Archive for the Book Signings & Appearances Category

CHASING GHOSTS

Posted in Afterlife, Book Signings & Appearances, Ghost Hunting, Ghosts, Investigating, Paranormal, Updates, Wednesdays with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 10, 2012 by Dave Lapham

Before I get started on the blog, I want to put in a plug for our book-signing (Vivian Campbell, Stalked by Spirits, and me, Ghosts of St. Augustine, Ancient City Hauntings, Ghosthunting Florida, and 12-21-12) next Saturday, Oct 13th, Noon to 3 p.m., at the GhostStop in St. Cloud. Easy to find—1221 10th St.—and that’s not 1221 East 10th St (I think that’s a cow pasture.) Anyway, the GhostStop is in downtown St. Cloud. And even if you don’t want to talk to us, come on in and check out all the equipment. It’ll make you drool!

Now, about chasing ghosts. As I’ve said before, I think there’s a difference between ghost hunting and paranormal investigation. Ghost hunting is, well, hunting for ghosts. You go into a site to see if there is any paranormal activity there. Think about some of the more popular spots; Lake Worth Theater, Ripley’s in St. Augustine, the Leaf Theater in Quincy, The May-Stringer House in Brooksville. Those places are known to be haunted, and people go there to see if they can experience the reported activity. A paranormal investigation attempts to determine if a site does have paranormal activity. Most often residents of a home or other building or site invite investigators to find out if the home or site is haunted. When you hunt ghosts, you go to a site expecting, hoping, to encounter something paranormal. When you investigate, you’re looking more for an explanation of an event or activity that, on the surface, can’t be explained.

When you’re looking for places to hunt ghosts, a good rule of thumb is “the older, the better.” Not true across the board, but something to keep in mind. Older sites have more history and more chances that something occurred there to keep spirits around. Historical sites are always good. Think Gettysburg, Chickamauga, Andersonville, or, closer to home Olustee, all from the Civil War. Or try the Kingsley Plantation on Talbot Island for a really ancient site. And there’s always the Castillo in St. Augustine. And you can peruse the history of your area to find a lot of places where epic tragedies happened. Personally, I like to go to places which have never been explored before, like the courthouse in Tavares, which I visited with Outcast Paranormal Society a few weeks ago. That was exciting. And you never know what you’re going to find.

When you go into an often-investigated site like, say, Ripley’s, and you don’t find much, it can be tough on your ego. “What did I do wrong? Why didn’t I experience X, Y, or Z?” I guess that’s why so many groups use the known sites for training new members. If they don’t experience the paranormal activity there, they’re probably doing something wrong. In any case, historical sites are always a good bet.

Then, there are cemeteries. I have said in the past that since people usually die someplace else and their bodies are transported to cemeteries for burial, there won’t necessarily be much activity in those sites. But, that’s not always true. In the first place, cemeteries are often portals for ghosts trying to move on. Of course, murders and other crimes sometimes take place in cemeteries, and natural and man-made disasters can devastate cemeteries as well as other locations. Sometimes, too, grave robbers anger departed souls desecrating grave sites.

If you’re interested in graveyard ghosts, I recommend a comprehensive book by Melba Goodwyn, a friend from Texas. The book is Chasing Graveyard Ghosts. Melba is an experienced clairvoyant parapsychologist with a vast knowledge of astrology, numerology, divination, and traditional psychology. Her book is a text for learning about graveyard ghosts.

And, finally, don’t forget next Saturday’s book signing at the GhostStop, AND don’t forget checking out 12-21-12 (by Parker Lee) on Kindle. If you don’t have a Kindle, Amazon will give you a free app to download e-books to any device.

Last but not least, please pass the word around about my site. Hey, give me some feedback, too.

GHOST HUNTING EQUIPMENT

Posted in Afterlife, Book Signings & Appearances, Ghost Hunting, Ghosts, Investigating, Paranormal, Updates, Wednesdays with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 3, 2012 by Dave Lapham

Have you ever been in a tackle shop? If you haven’t, go to the fishing section in Bass Pro or some other store that sells fishing equipment. You’ll find a vast area of gear, especially lures, many of which are designed more to catch fishermen than fish. You can buy a lot of lures and never catch anything, except maybe a cold. Same is true for ghost hunting equipment. There are a lot of items out there in the market place which may or may not enhance your ghost hunting.

As I’ve said before, if you want to get into ghost hunting and paranormal investigating, join a group of experienced folks; that’s the best way. A well-established team will have all the equipment anyone could ever need and will know how to use it. But if you do want to get your own gear, do some research.

And by the way, I’d like to suggest that there is a difference between ghost hunting and paranormal investigating. If you’re ghost hunting, you’re, well, ghost hunting. You’re looking for spirits, trying to prove their existence. If you’re doing an investigation, chances are you’ve been invited by a client to determine if a particular place has paranormal activity. That’s perhaps a minor difference, but a difference all the same.

Anyway, all you really need is a flashlight, a notebook and pencil, a watch, a tape recorder, a camera, and possibly a first aid kit. The flashlight is mostly for safety purposes, although if you have one that turns on and off by loosening and tightening the bulb end, you might be able to get a spirit to communicate with you by asking it to turn the light on and off. The notebook, pencil, and watch are used to record your observations and track the sequence of events. And use an old-fashioned spring-driven watch. A tape recorder is used to record EVPs—and your oral comments, if you wish. Just be sure you identify yourself if you record anything. A camera can capture apparitions, but more commonly just orbs. Still, a good piece of gear to have. If you’re going into old buildings, especially at night, you might take a long a first aid kit. Some of us are clumsier than others. And make sure you have a gillion batteries. Entities my try to manifest themselves by drawing on the electric energy in their immediate surrounds—that’s your camera/flashlight/tape recorder/etc batteries. Make sure you have lots.

That’s gear you really need. But, wait, there’s more! You can go crazy buying equipment, but with some research and caution, you can greatly enhance your investigating with a few other items. An EMF meter and a thermometer are good to have, or get a Mel meter which combines both functions. Oh, and Dr. Oester of IGHS recommends a compass in lieu of or at least in addition to an EMF meter. Wide swings of 15° – 20° will indicate that you might have something. Then there’s FLIR thermal cameras, motion sensors, laser grids, IR lights, dowsing rods, full spectrum digital cameras, night vision camcorders, DVR systems, spirit boxes, and don’t forget vests, and nifty T-shirts—shall I go on?

What I would suggest is that you spend some time with experienced people to see what they use and at stores like the GhostStop. Shawn, Jennifer and the folks there are all experienced ghost hunters. Shoot, Shawn invented a lot of the stuff he sells. Get some hands-on time with different kinds of gear. Also, do some reading. I’ve suggested Anthony Mamone’s GHOST HUNTER’S EQUIPMENT GUIDE which you can get as an e-book from Amazon for $.99. (And if you don’t have a KINDLE, Amazon will give you a free app to download to some other device. And you can get other books online or from the GhostStop.

If you’ve suddenly become fire up about ghost hunting, don’t let yourself be dazzled by all the equipment. Get the essential stuff, get into a group, do some research, and only when you feel comfortable with a piece of gear buy it.

Remember that all this equipment are just tools to enhance your ability to encounter paranormal activity. That’s all they are.

Hey, and don’t forget GhostStop’s big grand opening on Friday, October 5th, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Paul Bradford and Scott Tepperman from Ghost Hunters International will be there.

Also, don’t forget Saturday, October 13th. Vivian Campbell (Stalked by Spirits) and I will be there from noon to 3 p.m. signing books.