Novelist George R. Lopez, co-author of the science fiction suspense thriller In a Flicker, plans to premiere his first book, co-written by Andrea Perron, during the New Orleans horror and paranormal writers conference, UndeadCon.
Along with Perron, the author of supernatural trilogy House of Darkness House of Light, the true story behind the major motion picture The Conjuring, Lopez is a featured guest of the 2015 UndeadCon writers conference and the annual Anne Rice Vampire Lestat Ball, this year entitled the Gathering of the Ancients.
A respected paranormal investigator, George is the founder of Dead Air Paranormal Radio as well as the Florida-based Port Orange Paranormal Society. He co-hosts the weekly radio show A World Awakening with Andrea. In a Flicker was released for online sales on October 19.
George served as an intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force during the Cold War. During his tour of duty, he lived in Europe for three years, where he developed a love of European history. The very busy Mr. Lopez was kind enough to agree to an email interview for readers of atombash.com New Orleans Literature.
Dionne Charlet: George, I understand that you began to host A World Awakening with Andrea Perron when the idea “came about after a long conversation one night” as Andrea put it during your last podcast. Andrea said it “instantly manifested” with that discussion. How would you describe the show?
George R. Lopez: “A World Awakening… Wow! From the get-go Andrea Perron and I knew of and felt the separation and isolation oppressing the paranormal community. So many people over so many years beginning to doubt, starting to lose faith in a pseudo-science that, for the better part of the last decade, had reached a fever pitch. Our intent with the show concept was to help restore the faith. The faith in the field, in people, in ourselves and in the world we live in.”
DC: Followers of the show, or ‘The Tribe’, regularly discuss topics with you and Andrea via social media. How has interacting with these fans changed your life?
GRL: “Our show fans, or as we call them, ‘The Tribe’, from the onset of A World Awakening have been so much more than just a cheering section. They have been a guide, a friend and an ally as we continue this journey WITH them each week and with every guest and topic. Our close, personal connection and interaction has extended to many of them becoming friends through social media and many have traveled great lengths to meet Andrea and me at paranormal events. They have no doubt changed my life in the aspect of how much of what we convey in our messages means greatly to their lives.”
DC: You said during your most recent broadcast, “The guest really starts and keeps the tempo based up on the topics we discuss.” Who are some of your favorite guests?
GRL: “Our guests are such an integral part of the show’s success in that they bring so many unique perspectives under the paranormal umbrella of topics from spirit phenomena to Ufology to demonology and beyond! We’ve had love fests with our guests and brutal debates, all in search of the answers we are all seeking. Johnny Zaffis of Haunted Collector, Nick Groff of Ghost Adventures, Grant Wilson of Ghost Hunters, Keith Johnson – demonologist are some of our favorite and reoccurring guests. Well, actually they’re also great friends of mine and Andrea’s.”
DC: What do you think it is about Andrea Perron that draws so many people to her?
GRL: “It is a cosmic enigma the magnetic attraction Andrea has on the people around her, People are simply drawn to her energy. Some cannot help to even weep when they meet her. If I were to put a label on it the attempt to do so would fall short or the true reasons why she has such an effect on them. They all seem to feel an immediate connection. They all feel like they’ve known her in another life. It’s dumbfounding to watch it happen!”
DC: Just on the process of writing in itself, what do you most enjoy?
GRL: “Messing with the reader. I’ve been told since my teens I should have been a psychiatrist because of how I think. Writing In A Flicker was an homage to all who made that suggestion to me, getting into the psyche of the readers through words.”
DC: Did you use any of the novel writing methods, for example, the Snowflake Method?
GRL: “If there is such a methodology as ‘Layering’, that’s what this would be. I just wrote from my imagination and heart, asking myself along the way ‘What would I want to read?’
DC: I understand you had the plot festering in your mind for at least a couple decades? Have you written any other fiction, short stories, flash fiction, etc., prior to this novel?
GRL: “No, not really. That is why I have at least six more stories in my demented brain to unleash into the world after this one, including a sequence of books after In A Flicker following this plot. Truthfully, had it not been for Andrea Perron encouraging me to put pen-to-paper this story may have never seen the light of day and would have remained locked in my brain forever!”
DC: In what way did you work with Andrea to co-author the project?
GRL: “After I wrote the raw-manuscript, which took me seven months, I turned it over to Andrea to enhance the story. For the next year she and I fought like cats and dogs over the content. I wanted the readers to hate us and she wanted then to love us. I think we found a happy balance in these pages.
“The responses to In A Flicker have been astounding! Mostly, three words are sent at first in messages. ‘Oh my God!’
“Then comes the emotional substance of the reader as to how the story impacted them and haunts them after they finish reading it, then go back and read it again! It played like a movie in my mind for twenty five years and now I’m hearing the same thing from the fans of this novel.”
DC: As a featured guest of UndeadCon and the Gathering of the Ancients Ball, what are you most looking forward to? Any plans for New Orleans haunts?
GRL: “As a featured guest of UndeadCon and the Gathering of the Ancients Ball, I’m so looking forward to so much! This is my first trip to New Orleans so I WILL get some impromptu paranormal investigating in over the weekend. I’m looking forward to the event’s long list of authors, speakers and gala happenings. Not to mention being in one of the most haunted cities in America during Halloween weekend!!!”
DC: What is the most fascinating place you’ve visited? Is there a location you will not likely visit again?
GRL: “Although New Orleans may indeed become my favorite place to have visited, it will have some stiff competition for that title. Having visited on multiple occasions the Stanley Hotel, the Trans Allegheny, Rolling Hills and Pennhurst Asylums, Waverly Hills Sanatorium and Bobby Mackey’s as well as the great cities of Savannah and St. Augustine in Florida it’s hard to pick one as the best. I will say this. There’s a small ghost town in the middle of the Ocala National Forest in Florida that was at one time my favorite place to train my team and bring guests due to activity and wonderful spirits sharing a story. Then, four years ago, something or someone opened Pandora’s box there and released something very dark, very ancient. It affected my life in such a way it is a place I dread returning to but have been at the request of a few seasoned researchers such as John Zaffis, Brian Cano and yes, even Andrea Perron.”
DC: Wow, that last mention really sounds scary! Thank you so much for taking the time to provide such fascinating answers to these questions for atombash.com New Orleans Literature readers. I can’t wait to listen again next Tuesday, and to see you at UndeadCon!
For more information on George R. Lopez, find him on Facebook. To catch his show A World Awakening, follow the show’s Facebook page for the weekly hyperlink and tune in on Tuesday nights at 9 p.m. EST.
The 2015 UndeadCon writers conference runs Thursday, Oct. 29th through Sunday, Nov. 1st. George will be part of “The Ghost Panel”, an hour-and-a-half-long discussion that will take place on Friday, Oct. 30 from 2 – 3:30 p.m. and will include In a Flicker co-author Andrea Perron, New York Times bestselling author Heather Graham, author and medium Kalila Smith, YA author Greg Wilkey, and budding paranormal author Viktor Salazar. For ticket information to attend the UndeadCon Ghost Panel and Gathering of the Ancients Ball featuring George R. Lopez and Andrea Perron, click here.