Paranormal Experts

by admin on August 10, 2010

paranormal experts

paranormal experts

This extract is part of an online interview which was undertaken with members of the Writers Retreat at the Institute of Children’s Literature in September 2008. For more than thirty five years, the Institute has offered the premier writing course for adults interested in learning how to write and be published for children and teens.

Q: I know many writers have a lot of trouble understanding some of the different categories of fantasy. Can you help sort that out? For example, what do people mean by ‘classic fantasy’ and is there anything coming out today that you could consider ‘classic?’ Also, what are some fantasy categories we’re seeing now? I know paranormal and urban fantasy, how would you say those two differ? We hear so many terms and it’s a little confusing for the newcomer to understand the real scope of the genre. And do you have examples to give of what would fit in these categories?

A: I find it somewhat confusing myself, especially when we are told that we can’t mix genres. What about romance and historical fiction? Or romance and horror? Or horror and fantasy? Or of course science fiction and fantasy? It’s often tough to tell where the line is drawn or determine if the line needs to be drawn at all. Two of my books involve time travel by means of a magical box or an enchanted amulet, but also feature journeys to 1483 and 1349, so are they fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, pure adventure or all of these? Classic fantasy I have always seen as involving an imaginary kingdom or landscape, akin to the worlds of Tolkien or Narnia, with mythological creatures, fairies, elves, dwarves, swords, sorcery, quests, wizards and so on, in a medieval type setting.

Science fiction generally, and this is very general, is often about science and technology, alien planets, spaceships etc rather than the supernatural or magic, yet time travel can be both SF and fantasy, as far as I can see. I have never received a satisfactory answer whenever I have asked ‘experts’, but I have come to consider time travel as fantasy if it involves magic, but science fiction if it involves a device, which could be mechanical, such as a vehicle, a bracelet or other piece of jewelry, or a method, which could even be something that is ingested. I am not a fan of strict pigeonholes. A book might be classed as fantasy if there is travel into another dimension, but if the novel also features a bizarre comic book universe, there are elements of another genre there too, plus the machinery employed by the chief villain and the experiments he engages could clearly be scientific in nature. Urban fantasy is a sub-genre of contemporary fantasy, with magical stories and traditional fantasy characters and races set in modern day, real world settings.

Paranormal I would normally consider to be about the spirit world, psychic powers, telepathy and so on, but stories classed as paranormal today often include themes from what has up to now been seen as traditional fantasy, science fiction, or horror, including vampires, demons, werewolves, witches, shape-shifters, ghosts, characters with psychic abilities, like telekinesis or telepathy, or even time travel. Paranormal romance is apparently one of the fastest growing trends in the romance genre.It may all sound very confusing, but bear in mind this is how bookstores, the publishing industry and anyone other than the writers creating the stories from the depths of their wonderful imaginations, attempt to categorize things. Write what you want to write and what you are passionate about and don’t worry which pigeon hole it fits into or what might be popular at the moment.

Simon Rose is the author of science fiction and fantasy novels for children, including The Alchemist’s Portrait, The Sorcerer’s Letterbox, The Clone Conspiracy, The Emerald Curse and The Heretic’s Tomb. He offers a wide variety of workshops, presentations and Author in Residence programs for schools and libraries around the world, covering such topics as where ideas come from, story structure, editing and revision, character development, time travel stories, history and research and more. He is also available for presentations, workshops and public speaking engagements with a wide range of adult audiences, offers creative services designed for writers, including editing, critiquing and manuscript evaluation and also freelance writing services, including website content and copywriting, for the business community. Details of school and library programs, plus online readings, excerpts from his books, reviews, and reader, student and teacher comments may be found at You may also visit his blog at

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Desensitized to the paranormal?

So, I remember long ago when younger I really tried to believe in ghost and hauntings.

started hanging out in many supposedly haunted places like an old theatre, house, park, cemetery, buildings, and other sites, and nothing, nada, every site and sound I was able to prove was anything but the supernatural. True story: at the theatre as a joke the workers there sent me to an area absolutely no one else would go by themselves to retrieve an item, they all expected me to come out screaming and were shocked that I was not even fazed, nothing happened no big deal.

I have worked in the entertainment industry for 15 years now and have learned from others on how to create the unbelievable.

So, I see these ghost hunters, and paranormal experts claiming these things are all real, could it just be that they want to believe so they see and hear what is really not there????? or did I just become so desensitized I would not believe a ghost if sat down and talked to me????

“could it just be that they want to believe so they see and hear what is really not there?????”

Yes, that is exactly what it is, 100%! You are correct. It is in the best interests of these people to continue with this charade. That is how they make their money! By telling people things like this are real and using the tricks that you have said yourself you know about and could do.

Nothing fazed you because you are a rational, free thinking open minded person not blinded by the incessant need to feel special by making things up for personal or financial gain.

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