Writing the paranormal novel takes more than adding in a vampire or wizard . . . but whatever characters you do decide to cast, you have to make them believable!
Except, what if one of the ‘fantasy’ characters you write about actually exists?
In my YA contemporary paranormal love story, 18 Things, there’s a bit of inspiration behind the inspirational side of the novel.
When I was almost twelve years old, I was ready to commit suicide. You may find that hard to believe, but I’d already suffered many injustices by that age and was convinced that:
a) God wasn’t real –otherwise He wouldn’t let all those bad things happen to me
b) God was real, but He hated me
c) God was real, and He didn’t hate me, and He had a plan for my life
I really needed to discover the answer to my question before I made my decision, because I’d heard if you commited suicide you couldn’t go to Heaven. And of course I didn’t want to go to Hell.
So I prayed.
I didn’t even get on my knees.
I stared up at the ceiling before going to sleep that August night in 1991 and prayed in my head:
“Jesus, if you are real, I need you to show me a supernatural sign that you love me and have a plan for my life. If you do this, I promise I won’t commit suicide. I promise I will endure anything if you love me. Please show me a ghost tomorrow. If you don’t, I am commiting suicide and you can’t send me to Hell, okay? Because that means You didn’t hold up your end of the bargain.”
I went to bed honestly thinking I would end my life the next day. I’d already brainstromed a list of ways to do it and had the materials ready.
So, God knew I meant buisness.
The next morning, I opened my bedroom door to a man on his knees, his hands folded in prayer, with a smile on his face and looking up at me. He was wearing blue. But that’s not the most unusual thing about him.
We looked at each other for a few seconds before I shut my door, trembling in disbelief. Then I dropped to the floor, made the sign of the cross, and said another prayer.
“Dear Jesus, thank you for answering my prayer, and please don’t ever show me that again.”
When I opened my door, the “ghost” was gone. In his place was a peace in my heart I’d never known before. I didn’t speak to anyone about it for five years, and when I did, it was my now husband (who of course, teased me mercilessly). But that one ‘sign’ kept me from comitting suicide all through middle and high school.
Flash forward to another night in August of 1997 when I truly give my heart to Jesus. When I realize I survived all the atrocities in my life because God had a plan and purpose in mind. When I realized my ‘ghost’ was probably my guardian angel. When I realized that out of six billion people on earth, God cared so much about me, He heard the cries of a little girl and gave His angel the okay to answer my prayer.
The next year I married the man who mocked me for seeing my little blue man. But he still didn’t believe me. One day, while I had some free time inbetween my college classes at UCF, I browsed through Barnes & Noble (yeah, not much has changed, lol). I went to their religious section and flipped through a book on the power of angels. Immediately, I was drawn to a chapter on Guardian Angels. In it, the author quoted from the diaries of a German mystic who died in 1919. Her diaries are widely circulated because she described a visual relationship with many angels. From her writings:
Jamie Ayres writes young adult paranormal love stories by night and teaches very young adults as a public school teacher by day. When not at home on her laptop or at school, she can often be found at a local book store grabbing random children and reading to them. So far, she has not been arrested for this. She lives in southwest Florida with her prince charming, two children (sometimes three based on how Mr. Ayres is acting), and a basset hound. She spent her youthful summers in Grand Haven, Michigan and this setting provided the inspiration for her debut novel, 18 Things. She really does have grandmothers named Olga and Gay but unlike her heroine, she's thankfully not named after either one of them. She loves lazy pajama days, the first page of a good book, stupid funny movies, and sharing stories with fantastic people like you. Visit her website at http://www.jamieayres.com/