If this is the portal to hell, then why don’t you come up out of that ground and get us? -Zak Bagans, Ghost Adventures
No good ghost story, in my opinion, would be complete without a daring crew of paranormal investigators. They provoke the spirits, gather the evidence, research the history of a location, and ultimately provide proof of a haunting if one exists. In my upcoming ghostly romance So Fell the Sparrow, Grace’s neighbor Nellie invites a duo of ghost hunters to the Sparrow House to investigate. Little does Grace know, the paranormal activity has only just begun.
As you are all well aware of by now, my favorite TV show is Ghost Adventures. When I brainstormed and researched for So Fell the Sparrow, I spent many hours observing and taking note of how the Ghost Adventures crew does their infamous lock downs. From the equipment they use to the methods of provocation used to get a spirits attention, this show and ones like it played a big part in how I approached the ghostly scenes of my book.
With that said, I want to introduce you to the team I created for So Fell the Sparrow, loosely inspired by real life paranormal investigators and the techniques they use to gather evidence of the afterlife. They’re called Great American Paranormal, based out of Seattle and made up of two childhood best friends who share a passion for ghosts.
Ian Black – Lead investigator and founder of Great American Paranormal
“You can use your science as a crutch all you want, Doc. But it won’t protect you from this. These spirits will harm you.”
“You wanted us in here, didn’t you? Now we’re here. Show yourself! Throw this chair again. Use my energy!”
Ian was a lot of fun to write. He’s your typical headstrong Aries; stubborn, proud, and active in his passions. He’s daring and always ready to jump into action if need be, damn the consequences. This is what makes him a great paranormal investigator: he doesn’t give up. He keeps pushing the limit until there is no limit left to push. His drive knows no off button.
It’s these very qualities that have him and Grace butting heads like angry rams the first time they meet. He finds her sarcastic skepticism to be infuriating, and she thinks he’s rude, abrasive, and something of a jackass (a title well-deserved!). While they’re busy overcoming their drastic differences, the spirits around them are closing in.
Ian prefers using provocation to get the attention of spirits, especially if he knows a spirit has harmed a living person. And if that person happens to be someone he cares about, someone who matters, then all hell will break loose.
Before founding Great American Paranormal with his best friend, Alex, Ian was trained as a chef and worked at a popular restaurant in downtown Seattle. He gave up a career of cooking in favor of a career as a ghost hunter instead, convinced he could do it better than anyone else. So he started a YouTube channel and began visiting haunted locations with Alex, and the two quickly became legends within the paranormal community.
Alex Gallagher – Equipment Tech and Investigator
“You’ve reached Alex, dashing, courageous seeker of all things paranormal. We hunt ghosts so you don’t have to.”
“Look at me. I’m like James Bond facing off against Goldfinger. Only instead of a gun I had a Spirit Box.”
When I started thinking about who Ian’s partner would be, I knew I wanted him to be goofy. He would need to have a hefty dose of lighthearted humor to counteract all of Ian’s intensity. Alex rose out of this idea, and became by far one of my favorite characters.
He’s witty, loyal, and wildly intelligent, quick to make a joke and always ready to catch you when you fall. He’s been Ian’s best friend since they were kids, and I had a blast writing the inside jokes and humor between the two of them. They’re both colossal nerds. Big time geeks. But that’s what makes them entertaining and so true to what real ghost hunters are like. They may act cool, but open up a conversation about classic horror flicks and Star Wars and suddenly that wall of cool comes crashing down real fast.
Alex has a huge heart, as shown by his immediate connection to the psychic medium in the story, Jackie. Only someone with such an honest, accepting heart could tear down the walls of Jackie’s defenses and fears, showing her how to love.
In addition to being a nerd and a die-hard romantic, Alex is also a tech genius. He handles all of the equipment they use to hunt down ghosts and is the one behind the scenes filming while Ian confronts spirits. His natural gift for electronics and his engineering mind made him the perfect man for the job.
Here’s a snippet from one of my favorite scenes from So Fell the Sparrow that perfectly illustrates the kind of friendship these two men share.
“You don’t know what you’re talking about, man.”
“Actually, I do.”
“Just admit that you’re wrong on this.”
Alex shot a disparaging look at his partner. “You’re telling me you seriously think Jason has a cooler mask than Michael Meyers.”
Ian fought back a grin and kept his eyes on the road as he drove them the last few miles to their destination. How he’d gotten suckered into driving so Alex could tinker with his new infrared device, he had no idea. But he certainly had no intention of losing this argument. “Jason is by far cooler, period. And he has a machete.”
“Jason is lame, dude. So lame.”
“You wouldn’t say that if he had his machete to your throat.”
“It wouldn’t matter because I’d go Michael Meyers on his ass and slash his throat first.” Alex beamed triumphantly.
Ian only shook his head. “Good luck with that. Jason would have you flat on the ground in shreds before you even knew what hit you.”
“Regardless of how dead I would be, that doesn’t change the fact that Meyers has the better mask. It’s a freaking face. You just can’t compete with that.”
“Anybody can put on a face mask and scare people. It takes skill to wreak havoc in a hockey mask,” Ian insisted, tapping his hands on the wheel in time to AC/DC’s Highway to Hell. “Just admit that I’m right.”
“The day you’re right is the day Hell freezes over and starts selling ice cream,” Alex fired back with a daring grin. “We both know I’m the brains of this outfit.”
Ian snorted out a laugh. “If you’re the brains, then what does that make me?”
“The brawn. Though, I pretty much have that covered, too.”
Now you know the scoop behind Great American Paranormal, the ghost hunting team featured in So Fell the Sparrow! These two guys play such a pivotal role in the book, not only in helping uncover the cause of paranormal activity at the Sparrow House but also in rescuing Grace and Jackie from their personal demons. I did mention this is a romance, didn’t I? :p
Check back next week for an in depth look at the ghost hunting equipment featured in the book! And don’t forget to download a copy of Gypsy of Spirits on Amazon for an extended preview of So Fell the Sparrow!
Until then, over and out!