurement tools. Check out this geo-design (though there are terrestrial theories about these) that can only be recognized from a high altitude. Created from 500 BC to 500 Ad…

nazca
The Nasca are probably best known for the famous “Nazca Lines”, giant geoglyphs which they left etched into the surface of the vast, empty desert plain that lies between the Peruvian towns of Nazca and Palpa.

 

 

This is even scarier… Jesus and UFOs in Religious Art-

The Baptism of Christufojesus2 . . . “Were the Magi aliens? A disk shaped object is shining beams of light down on John the Baptist and Jesus – Fitzwilliam Musuem, Cambridge, England – Painted in 1710 by Flemish artist Aert De Gelder. It depicts a classic, hovering, silvery, saucer shaped UFO shining beams of light down on John the Baptist and Jesus. What could have inspired the artist to combine these two subjects?”

This is all wild speculation to be sure, and there may be the ever-popular “rational explanations,” but how do we know alien influence didn’t happen? And why couldn’t it happen again at a critical stage in our future development if we are at the edge of disaster? Some far off alien society may already have an investment in us, and may not want to lose it!

P.

Email #6 & 7:

From: Bill
Sent: Thursday, November 24, 2016 8:51 PM
To: PAUL HILL
Subject: More on the subject of aliens

http://www.universetoday.com/132102/what-if-we-do-find-aliens/

What If We Do Find Aliens? – Universe Today
www.universetoday.com    Space and Astronomy news
x282-what-if-we-do-find-aliens-700x432-png-pagespeed-ic-mdeevhxjgdp2_e8gwsfu

Re: More on the subject of aliens
PAUL HILL
Reply|
Fri 11/25, 1:17 AM
taxibill

If you recall the 1955 sci fi movie, This Island Earth, you may remember that those aliens gave the puny earthlings plans to build a spaceship to go to their planet. If it wasn’t for the damn mutants once they got there, it could have been the start of a beautiful friendship.

P.

Email #8:

Bill,

Some very interesting footage on this hour long youtube vid. Have no idea of the credibility of same, especially the last clip. But apparently there’s been a surge in UFO activity and reportage since the election and some John Podesta WikiLeaks emails. Conspiracy theories wrapped up UFO stories? In any case, an entertaining hour.

P.

From: PAUL HILL
Sent: Sunday, November 27, 2016 1:40 AM
To: PAUL HILL
Subject: HOLD ON!!! BEST UFO Sightings October 2016!! Global Alien INVASION Happening NOW!! – YouTube

 

Haven’t yet heard back from Bill on this video. Should be interesting. Will keep you posted . . .

 

Feel free to leave a comment below, or send a tweet: @lanesendthebook
Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved
For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:
http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com
All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

Comments & Reviews: LANES END

27 Oct

final-cover300x480Lanes End, A Journey Into the Paranormal is printed and available for shipping! For more information about the book and how to order, CLICK HERE.

If you’ve already read the book and would like to comment or contribute your own review, feel free to do so. Just click on the Contact Us link (above), and fire away in the comment box provided. Then we’ll publish it on this page.

For those who have already been promised a book, please send your mailing address so we can ship you a copy!

 

 

Reviews/Comments/Recommendations

Feel free to leave a comment below, or send a tweet: @lanesendthebook
Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved
For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:
http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com
All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

This May Scare You

29 Sep

highway-at-glorious-sunset-232711Do you like to read a ghost story before bedtime? Then you’re more likely to have a scary dream. If you have a scary dream in a place that is pre-disposed to being haunted, you have a greater chance of a supernatural entity visiting you in that dream. If you wake up and remember that dream, the entity may make a new friend . . . you.

The paranormal community is fond of saying its “scientific.” But where does traditional science come-in on this, if at all? Well, so far it only supports the first of these assertions– that you can cause dreams by reading before you sleep, for example. Once we venture beyond that, we cross the line from science to anecdotal paranormal evidence. That’s not supported by the scientific method, but does document incidents reported by credible experiencers and investigators using modern technology. There is in fact substantial such evidence of ghosts and dead people appearing in the dreams of the living.

If we go even further, we can speculate that if you go to sleep in a known haunted place, like some of us investigators have been known to do during their long middle-of-the-night wait for something weird to happen, entities who might be in the same room have a much greater chance of trying to communicate or make physical contact with you. Its easier and much less threatening for them when you’re asleep.

How do we prove this kind of stuff? Traditional scientists just don’t do paranormal field research. Paranormal investigators do. But up until now, the technology used by today’s ghost hunters has been used only for measuring the effects of paranormal entities who exist in certain places. Since we can’t wait for normal science to catch up with this kind of research, I’m suggesting we use our gadgets to measure not just the existence of ghosts, but for a change figure out what’s going on with us live humans. We may find out some interesting things. Its not just how do we affect them? Its how do they affect us?

Can we do an experiment to find out if ghosts or the dead really enter our dreams and become a temporary or lasting part of our consciousness? Can we test what happens when we wake up and remember our dreams? Can we find out if we’ve formed a relationship with someone who is no longer with us? Yes we can. Most dreams are not recalled, but vivid nightmares tend to wake us up! In that brief state between sleeping and wakefulness, lots of information about the dream is remembered and analyzed by the dreamer. Before they fade away, and as those memories linger before we rise, the experience can be imprinted in our brain (recorded into long-term memory). Then and only then is the dreamer most open to making a lasting connection with the entity who might have caused the dream in the first place (btw, those who don’t immediately wake up from such a nightmare will probably not remember it when they do awake).

So let’s conjure up an experiment! We’ll need a brave volunteer willing to spend the night in a paranormaly active environment, have him or her read a scary book, then go to sleep hooked up to an electroencephalograph (EEG) machine to measure their brain waves and rapid-eye movements (REM’s). If they awake from a dream during their sleep (if they don’t wake up themselves, we’ll wake them up as we’ll be able to tell they’re dreaming from their brainwaves and REM’s), we’ll then take notes while they report their experience. Others will measure the existence of any nearby phenomena while the subject was dreaming. Finally, we’ll correlate that information with whatever type of brain waves turned up on the EEG. Pretty cool, ‘eh?eeg

What’s the worst that could happen? Nothing. No dreams; no ghosts. What’s the best? Evidence of paranormal visitation while the subject reported a dream with that entity playing a starring role!

I’ll be doing this experiment in the future. Anybody have a spare EEG machine in their garage? Who wants to be the guinea pig? In any case, I’ll have to wait until my next $15,000 to get that EEG unit. Maybe I can find a used one on E-Bay.

Who knew reading a scary story could start all this in motion? Next time you do on some dark and stormy night, be prepared for a visit when you fall asleep. “They” may be watching you read.


Feel free to leave a comment below, or send a tweet: @lanesendthebook

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.


 

Sudden Death

16 Jul

A bad accident . . . a sudden transition.

Ghostly spirit or an optical illusion? Saul Vazquez will only say that this photo has not been altered.

Ghostly spirit or an optical illusion? Saul Vazquez will only say that this photo has not been altered. SOURCE: photographer’s Facebook page via CNN News

 

I don’t know if you’ve seen this amazing photo virally making its way across the Internet, but here it is taken by a trucker’s passenger as he passed by an accident. Clearly seen suspended in the air between the two ambulances is an anomaly that looks like a human shape.

The fatal accident involved a motorcycle, and according to reports the victim later died at a local hospital. Is this mysterious figure a paranormal phenomenon, or can it be explained in the normal course of events?

Let’s first go over what it might be if not paranormal . . . possibly a photographic error of some sort? Maybe. This is the go to argument for most skeptics who view such evidence. But short of an examination of the camera and an analysis of the conditions under which the image was shot, there’s no way to prove that it was. Well then, what about some natural phenomenon like reflected mist or the ever-popular swamp gas? The background does seem to be dense and humid. Maybe. If not that, could the pic be a fake, where the presenter morphed a ghostly image into an otherwise normal photo using his computer? Possible. But only an examination of the photo by a digital expert could prove that likelihood.

Finally, is this photo the product of an hallucination or some other psychological issue connected to the observer?  I suppose anything’s possible, but most cameras don’t take pictures of hallucinations, let alone images of what a person unconsciously really wants to see (that would be a great invention!).

Was the phenomenon visible to the naked eye by anyone else who was busy at the scene? How did the apparition just happen to be caught as a photo? Taken a fraction of a second later, the anomaly might not have been visible to the camera.

Close-up

Close-up

Let’s get to the paranormal possibilities . . . is this the image of a dying person in the process of crossing-over to the “other side?” Or is it his ghost? If the unfortunate victim didn’t die until he reached the hospital, then technically-speaking he’s not a ghost (yet).

Are we then looking at the physical manifestation of a Near Death Experience (NDE)? Survivors of such experiences live to tell about it. Those unfortunates who don’t come back may have their NDE transformed into a DE (death experience). We will never know about those who had an NDE just before they died. Not in this life anyway. But does everyone have an NDE prior to their impending end, and are given the choice of returning or moving on?

As an author and paranormal investigator, I’m especially interested in such evidence, as rare as it is. I’m not trying to capitalize on the sad passing of this man, which was a tragedy for his family and stressful for first responders. But NDE’s are an important part my book, Lanes End. One of my characters explains the phenomenon better than I can (Dr. Zarkovian is a therapist and paranormal investigator educated in Vienna, speaking with scientist Dr. Sidney Green) . . .

      “Thus my interest in the paranormal aspects of the case ve’re investigating. Trust me, there are many. I have to be able to account for the existence of ghosts, or earthbound spirits if you vant to call them dat.

      In my thinking, there’s a difference between those who die naturally, or perhaps suddenly from a heart attack or such during surgery, and those who meet a violent death. The first groups appear to experience NDE’s if they survive, and we have to assume that those who don’t may also have an NDE, but then a DE . . .  a death experience. If the process functions as it should at the time, their transition forward and backward, or just forward, flows with no glitches. My concern is vith the glitches.”

     “So what glitches?” Sid asked.

     “Sudden or violent death that the nervous system couldn’t possibly anticipate or be warned about. Victims of war, murders, suicides, horrible accidents, and so on. I vould submit that the body under those circumstances is so shocked and traumatized, involving a cascading failure of organs and systems all in a instant, that the transition process is short-circuited. Then they may not have an NDE and their DE might be interrupted, leaving them stuck between this vorld and the next.”

An NDE Avoidedstory from the Denver Post


Feel free to leave a comment below, or send a tweet: @lanesendthebook

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.


Movie Review: the Conjuring 2

22 Jun

It was a hot and stormy night. Actually it was hot and dry, having hit almost 100 degrees in our little mountain town in Colorado. Since we do not have air conditioning, my wife and I did something we rarely do: we went to the movies.

conjuring2There we watched the latest incarnation of the semi-fictional adventures of Ed and Lorraine Warren, the original ghost hunters.
The Conjuring 2 follows up where the commercially successful original left off (The Conjuring). Since the sequel will probably be a summer box-office smash, the two will soon be a cinema franchise. Watch for the Conjuring 3 coming soon to a theater near you.

But back to our movie. A rollicking, scary, funhouse summer flick to be sure; the kind we boys used to take our high school girlfriends to for lots of clingy hugs.

SARCASM ALERT! When I get especially critical, I tend to drip sarcasm, so please forgive me if some splatters on this page. I just can’t help myself.

The plot is based on the “true” paranormal investigations of Ed and Lorraine Warren, who back in the late 70’s allegedly looked into the haunting of a flat in London (the Enfield Haunting). It was occupied by a recently-single mom and her brood of kids, including one otherwise charming pre-teen girl who became the spokesperson for the unseen entity also sharing their quarters.

The girl is well-played by Madison Wolfe; the semi-hysterical mom also well done by Frances O’Connor. Both Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga reprise their roles as Ed and Lorraine. She could probably play an absolutely perfect angel if the right role came along, but I can’t vouch for Wilson’s inexplicable Elvis imitation somewhere around mid-film, even though I have to assume it was in-character for Ed Warren.

Anyway, to cut to the proverbial chase . . . the young girl character draws heavily on the female star of the 1973 release of The Exorcist, only unlike that girl, this time the possessed was up and out of bed while running around causing all kinds of mischief. Ed and Lorraine dutifully chase her (“it”) like some civilian geek squad on assignment from “the Church” that wouldn’t get itself officially involved. In the predictable end, the geek squad wins and the evil is vanquished.

Conjuring 2 is not a bad movie, but its also not a ghost movie. It is a demon movie (and not about a poltergeist, as the entity is commonly referred to). So don’t expect scary ghosts. It has instead more than the usual number of jumps and startles substituting for a dramatic build-up of genuine fear, and the setting of the house is artfully scary– what one would expect for a not-so-quiet demon who likes to party.

I concede that this movie was not made for aging paranormal investigators like ourselves; its aimed squarely at the 18 to 34 demographic. They will probably like it. But for us fully-formed (for better or worse) adults in the room, it is as they say “what it is.” What is instructive about it is the more valuable lesson for types like us. Its the distinction between “horror” and “supernatural” stories, with Conjuring 2 being an excellent example of the former.

What is true horror? Its like pornography: you know it when you see it. But instead of sexual arousal, horror causes sudden emotional stimulation characterized by fear, loathing, and an adrenalin rush that energizes a flight or fight response. Was the Exorcist horror or supernatural? When I first saw it in a theater, I witnessed grown men get up and run out of the place! But I read the novel before I ever saw the motion picture . . . I couldn’t sleep the first few nights– too scared. My opinion: definitely Horror/Supernatural for the movie; Supernatural/Psychological for the book.

To be real Horror with a capital H, a story has to exploit your primal fear at its most basic level. Not just ghost stories like the kind that scare you but don’t necessarily horrify you. Horror is visceral– biological/conscious jump-up and run away before you die fear. Supernatural is cerebral– the more subtle psychological/subconscious keep-you-up-at-night or have nightmares fear.

Beyond film genres and the depiction of the Warrens and their paranormal adventures, its also worth mentioning their real-life background. Why? Because they are yet having an influence on the minds of a far younger generation on a hot weekend in 2016.

Ed Warren (who died a few years ago) was a self-proclaimed demonologist. His wife Lorraine is a medium and joined her husband in the early 50’s as investigators of the paranormal. They were trailblazers, among if not the first to use tape recorders and other electronics of the day to scientifically measure such phenomena. Unfortunately, they had a built-in bias. They were devout Christians, and believed that all paranormal events were the result of diabolical forces.

I don’t have to criticize a major religion for its paranormal beliefs, as its a fact that in the Catholic Church for example, that belief is dogma. The priests in the Exorcist were of course Catholic, and admirably performed their duties in casting out the devil from its possession of a young girl (based on a true story). Where the Catholic Church goes awry in my opinion is its continuing insistence that ordinary ghosts are also the result of diabolical causes. They are not in most cases, which I can attest to from my own experience and most of those of my cohorts with only some rare exceptions.

I understand this misguided doctrine. I grew up Catholic, but left its confines many years ago due to other differences with its belief structure.  But let’s get back to the movies about the Warrens . . . both foster the belief that Satan is behind hauntings, and that is just not the case. That belief makes for more dramatic stories and can appeal to one’s inner religious child, but scaring grown adults into a given belief is exactly why I left that institution.

What we call “ghosts” today are the manifestations of dead people living their perfectly normal afterlives. They include those existing along either margin of the border to the Other Side as ghosts (earthbound spirits), or freed spirits who’ve successfully crossed over and are just visiting. Whoever else is lurking along the interdimensional boundary between life and death I’m not sure, but I’m fairly certain that they rarely include demons. Somewhere they may indeed exist to lead us into temptation and drag us screaming into hell, but they’re unlikely tenants of the average haunted house.

(Read another opinion on the story’s credibility)

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

 

 

 

Unreal Ghosts

1 Jun

Wi Haunted HseRecently, we were called to investigate a home where the owner claimed to have ghosts in her basement. Since the house was nearby, we came over to do a preliminary walkthrough prior to any investigation. There the owner told us how she felt very uncomfortable in the basement, even feeling like she couldn’t breathe. Her dog was also unwilling to go down there.

After walking through and visiting the basement, we too felt bad. But it wasn’t until she told us about her previous tenant who had a meth lab down there did we deduce the source of our mutual discomfort. Meth processing leaves a chemical residue that is a toxic contaminant, and under Colorado law must in fact be disclosed to any buyer or tenant. We advised her that she probably did not have ghosts– just meth.

Today I read in the Denver Post about a couple who was arrested for shooting at “ghosts” in their house. Turns out they were under the same influence whenever they reported the alleged intruders to the local authorities.

Goes to show you: if you’re a ghosthunter, beware of contaminants (meth, mold, asbestos, mice droppings, etc.). All hauntings are not real ghosts.

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
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All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

 

 

Interview: Paul Hill & Author Ellis Nelson

1 May
Ellis Nelson

Ellis Nelson

Recently I interviewed Ellis Nelson. Her last two published works are Elephants Never Forgotten in 2015 and Into the Land of Snows back in 2012. Let’s see what she has to say about her work . . .

PH: Ellis, you write fiction for Young Adults; more specifically in the mystical, paranormal, or possibly “visionary” genres. Visionary is a relatively new category of writing that you self-identify with, but I believe most readers are not yet familiar with it. Do your last two books fit under that label, and if so, can you tell me your definition of visionary?

EN: Into the Land of Snows definitely fits in the visionary fiction (VF) category. My main character grows in his understanding of consciousness and reality. That is the central theme of the book. Ultimately, his preconceived ideas about reality crumble and his world vision opens to new possibility. I think the definition of visionary fiction is emerging but for me, any book that tackles going beyond the limitations of the third dimensional reality fits the bill. That said, I think pegging books solely to this or that category can get sticky. Many books are combinations of genres and I still agonize over how to present or label a book for editors and agents.

Elephants Never Forgotten lends itself easily to the world of science fiction because its main theme involves the manipulation of genes, a scientific endeavor. But even here, it could just as easily be tagged adventure. My main character travels to a Botswana of the future. I wouldn’t label this book as VF; however it does look at the animal/human bond and heart-centered connection. For me, this is a spiritual book on a certain level and does represent part of my own spiritual journey.

PH: I’m fascinated by the fact that you can write these kinds of stories for young adults. Is there any downside to those folks being exposed to such subjects at an early age? On the upside, what’s the benefit for them?

EN: From my point of view, the earlier the better. But then, I came into the world as an open, inquisitive kid, very intrigued by the spiritual, paranormal, and the desire to understand the nature of reality. The benefit is that we grow a society of bright, open-minded, heart-centered individuals. The ultimate revolution in consciousness! This is the reason I write for kids. They are the future. The downside is that we already have plenty of kids who feel like outsiders because they are different. We’ve seen bullying since time immemorial. We live in a society that is highly judgmental and materialistic. I do recognize that those who don’t fit in run risks.

PH: Good point about creative kids not getting respect from their less thoughtful peers. On your website, you say that you were interested in Buddhism, and that you were also interested in mystical things when you were that young. But as an adult you were in the a military. At first glance that would seem to be a little at odds with things mystical. How do you reconcile that?

EN: I think they are at odds. I grew up in a working class family and did well in school. An Air Force ROTC scholarship put me through college. Although I had a deep interest in history, psychology, and religious studies, the AF would not pay for those kinds of degrees. I have an undergraduate degree in math and an advanced degree in management. I served four years as an acquisitions officer and left the AF. The way I go about any task really goes back to those values and methods. My husband is a retired Lt. Col. and we’ve lived throughout the country. I still retain the core values and ideas of leadership. However, my spiritual life has taken me in new directions.

PH: Have you ever had your own paranormal or mystical experience?

EN: Yes, many. I’ll talk about a few. On my books blog, I mention that as a toddler I repeatedly told my mother about a man who visited me at night who wore a hat with a big feather. I don’t have any conscious memory of that. But I regard that as my first encounter with the paranormal. As a teen, I watched books fall from shelves and heard footsteps when no one was at home. As an adult, I saw a ghost at Bent’s Fort.

But some of my most amazing experiences have been with my own pets. These are the experiences that convince me we are connected in very incredible ways. I am very empathic, but it took me a while to admit this.

The first instance happened when I took one of my older cats in for a regular vet exam. Now, I had had a tooth hurt from time to time prior to this and I decided to wait and see if it got worse over time. At the vet, it turned out that my cat had dental issues and the vet wanted to schedule a cleaning letting me know that extractions might be necessary. I scheduled the procedure and over the next two weeks, my back molar was really starting to give me problems. Now it was actually throbbing and I thought, for sure, I’ve got to get to the dentist. Turns out, the cat had three teeth removed. “The worst one,” the vet said poking a finger toward an xray, “was this one.” It corresponded to my troublesome molar. My tooth never hurt after my cat had the tooth pulled. A curious coincidence?

A couple of years later, I had a Golden retriever who was going through chemotherapy. I’d drop him off in the morning for treatment and the office would call in the afternoon for me to come and pick him up. They’d fit the treatments in between appointments so I never knew how long he’d be there or when he’d get the meds. The second time I took him, I was at home and suddenly got very nauseated and so dizzy I had to go lie down. I’d never had that happen before and had no idea what was going on. I was really concerned that if things didn’t resolve quickly, there was no way I could drive to the vet’s and get the dog. It took about an hour or so for the situation to abate and I was able to drive to the vet’s later that afternoon. I dismissed the incident because I had no explanation for it.

The next week, the same thing happened and I noted the time. I’m a slow learner, but when I went to retrieve the dog, I had a question for the vet tech. “What time did Barkley start getting the drugs?” The time was exactly when I started to feel sick. I was experiencing the chemo right along with my dog. Later that night, I did a meditation and entered a space to talk with my guides. That was the end of my chemo. I did learn some important lessons about healing and the reality we live in.

PH: There really are no coincidences, are there? Let’s talk about the storylines of your latest books for a bit. Briefly, what are they about, and is one more mystical/paranormal or visionary than the other?

elephants never forgotten 2

 

EN: In Elephants Never Forgotten, we are taken into the future where microelephants are pets and wild elephants are extinct. Twelve-year-old Nigella receives a shipment from her deceased grandfather. Her inheritance is a herd of micro-elephants. But her elephants are different. She starts to wonder what her grandfather was up to. With the help of her best friend, Kepler, the girls set off on an adventure to discover the truth. This is a futuristic, SF novel for the younger set.

 

 

IntotheLandofSnows_432
In Into the Land of Snows, we follow sixteen year old Blake to Base Camp on
Mt. Everest to spend time with his physician father. When a deadly avalanche occurs, Dad is forced to rethink things and sends Blake away. Now accompanied by a Sherpa guide, and in possession of a mysterious camera, Blake undertakes a journey that will challenge everything he believes. In the magical Himalayas, he will be forever changed by what he experiences. This is the visionary novel where Blake’s reality is shattered and he is opened to a whole new paradigm.

 

 

PH: Both stories sound compelling. But as you well know, one of the big issues in getting published these days is getting one’s work to conform to a known genre. Sometimes it’s like fitting the proverbial square peg. When you published these books, did your publishers insist on what genre and sub-genre they should be grouped into?

EN: No. In both cases the publishers asked me for tags. In my experience with children’s books, the main classification is first deciding if the work is for a middlegrade (MG) audience or a young adult (YA) one. After that, a book can be associated with further descriptions as adventure, fantasy, SF, magical realism, contemporary, etc.

PH: I haven’t read your books, but if you asked me which of your last two fit into what categories, I might say Elephants could be “visionary/science fiction,” almost like a Jurassic Park for the younger set? Do you agree?

EN: Yes, I see your point. For promotional purposes, I was using “Jurassic Park meets Micro”. I love Michael Crichton, by the way! The genre VF is very new and most publishers, agents, and editors don’t recognize it. So at this point trying to attract any of them using VF isn’t going to work. We’re still left with paranormal, New Age, spiritual, etc. I have a manuscript right now I’m circulating and it’s VF, but I’m calling it adventure. It reads like a thriller, but it has strong mystical elements.

PH: What about a genre/sub-genre for Snows?

EN: The genre for Snows is YA. It’s a teen book with potential cross-over. Its subgenre, in a perfect world, would be VF. However, the tags associated with the book are adventure and contemporary.

PH: I read your excerpt from Elephants, and I noted that you don’t “talk down” to your young adult readers. It seems it could be enjoyed by an adult just as well. Did you intentionally write it to cross-over into the adult fiction market, or did it just come out that way?

EN: It was not a conscious intention to write a cross-over. My books do involve copious research and, I think, a level of sophistication. All of my books have an underlying objective to teach something. Those are the kinds of books I devour so those are the kinds of books I write. The part of your question dealing with not talking down to young readers is also critical. I don’t believe that children come in as blank slates. I’m a parent too. Children come into this world as spiritual beings with personalities and experience. That has to be appreciated and honored.

PH: You mentioned you have a manuscript in circulation right now. Can you give us a hint about it?

EN: I’m shopping for an agent right now for a YA book titled, The Greening of the Laurel. In it, Ryan’s junior year is turned upside down by a series of bizarre visions and freaky encounters with fire. As his reality crumbles, he must confront his past life in Cathar France in order to regain a lost manuscript that is key to guiding scientists in unlocking the secrets of the universe. Only then will Ryan be free.

PH: Sounds fascinating. So where do you think this is all headed? By that I mean both adult and YA literature about the visionary, the mystical, the paranormal, ghosts, etc.? Is it just a fad, or do you think we’ll see these genres evolve and gain in popularity?

EN: Cultures have always told stories about these things. Although the term VF is new, the stories are not. They fill a need. The need is to go beyond everyday reality, to search for truth and meaning. These things are not going away. Today, we see the mystic and quantum scientist joining hands using different words, but pointing in the same direction. The old paradigm is dying. It’s scary for some. Some will hold on tooth and claw, but we’re going there anyway. The future will be different and so will our worldview. VF is a way to make sense of that new future. I’m optimistic that we’re heading in the right direction.

PH: Thanks for being in the hotseat with me today, Ellis! One last question: where might a reader buy your books? Are they in e-book form, or is hard copy available?

EN: Elephants Never Forgotten is available as an e-book.  Into the Land of Snows  is available in both print and e-book forms (click on titles for links).

Thanks for hosting me, Paul!

I invite readers to visit me at www.ellisnelson.com (mystical/spiritual/paranormal site), or https://ellisnelsonbooks.wordpress.com/ (kid friendly site).

PH: It was enlightening talking with you Ellis, and best of luck with your book sales and your latest work!

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

Seeing Ghosts

26 Apr

There are two kinds of ghosts: real ones and the made-up kind. The latter are either the phony ones you see at Halloween, or the ones you see (or can’t see) on tv and at the movies– dramatic re-creations based on a screenwriter’s script or a popular novel.  But how accurate are their depictions of the unseen? People learn from television, for better or for worse.

"Red Reddington"

“Red Reddington”

Consider the most recent episode of Blacklist, an NBC television series about the FBI, spies, master criminals, and a main character by the name of Raymond “Red” Reddington (played by James Spader). Red is a rogue ex-spy who unofficially consults with the FBI about uber-bad guys on the loose. My wife and I don’t watch that much tv, but this is one series we have followed for its excellent writing, in this case by Daniel Knauf.

Last week’s episode (Cape May) threw dedicated fans into a tizzy, showing how a ghost as a character can be misunderstood. Apparently no one understood this one. I think I did. The episode presented a paranormal experience for the main character, something totally out of character for the series. But you can decide for yourself if any ghosts appeared. I suggest watching the episode for important subtleties and clues that appear as the story unfolds. If you can’t, stay with me anyway. This should be fun.

SPOILER ALERT!  Don’t read any further if you intend to see the show first. That will be far more interesting then a written description. But if you haven’t been watching it from week to week, you still should know some background: Red’s friend in the FBI (Liz) died in the previous show, someone he had been looking after since she was a little girl when he rescued her from dangerous circumstances. The identity of her presumed dead father is unknown, as is the status of her mother, an accused Russian spy.

That’s really all you need to know, but watch the whole thing if possible. Then come back here and we’ll talk . . .


 DISCLAIMER: to over-simplify, paranormal investigators look for clues and evidence of something unusual in an allegedly “haunted” location. Then they try to “debunk” whatever strange things are discovered in order to explain them by normal circumstances. If they can’t and the phenomenon remains unexplained, it may very well be paranormal. Investigating the paranormal requires the same sensibilities as any kind of investigator, but the process is still very much an art and not a science, despite fancy hardware and claims to the contrary. In spite of confidence in their findings, they can still be dead wrong.



The opening scenes of the Cape May episode show Red Reddington still traumatized by Liz’s death and recovering in an opium parlor run by an old Chinese woman. As he leaves, she reminds him to take his gun, but he gives it back to her.  1st clue: guns don’t work in past-life environments. He then hires a car to take him to Cape May, New Jersey– 200 miles away. We don’t know why, or if he knows why. 2nd clue: Red is mysteriously drawn to this location, which he did visit once a long time ago.

Once he arrives, he visits a diner for breakfast where he spies a woman sitting in a nearby booth. He watches her get up and leave, only to see a man enter who is apparently looking for her. 3rd clue: the man picks up a shiny new pay phone and inserts a quarter to call someone. Where’s his cell phone?  Why is a pay phone even there? They’ve virtually disappeared from public places.

I can go on and on with the various clues, but it would be more fun for the viewers to find them on their own. Suffice it to say that Red was experiencing a residual haunting in the diner, which continues right through his arrival at an abandoned shoreside inn. There he sees the same woman on the beach, whom he watches trying to kill herself by walking into the ocean. He saves her, transforming the residual haunting into an interactive one as he talks to the person he saves.

Residual hauntings are like playbacks of events that occurred in the past, where the witness cannot interact with whom or what he sees. The twist the writer inserted into the story at this point was his ability to start interacting with the woman. Red had stepped back into the past, enabling himself to be part of it as it replayed its sad story. Such interactive encounters are also called intelligent hauntings.

Mysterious Woman

Mysterious Woman

The storyline continues with many additional clues that support the theory of this residual haunting flipping back and forth into an interactive one. Red is caught up in the playback of the events that were responsible for all of his troubles, including the recent death of his beloved Liz. The challenging question one can raise here is, “if Red participated in the events of the past, did he also change the future by his actions there?” This is the classic time travel dilemma, but I’ll leave the implications of that to the writer who probably has his own ideas about it.

I could go on for pages pointing out all the clues within the narrative. But I’ll leap to my own conclusions instead. Scanning through the hundreds of comments on various Blacklist fan sites, it appears no one “got it.” Instead, viewers thought Red was having a dream, hallucinations, having a breakdown, or was simply remembering past events. No. Hallucinations are irrational perceptions produced by a short-circuiting brain as the result of drugs or psychosis. Memories recalled can be vivid, but do not play out in interactive detail. Dreams, whether induced by opiates or just deep sleep, are controlled by the sub-conscious, and are for the most part illogical. Red’s experience as a still rational person was vivid, logical, and interactive.

bracelet

Red’s Discovery of the Mysterious Bracelet

The mysterious woman was depicted as a ghost who really did kill herself in the past. She drew Red back to Cape May to explain her actions when she was alive, and also to help Red deal with his own guilt, which was slowly killing him. Such is the nature of paranormal events . . . supernatural interventions with a purpose.

Comments?

For those of you really into this, learn more . . .

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

 

 

 

a Queen’s birthday– a Prince’s passing

22 Apr
the Queen

Queen Elizabeth

Yesterday, the world’s media was focused on two dissimilar events: the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth of Britain, and the unexpected passing of Prince, the performance artist and musician. My wife thought of the above headline ironically describing the two unrelated events happening on the same day.

Most of you know who “the Queen” is; some of you may not acquainted with Prince, a pop/rock artist who’s been on the music scene and in the public spotlight since the early 1980’s. Since his death, he is finally being acknowledged as one of the most innovative and creative influences in the world of popular music. This event reinforces the notion that artists get their best reviews after they’re dead.

Of course music is a very personal thing, and for what one jumps out of bed for in the morning, another sleeps till noon. But that’s art, whether its in the form of music, painting, writing, or any other creative endeavor. So why do I continue to deviate from my self appointed mission as a blogger of the paranormal with posts about writing and music? I guess because the latter are as important to me personally as investigating and writing about ghosts. More pragmatically, other than my real estate blog this is the only forum I have to rant in! So I’ll try and keep these things as connected as I can.

As anyone who’s been following me is probably sick of hearing by now, I wrote a book. Its a work of paranormal fiction, so there’s the connection to the literary world. But how do I justify music? Here’s how: my last post discussed visionary fiction, and how it has a hard time pinpointing a specific genre that publishers need when they select a hole for their literary pigeons. “Visionary” in writing and art in general is hard to define.

Prince

Prince (click for video)

But after listening to a news interview on CBSN last night, I had one of those little epiphanies. A reporter was talking to a music critic in front of the Apollo Theater in NYC about Prince’s contribution to contemporary pop music. She said Prince was a visionary, combining funk, jazz, rock n roll, gospel, and other music genres as easily as we chew gum. She concluded that visionaries defy genre (her words).

There’s my answer to the visionary aspect of the written word in fiction writing. The reason book publishers have such a hard time pigeonholing that genre is because with books (and music), visionary has no genres. It defies them.

I promise I’ll get back to ghosts soon.

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

the Visionary Fiction Alliance

14 Apr

VFA-member bannerWhat is the Visionary Fiction Alliance (VFA)? I guess I should know as I just joined it! As the new kid on the block, so far I can tell you its an organization of authors, readers, editors, publishers, artists and others who specialize in a certain new genre of fiction.

Visionary fiction is the kind of story that shows how the protagonist changes for the better through expected plot development and conflict. That can be said about any good novel. The distinction is that in visionary stories the main character is not only transforming into someone better, but transforming in the context of a universal good. This happens through an extraordinary mental, spiritual, or paranormal ability or experience.

Visionary fiction is also referred to as transformational.  Think of classic stories like Siddhartha by Herman Hesse, The Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman, Life of Pi by Yann Martel, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma, or The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis.  All are great classics and best-sellers.

But don’t be intimidated. Nobodies like me are writing visionary fiction. My finally-finished novel Lanes End is hopefully part of that genre. I didn’t realize it until I recently stumbled across the VFA and thought “hey, my book fits their definition” (see why I think Lanes End does).

But enough shameless self-promotion! Check the VFA out for yourself (click on the logo). You’ll find a better definition of visionary fiction than mine, plus some very interesting posts, reviews, books, etc. You may even want to join . . .

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

Publish or Perish? (Part 1)

5 Apr

In case you’re wondering why all this stuff about books, and what happened to the ghosts? . . . fair question. Since I just finished my first paranormal fiction novel, I’m a bit preoccupied with it. So unless you’re into reading such books and the perils of publishing one, feel free to skip this post. You won’t hurt my feelings!

Its for those of you who are book readers, if not authors yourselves. People into the paranormal like to read and write about the subject, and there’s the tie-in. Everybody has an experience or an opinion. I’m my case, I decided to couch my own theory of why and how ghosts exist into a story. Its always easier to inform with a story rather than a lecture; the hard part is writing the story.

Besides “self-publishing” and endlessly querying literary agents and publishers to take a look at my work, I also plan to create e-commerce webpages for authors, agents, publishers, and anybody else involved in the process of publishing. It would be a single platform for all of us types. But before I bore you with the details, a little background on why I’m doing this business model as I am . . .

If you’ve ever waded into these waters as a writer, you already know how daunting and frustrating the process of finding a publisher can be. I’ve found that there is in fact lots of antipathy from authors directed toward traditional publishers, and submissions to them are actually down.

That’s why self-publishing has become so popular, like posting your latest work for sale to Amazon. The good news is that anybody with a word processer can “publish” their book to sites like Amazon and its cousins. The bad news is that anybody can publish regardless of the quality. Amazon and other websites like them do not vet or edit one’s work in any way, and readers must take their chances, usually for a very low e-book price. They can only rely on word-of-mouth, shameless self-promotion on Twitter and Facebook, and online reviews from readers.

Can a writer do both, i.e. self-publish in those kind of venues and also seek a real publisher? The short answer is yes, but the longer answer has some qualifications to it. Those are beyond the scope of this post, and I’m already writing too much, which is my tendency. So to make this easier to swallow, I’m breaking the post up into two parts. This is the first, and thanks for getting this far. I’ll post Part 2 as soon as I write it . . .

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

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Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

 

 

the Treasure in Mr. Libner’s Dark Basement

16 Mar

Who is Mr. Libner, and why should you care about his basement? Got you going, didn’t I? Actually, my mysterious character is the name of my old high school principal (rip), and I’ve never been in his basement. But what I’m trying to demonstrate here is the principal of “discoverability.” When you think about going down into his dark confines and finding a treasure, you’re probably curious . . . stimulated, even.

Its what gets us paranormal investigators juiced. Hunting for and maybe finding something from the Great Unknown. But this post isn’t about investigating; its about writing. Many of the followers of this blog are not only investigators, paranormal researchers, or interested readers; they write about this stuff in their own blogs or in their own books, fiction or non. I have just completed all 282 pages of my first novel Lanes End, and am firmly in the grips of hoping its “discovered” by the right people. Not just readers at this point, but also publishers and literary agents.

Unfortunately, what I’ve learned to date is not encouraging. Perhaps cynically, I believe that having a well-written and entertaining novel (as I hope mine is) is not enough. If potential agents and publishers don’t notice, it won’t be seen by readers unless the writer “self-publishes.” That’s the big thing in writing now, the results of which one can see on Amazon/Kindle, Smashwords, and a host of other websites offering authors’s otherwise unpublished ebooks for very low prices.

So not getting attention from publishers and agents who deal with hundreds of submissions emailed to their desks each day is only part of the problem. Now that the glory days of self-publishing have peaked and everyone has dozens of unread ebooks backlogged in their Kindles, the same problem of being noticed among the thousands of self-published books is now upon us.

Anybody can self-publish a book, and huge numbers of anybodys are doing just that.

Back to the principal of discoverability . . . If readers fail to discover a book, they will never have the opportunity to read it. But the ability to be discovered is hampered by the sheer numbers of everyone else seeking the same attention. We as authors need to be discovered by our readers before anything else happens. Someone, somehow has to create an atmosphere of mystery and curiosity in order to have readers want to search us out, just like in Mr. Libner’s basement. Amazon, Smashwords and their cousins don’t do that. They simply pile-on the latest offerings over yesterday’s offerings while thousands buried underneath remain unnoticed.

If you’re a writer (or a reader), do you agree? Are you satisfied with the attention your offerings are getting? Do you have any ideas? Maybe we can put our heads together and figure this out. How do a bunch of writers about spooky things get our work discovered?

Please comment. Mr. Libner has lots of hiding places.

 

Copyright 2016, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com
Visit our website: http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

 

 

 

The Solstice and the Sun Dagger

21 Dec
Fajada_Butte - Trimalchio, CC

Fajada Butte

December 21, 2015 –the Winter Solstice, coinciding with the first day of Winter and the shortest day of the year, but celebrated by ancient peoples as the beginning of the time where the days grow longer. More sunlight day by day until the warm seasons, when finally at the Summer Solstice, the day is the longest and the cycle begins again.

Of the Anasazi peoples of the precolumbian American Southwest, the inhabitants of Chaco Canyon in what is now northwestern New Mexico were among the most advanced. They studied the stars and complex astronomical relationships, knowing that the Winter Solstice marked an important turning point in their survival. Many centuries before digital clocks and calendars, they knew that the time to plant was not far away. It was a time of sacred celebration.

Sun Dagger -- Fajada Butte - Chaco Canyon

the Sun Dagger

On Fajada Butte, they constructed what is now called the Sun Dagger, a solar and lunar rock calendar that allowed the sun and moon to shine through carefully positioned stone slabs onto a wall. The filtered light was in the shape of a dagger, illuminating parts of a spiral carving in the wall corresponding to the precise dates and times of the Solstices and other seasonal events.

From Native American Antiquity . . .

” . . . then for the winter solstice, two large daggers embrace the sides of the larger spiral like bookends.  Even more remarkable, it was observed that the 19 segments of the larger spiral marked the 19 year movement of the moon from
minimum to maximum across the horizon.”
Fajada Butte -- sun dagger diagram

Sun Dagger at Winter Solstice- bottom image

 

Celebrate the Winter Solstice not just as the first day of Winter, but a day of resurrection and renewal.


Paul Hill writes of the ancient Chacoans in his new book of paranormal fiction,
Lanes End. Find out what role he has them play in a modern day drama of rebirth . . . (also watch the video trailer).


 

Copyright 2015, Paul Hill
All Rights Reserved

For ALL Light in the Dark Paranormal postings
(most recent at top), visit our home blog:

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Visit our website:  http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com

 All posts on this blog are written and owned by Paul Hill.

Haunted Properties: Valuable Real Estate or Tough Sells?

27 Oct

It depends. Selling a haunted property can be easy or very difficult. First, the seller has to feel comfortable in disclosing to prospective buyers that they have residents who go bump in the night. Many are not, fearful of devaluing their property. That’s a legitimate concern. But certain kinds of real estate, like Bed & Breakfasts, often find that a ghost or two is actually good for business.

Second, a distinction has to be made between “stigmatized” and “haunted” buildings. Stigmatized buildings have a bad reputation that most people know about, and is usually the result of a murder or some other heinous crime committed there. But that does not mean the place is haunted, unless the victim is still hanging around as a ghostly tenant.

The following are not stigmatized properties, but are some of the allegedly haunted properties that are currently for sale in Colorado . . .

 

LoganCtyHospThe old Logan County Hospital–Sterling, Colorado. 

I currently have this piece of Sterling history listed for sale for only $80,000! For more information about the real estate, click here. To find out about its supernatural past, click here  (if you dare).


The Bross Hotel–Paonia, Colorado

Back when the Light in the Dark Paranormal team was just myself and my wife Adrian, we investigated this fine old B&B. Located in the Western Slope
 BrossHotelmountain town of Paonia, it is available for $689,000, including the building and the business. Mother Bross supposedly still tucks in her guests at night. Trouble is, she died quite some time ago.

Watch Part 1 of the video we produced on the investigation below.
For Part 2, click here.



 

The Tarabino Inn- Trinidad, Coloardo

tarabinoinnThis wonderful building is for sale for $675,000, and includes both the real estate and the bed & breakfast operation. Its a thriving business frequented by many out of state tourists and business travelers. It is also alleged to have a ghost or two. Click here for some scary background.

Contact Us above for more information if you are interested in buying. I am a real estate broker who specializes in haunted property!


A Story of a Stigmatized Home

Most everyone knows the story of OJ Simpson. Years ago in California, he was accused, arrested, and tried for the murder of his ex-wife Nicole and her friend Ronald Goldman. Found not guilty, nicolecondohe was set free only to be found guilty for a different crime a few years later.

This case and the stigmatization of the home where the murder occurred illustrate some important points about such places. The condo was eventually sold far under market value, which is typically the case with stigmas resulting from homicides and other terrible crimes. But the more interesting question is this: is it haunted? I am unaware of any paranormal investigations having been done there. Haunted or not, one might think that any future buyer might want to know about the unsolved murder just in case Nicole’s ghost was still hanging around. What if that buyer was stuck in an elevator in Siberia for the last twenty years, and didn’t know O.J. Simpson from Santa Claus?

Under Colorado real estate law, a seller or his or her broker is not required to disclose a murder or suicide to a prospective buyer without the seller’s consent. If the seller does not provide it, then the buyer is left to find out on her own, even though the broker may know every detail. The broker is under a gag order!

But California is different. In that state, details that you do not need to disclose include whether a prior occupant had Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), or whether someone died on the property as long as the death occurred more than three years before the current potential buyer’s purchase offer. If however, a potential buyer asks you a question about any deaths on your property, you must still truthfully answer even if the answer involves an occurrence more than three years in the past. (See, California Civil Code Sect. 1710.2.)

If someone wanted to buy Nicole’s former condo today,  its “don’t ask/don’t tell”, since the murder of OJ’s ex-wife and her friend happened more than three years ago. But if a buyer asked if anyone died on the property, the broker would be compelled to say something like, “Oh, now that you mention it, yeah. Some guy named OJ allegedly killed his wife here a while back.” Honest disclosure. If the buyer happened to believe in earthbound spirits who still hang around trying to remedy an injustice, he may conclude that poor Nicole may want someone to know who really killed her, whether it was OJ or someone else. The buyer might be grateful for the disclosure of not only a homicide, but a potential haunting.

Over one third of Americans believe in ghosts and hauntings (source: Gallup polls). Whether you believe in these things or not, enough average citizens do, and courts across the country discuss the phenomena as if it was real.


MY PROFESSIONAL ADVICE TO BUYERS: ALWAYS ASK THE SELLER IF ANYONE HAD DIED IN THE HOUSE . . .


The seller’s broker may not know, or be prohibited from telling you even if he did (as in Colorado). So ask the seller directly. You still may not get a truthful answer, but even if the seller revealed that someone did, the place may be just fine if it was a natural death. The home hospice movement facilitates the passing of people in their own homes, and this will be even more commonplace in the future. But if the answer is “yes,” your follow-up question should be a little more pointed. Ask if the death was from a murder or suicide. Depending on your state, the next answer (or lack of one) could determine your future peace-of-mind in that house.

BTW: in case you haven’t noticed, Halloween is right around the corner. Visit my annually recurring post on the subject, where you’ll learn more about how ghosts affect real estate sales long after the trick or treating is over.


How might a ghost help sell a haunted house?
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Paul Hill is the co-founder of Light in the Dark Paranormal,
and he has a brand new ebook: 
LANES END
A Journey Into the Paranormal 

Its now available! Read excerpts from the book

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Every love story is a ghost story*

22 Oct

I’ve been a follower of Laurie Anderson for a long time, and I just came across this trailer of her latest work, a film called Heart of a DogHaving seen the trailer, I know I now have to see the movie.

What does this film have to do with the paranormal? Everything.

PH

*a David Foster Wallace quote in the film, and another short video

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