Why is the paranormal so fascinating when we know it’s not true? Clearly and scientifically it can’t be true, and yet, our lives remain middle of the road dull without a toe-dabble into its imaginative waters.
But that ghastly genre word ‘paranormal’ is so misleading. It usually delivers expectations of terror, dread, Gothic horror, vampires, and zombies. Paranormal doesn’t have to be creepy.
UFO = Unidentified Fictional Objectivity
What softer word may be used to describe a story with less fright?
Because there IS a softer side to paranormal where the curious reader has a gentle experience of the unreal and the surreal is a compelling revelation. Not bloodthirsty curse-driven comeuppances but pleasant curvilinear journeys around subjective human experience –stories narrated from the afterlife or misadventures into loops of reincarnation, lucid dreaming, the outskirts of Premonitionville, quantum leaps of time-slipping, and insightful possibilities venturing into zones with more relaxed outer limits. We can be a wondering wanderer through the doors of perception and peek behind the looking glass without having to sleep with a light on afterwards.
Champion the unheard of. Address the unspeakable. Dismiss the notion of impossible. See dead people… in a good way. Fill your pockets with unbelievable confidence. Flip off a demon, bare your teeth at a vampire, beam yourself senseless. Delight that the afterlife is a country of our own making. We can die outside the box and reincarnate at will.
The key word in paranormal fiction is ‘fiction’! (translation: a story that exceeds the constraints of normal of lying)
The word fiction notifies you that something or everything in a story is untrue. Paranormal informs a reader that the story operates within the flexible realm of metaphysics. Language goes one better and adds prefixes to nice calm words in order to jazz up the tension: un, other, super, extra, and para (which means above). These beget: unreal, surreal, otherworldly, supernatural, extraordinary, and paranormal. Mystical, fantasy, make-believe, and magical are icing on the cake.
WE WANT TO BELIEVE
EXTRAORDINARY TRUTHS ARE INTERNAL; NOT ‘OUT THERE’
What PARANORMAL-FRIENDLY stories are your favorites? Mine are:
BOOKS (and also films): ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’, ‘The Lovely Bones’, and the ‘Harry Potter’ series. MOVIES: ‘The Lake House’, ‘What Dreams May Come’, ‘Somewhere in Time’, ‘Field of Dreams’, ‘Groundhog Day’, ‘Back to the Future’, ‘Close Encounters’, ‘Jurassic Park’, and ‘Ghostbusters one’