Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Am I Psychic or Just Plumb Crazy?


WINNER WINNER!!! BECKY LEJEUNE you have won the free copy of GOTCHA! and the promo items. Please email me at christie (@) christie - craig.com

P.S. Make sure you guys pop over to novel thoughts, see link below, for another chance to win a copy of Gotcha!!!

Thanks!

CC

Just a little note: Tomorrow I’m going to be guest blogging at Novel Thoughts and giving away another signed copy of Gotcha! as well some other next items. So make sure you pop over and have a good laugh about some of my brushes with the law. Yup, I’ve had a few.
http://novelthoughts.wordpress.com/



It’s almost time . . . (May 26th to be exact) time for GOTCHA! to be released. And to celebrate this event I’m giving away a prize. Yup, all you have to do is post a comment to be entered in a drawing to win a copy of GOTCHA!, as well as a personalized Christie Craig pen and flip notebook. So don’t forget to post a comment. Now for the blog:

* * *

I recently got this question from a reader: Do you ever think that the ability to create characters out of thin air is a little mystical? That it could somehow be tied to a sixth sense?

Hmm. Basically what they were asking was, did I think of myself as gifted in the psychic sense? It was an intriguing question and one that got me thinking and . . . reminiscing.

While I’m not sure my storytelling talent stems from any sixth sense, more than likely it stems from me just being plumb crazy. Hey, I create characters, throw a bunch of problems at them and then have fun watching them get themselves out of trouble.

Nevertheless, I have to admit that I do see myself as a bit . . . intuitive. And frankly, I could go one step further and tell you that this intuitiveness may even be inherited. Yup, to this day, I remember her.

She was old--always old in my childhood memories. I don’t know exactly how old she was, but I’m betting she was in her seventies or early eighties. That doesn’t seem so old now, but when you’re six, seventy seems ancient.

Like myself, she was small in statue, probably not even five feet tall. Then again, maybe she just looked short. As far back as I can remember, she walked hunched over, sort of how a child envisions a wicked witch would look. Complete with the coarse gray hair, pointed chin, and crooked fingers. This witchy-looking character was my great-grandma and she lived with my grandmother, Nana.

Oh, don’t misunderstand, I never saw Granny—that’s what we all called her—as wicked. But the witch part, well, I was young and had an overactive imagination. Ahh, but looking back, I still have to wonder. I wonder a lot. Because as wild as my imagination was, there was a lot of it based on facts.

I remember hiding right behind the dining room door, listening and occasionally getting brave enough to peek inside to watch her performing her . . . “magic.” She read people’s fortune. She would mix some weird ashes with tea, she’d have the person having their fortune read, sip from the cup, then she’d have the person turn the cup over on the saucer and twirl it around. While it twirled, my great-granny would repeat some strange words I didn’t recognize. Then she would turn that cup back over, look inside at the patterns made by the tea and ashes and she read the person’s fortune. Sometimes, I’d even see the people leave her money before they left.

She wasn’t a gypsy. There was no sign hanging in my Nana’s yard, advertizing Granny’s fortune telling or palm reading, but somehow the people knew and they came. When she wasn’t reading people’s fortunes, she sat in her chair in the living room, watching daytime soaps and spitting in her spittoon. Yup, she dipped snuff. You’d sometimes see a little brown juice at the side of her bottom lip.

When ever she was spitting, I stayed away, I didn’t like the sound of that black juice hitting the bottom of that tin spittoon. Sppss . . . ding. Sppss . . .ding.

But she wasn’t always spitting, and while I might have been half afraid of her, I was more in awe of her. I remember occasionally watching her aged, crooked fingers make doll beds that she sold to bring in extra money. (I guess fortune telling wasn’t that lucrative of a business.) She’d take cigar boxes and those old-fashioned clothes pens and with lace, material, and pillow stuffing, she’d make the cutest doll beds, complete the little dolls all snug under their tiny blankets, their heads resting on tiny homemade pillows that she’d sewn by hand and with her pedal sewing machine.

Yup, Granny was unique and to say the least, she was mysterious. I was told, and my daddy still stands by it, that when she was younger, she was often called to the hospital to talk the “burn” out of burn victims. A healer, they’d called her.

You know how some smells are associated with people you’ve known? Well, to this day the smell of cedar and peppermint instantly brings back her memory. Because sometimes she’d take me into her bedroom, lift open her old cedar chest, pull out her huge two-foot long stick of peppermint that people would give her for Christmas, then she’d pull out an old hammer, the kind that looked homemade out of cast iron, and she’d whack off a piece of that candy for me.

The funny thing was, I seldom could eat that candy. You see, Granny was a widow. She was a widow times five. Yup, she’d buried five husbands in her life. While I was told to never ask about them, and it makes perfect sense that she probably loved them all, and it hurt her to talk about their short lives, my overactive imagination couldn’t help but to make me wonder what else Granny had whacked with that hammer of hers. Of course, if Granny had been a witch, she wouldn’t have had to use a hammer, but just put a spell on them.

Nevertheless, every now and then when I find myself “knowing” something will happen, like knowing that the phone is about to ring, and then I’m proved right, I always think about Granny. I wonder if perhaps, I don’t have a few mysterious gifts. Not that I think my crazy, quirky stories are a result of any of those gifts. Nope, I think they are just a sign of my whacky sense of humor and a little disturbed mind.

What about you? Do you ever think you have a little bit of intuitiveness? Do you have some odd family relative that made your own childhood imagination go a little wild?

Don’t forget to post a comment for a chance to win a copy of Gotcha! and some neat other prizes.

47 comments:

housemouse88 said...

Hello,

Don't remember any strange relatives growing up. Your granny sounds like a neat woman. Please enter me in the contest. Have a great day.

Phyllis Bourne said...

Hmmm...well, I had a great aunt who insisted she was making our garage disappear, and my mom made me say it was gone so my aunt would shut up.

Christie Craig said...

House Mouse 88,

She was a neat lady and a real character. I'm going to have to use her in a book someday.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Phyllis,

LOL! I can just imagine you looking at the garage and then lying that it wasn't there. Too funny.

CC

Teri Thackston said...

I've had feelings and dreams come true so I totally believe in that stuff. And fess up, Christie, you've had a few paranormal experiences beyond telephones.

Becky LeJeune said...

My grandmother swears to this day that she knew when my mom was going into labor with me. Strangest thing, there must be some connection because I had a nightmare about here recently and found out the next day that she was in the hospital.

No strange relatives that I remember growing up, but some of my extended family were odd and I know I made up all kinds of stories about what was going on in their lives.

Anonymous said...

Christie, I fear *I* am the strange relative. ;) And I think being strange has a lot to do with being a writer. Here's an intuitive wink atcha... Diane

Christie Craig said...

Teri,

Okay, you caught me. Maybe I've had a few more intuitive moments that the phone ringing.

If you ask my husband he will tell you, "I keep waiting for her to pull a broom out of her backside and start flying around the room."

But the problem with all my intuitiveness is that it doesn't work on command. Just when it decides to pop up.

Thanks Teri for stopping in. Oh...you guys should go to Teri's my space and get a peek at her son in a video. Scroll down to the video for "Our Weakest Memory". Her son is the young man who's despondent over losing his love. And the woman in his flashbacks is his friend Chantal.


http://www.myspace.com/chrome44

CC

Christie Craig said...

Becky,

Oh...I love those dream connections. And I think we all had some odd family members. And by strange I mean more than the uncle who dropped his tie in the gravy every holiday.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Diane,

I'm with you. I've grown up to be the strange relative, too. LOL.

Of course, most of them say, "Hey, that's Pete's daughter the writer. She writes "those" books!"

Too funny. Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Suzan Harden said...

And everyone needs to read GOTCHA! just for the heroine's granny! Trust me, it's soooo worth it!

jbrayweber said...

Hi Christie!
I've had some pretty amazing characters in my family but none that were extraordinarily "gifted".

However, I have some the SWEAR they've seen and felt ghosts.

You're GG sounds like a perfect candidate for a paranormal story. I bet you could write an awesome spooky book!

Jenn!

vicariousrising said...

I could fill a book or three with some of my wacky relatives. My mom thinks she possesses the evil eye and that she can curse people (and birds) to die.

donnas said...

I think some of my relatives are strange. But not really mystical. I think it would be cool though. Oh well...

terrio said...

No magical relatives that I can think of, but I sort of *know* things before they happen. As you say, it's not something I can control, it just happens.

I didn't find out ahead of time if I was having a boy or girl, but I had a dream about a week before giving birth and I knew it was a girl. Then a few weeks ago I had a strong feeling I was going to see someone that day I did not want to see. Sure enough in the mall food court, there he was. I think it actually went better because I was prepared for it. LOL!

Now I'm realizing I'm the strange relative...

tetewa said...

Sounds good, I'd like to be included!

traveler said...

I have had premonitions and happenings which have occurred. These have taken place many times when I knew they would happen. Intuition many times is what keeps me safe and sane. This is a strong force that has always been a safeguard in my life. Enjoyed this cute story.

Tori Lennox said...

Alas, I'm the only strange on in the family. At least that I know about. *g*

Christie Craig said...

Suzan,

You will be thrilled to know that one reviewer referred to the grandmother as sexy! I really like that.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Hi Jenn!

Oh, believe me I have a story already plotted using her character.

And ohh, I love ghost stories. You'll have to share sometimes.

Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Vicariousrising,

I love the sound of the evil eye. One of my daughter's boyfriends said I had an evil eye. But I don't think it stemmed from the paranormal essence, but because I had his murder planned if she didn't break up with him.

Thankfully, she broke up with him before I added him to my compost pile.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Donnas,

I think we all those strange relatives. All my family gatherings are like a classes in writing unique characters.

Ahh, but I do love 'em. This said, I'm glad they don't recognize themselves in my books. LOL.

Thanks for coming by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Terrio,

That happens to me sometimes, too. And because it does, my husband drives me crazy asking me to predict the future. Duh, I can't control it. When I know something, I know it, but I can't seem to figure out how to turn this power on or off.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Tetewa!

You in girl!

Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Traveler,

You sound as if you've found a way to tap into your intuitiveness. I'm still floored and sometimes even a little frightened when these things happen.

Thanks so much for stopping in.

CC

Keri Ford said...

no gifted relatives that I can think of.

I don't do that whole phone's about to ring thing, but sometimes something just feels like a bad idea and I don't go anywhere near it. A lot of the time I'm right.

My problem is I can all too easily see myself or someone I know in situations and that really creeps me out. but I just can't stop it once it pops in mind. It can come from anywhere...reading about a disaster or a horrible death and the images and emotions just start flashing. If I can't get them to stop, I typically end up in tears with a headache. Usually this happens at night or any quiet time when there's little to distract me.

Christie Craig said...

Tori,

It's okay to be strange. I think most writers walk to a different beat.

Then again, those relatives are probably hiding their strangeness behind a facade of normal.

Thanks for coming by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Keri,

I've had things like that happen, too. It can be scary. I think most writers suffer from this. Our imaginations are just so vivid. And if I'm emotionally touched by something, it seems to dig in deep and stay there a while.

Thanks for coming by.

CC

RK said...

Okay,I've had the phone thing happen and certain dreams at important moments --such as the night my son was conceived and the night my old dog died. Creepy, but just one of those things.

Can't wait to get my hands on Gotcha!

Christie Craig said...

RK,

Those things can be creepy, can't they. But it's also fun to poke at them in conversations and to think about.

I just had lunch with some friends and we chatted for over an our about all the paranormal stuff. Both of my friends had family members who did what they called, "Make a table talk." Where they lay hands on a table and it bumps around and you can ask it questions, like bumb once for yes, or tell us how many dimes are in Uncle George's pockets.

Very odd.


Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Sandy said...

Interesting post, Christie. I believe we were all born with this special sense, but over time we lose it. It's forced out by adulthood.

Sandy

Estella said...

I don't remember any strange relatives.

Refhater said...

I've had a few instances when I "had a feeling" something was going to happen and it did.

There was the time that my sister in law took my niece on a cross country flight and I had a feeling that they shouldn't be on a plane. Everytime I thought about them on a plane I got sick to my stomach. Then on their flight home, their plane hit something (most likely a bird) and it shattered the plane's windshield. They had to make an emergency landing with the oxygen masks on and everything.

As for strange relatives, I've got tons of them. My Great Grandma used to have conversations with wild animals that lived in the woods surrounding her house. (She didn't get out much.) She'd talk and the animals would respond in their kind. My dad tells of times when skunks would bring their babies to her and she would hold, pet, and talk to them.

Alexis said...

We have nothing but strange relatives, so it would be hard to pick just one story. Typically, most Italians (off the boat as my grandparents were) believe they can give the "eye." This is some mystical bad luck that is bestowed on some enemy. They believed it so much, that whenever they got headaches they believed it was because someone else gave them the "eye." What a lot of scary,. short women running around dressed all in black...

Christie Craig said...

Sandy,

I've heard that a lot and it makes perfect sense. I guess you could say I'm a bit childlike. Probably could be more childlike.

Thanks so much for dropping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Estella,

Would you like me to loan you some strange family? I have plenty to share. LOL.

Thanks for stopping over.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Refhater,

That is scary. I have a friend who actually got a bad feeling while sitting on the jet way and she made them get her off the plane. Nothing never happened to the plane but it was strange. And I trust her instincts, so if I would have been with her, I'd gotten off too.

I love, love the story about your great grandma. I can see working that into a story. Aren't those family stories fun to reminisce about?


Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Alexis,

I can see them giving the eye, too. Ahh, those unique family members are really to be cherished. They drive us crazy, but they make great story telling material.

Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Brandy said...

I'm the strange one in my family, I'm quite and shy and they? Are not. *G* I've had those dreams and then later had Deja Vu moments when I realized that I had dreamed that exact thing. Sometimes I remember things in time to change the course of those moments. Your Great Grandmother sounds like she was quite a character!

Heather said...

Granny sounds like quite the character! I never knew my paternal grandmother, but she was said to possess second sight. I used to have dreams about entire conversations that would later happen verbatim. Much more so when I was younger, but it does occasionally still happen. I also had dreams about a HS friend's death a week before she died, and had a paranormal experience while visiting an excavated Iron Age farm in Norway.

Jenyfer Matthews said...

I'm another one who probably qualifies as the strange one in the family :)

And I too have moments of insight / intuition / connection. The phone thing happens to me all the time. I frequently get flashes of something that ends up happening - I just knew that my now husband was going to propose the day that he did, and that was really out of the blue :)

Once when I was a teenager, I woke from a sound sleep sitting straight up in bed with my heart pounding. The next day I found out my mother had had a car accident at just about that time of the night (do, do, doooo, do!)

Christie Craig said...

Brandy,

You know, I'm different in a lot of ways to my family, too. When I was little I was certain that I was adopted.

I love those Deja Vu moments.

Thanks so much for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Heather,

I love the all the names tossed out to describe the sixth sense: The second sight. The eye. The evil eye.

Ohh, I'd love to hear about that paranormal experience in Norway. I'll bet it ends up in a book, right?

CC

Christie Craig said...

Jenyfer,

I love it that you knew your hubby was going to propose. How great is that? And the whole car wreck thing is scary.

It's amazing how our brains work.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

booklover1335 said...

No strange characters in my family, they are all pretty normal :) Would love to win the book!

Christie Craig said...

Booklover,

You are lucky, but I will loan you a couple of my nutty relatives if you'd like. LOL.

CC

Lifestooshort said...

All my relatives are strange.....lol.....

lavery328@yahoo.com