Sunday, May 26, 2013

Inspiration, part I

Where do writers find inspiration? From anywhere really. I recently went to see Ghost Whisperer James Van Praagh in Poughkeepsie. I write paranormal and love to immerse myself in all things otherworldly whenever I can. The evening was a nice one and I enjoyed it. There were some things I learned, some things I felt skeptical about, and a few ignited a flame inside my mind. Instant inspiration. One word set off ideas and lines of dialogue which begged to be added to my latest YA paranormal novel. I smiled to myself, always happy when ideas are born.

Mr. Van Praagh was very entertaining. I was surprised by how funny he was and the wealth of information he shared with us about the history of the area and about his upbringing and past experiences. He was an adviser on the television show, Ghost Whisperer, and has written many books. He opened with a lengthy speech before commencing into readings. There was also a segment when he showed the audience how to meditate and stressed the importance of learning how to open ourselves up correctly. He did some cold readings, readings from pictures given from members of the audience, and answered questions. Afterwards, for those who paid extra, there was a meet and greet where the above photo was taken. The meet was brief and Mr. Van Praagh was charming.

There was a nice mix of people in attendance, male and female, of varying ages. My friends and I sat in front of a group of verbal non-believers. I wondered why people who didn't care for an evening with a medium spent fifty dollars on a ticket just to sit and grumble. Despite the minor annoyance, the evening was enjoyable and memorable. 

Another psychic and medium I had the opportunity to see in person was Chip Coffey. The event was billed as An Evening with Chip Coffey, which was a gallery reading and after the show he participated in a Ghost Hunt with local ghost hunters. The venue was the Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center in Poughkeepsie, on the coldest night in January. A day after a storm covered Dutchess County in ice and snow, my friend and I ventured out to sit and watch Mr. Coffey in action. I already knew about him from watching the A&E series Paranormal State and Psychic Kids, and looked forward to seeing and hearing him in person.

On stage in a historical small theater which helped set the perfect mood, Mr. Coffey was humorous, down to earth, and came across as so real. He told us about some things which had happened at some of his tour stops and then proceeded to spend a lot of time reading from the audience. I will readily admit, I was impressed. 

There were two families who had members who'd passed on make their presence known. If one was a skeptic, after this, I don't think they remained that way. There was also a young man in the audience, who had a 'secret' revealed many gasped at. This revelation and the guy's admittance that Mr. Coffey's findings were true was chilling. 

That night was unforgettable and also inspiring. The feelings, the emotions, the events, are all things I will always remember. I also left a true believer.

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