Interview with a ghost hunter. Yes, that’s right, a ghost hunter, but the politically correct words may be paranormal investigator. May I present Kathleen Rothenberger?

My next blog after this one, dear readers,  will be a review of Read With the Light On: True Ghost Stories by Kathleen Rothenberger.  The writer and the stories intrigue me both, so I asked Kathleen Rothenberger to pop on over to talk about how she got involved in writing these stories and some other juicy stuff about her. 

kathleen RothenbergerThanks, Kathleen, for sharing with us today.  I’ve never been this close to a ghost hunter!

It’s wonderful to be asked on your blog. I hope the audience would feel free to ask me any questions which come to mind about my profession.

What brought you to this point in your life?  

My family has always been psychic and mediums, going back many generations. In my generation, it’s just myself and my sister who inherited the abilities.

She was only a medium, and I started out only a psychic. There is a difference, as all mediums are psychic, but not all psychics are mediums, with the ability to speak with the other side.

I guess what brought me to this point is a combination of things. My husband and I used to own our own company and the economy knocked us down. A friend of mine, also a psychic, suggested that I actually work as a psychic, as she felt I was very talented at it. So, I’ve been working as a psychic and medium since the 1990s. The book came as a result of two conversations on the same day with different friends, each said I should really write a book, so I sat down and did it.

When did you start feeling the spirit world?

I’d have to say that was very early on, probably about eight years old or so, when a bunch of my friends were all playing on the swingset, and my friend decided to try something stupid, and I heard in my head “Don’t let her do that, she’ll get hurt.”

I tried to stop her but she almost broke her ankle, trying to stop the glider swing with five kids on it, by dragging her foot. That was probably the first time I remember hearing or feeling the spirit world. It was kind of weird, but I didn’t realize that everyone didn’t have the same abilities.

mother to Kathleen

Can you remember the first time you saw a ghost? 

I’d have to say that it was the appearance of my mother, a week after she died. It was like her passing flipped a switch in me, so that I could see her, and be at peace that she was fine, healthy and happy. I didn’t dare tell my dad, as he didn’t believe in this stuff, even though his wife and two daughters could communicate with the spirit world, he disregarded it.

However, after a while, he’d call me and say “Kathy, I think I’m going crazy, I just felt like your mother was here with me.” So, I’d tell him he wasn’t crazy, that my mom was there with him, and it brought him comfort. They were married 38 years and he missed her so, after she died.

Do the ghosts expect anything from you?  Are you able to put them at rest, so to speak?  

Most of the spirits I’ve spoken to over the years have wanted to let their families and loved ones know that they are at peace on the other side/in Heaven, whatever you want to call it.

I have had spirits tell me where their wills are, or where investment papers are, so their wives don’t have to worry about money, or just to pop in and say “Hi, I love you! I’m still around!”

The story in my book about the Haunted Hearse is when a medium friend and I had to send 126 spirits to the other side, so that they were at peace.

I’m so glad you circled the spirits in the back of his hearse.  I see them, a woman, a man and the top of little boy’s head.  Yikes! I’ll make sure to put this picture into my review!
Jack, Jackie and Bernadette red line

One story that I’m writing for my next book is about a man who passed away and was relieved that he didn’t have to deal with his nagging wife anymore. She came to me to talk to him, and he appeared to me, begging me NOT to tell her that he was there, as he said it was so peaceful without her, he hoped she lived another 20+ years! So, in accordance with his wishes, I did not tell his wife that he was there with us.

Do any ghosts actually talk with you, telling you of their problem? 

Some do, yes. If they want to tell their family certain information, such as if the family wonders if it’s a suicide or other cause of death, the spirits will tell me that it was totally accidental, or once, it was actually a suicide, but the spirit changed his mind immediately, but too late, so he asked me to tell his family it was an accident, which it sort of was. The spirit’s wife was so relieved, saying “I KNEW he wouldn’t KILL himself.” The ghost said “Yeah, love, I did, but I know it was a mistake. But I’m ok with it now.” He did not want me to tell her that part, so I didn’t.

I hear a lot of  “shoulda, woulda, coulda” from the other side, when it’s too late to fix it.

One of my favorite connections with the spirit world was a woman who wanted to talk to her deceased fiance, who had gone into the hospital for an operation and didn’t make it. When he came through, I heard Frank Sinatra singing “Fly Me To The Moon”, and when  I asked her if that had any significance, she started crying her eyes out. That was the song he would sing to her all the time, so she was certain that he was really there, letting her know it was him. By the time that reading was over, I was in tears right along with her.

How often do you go a-ghost-hunting?  I understand your husband joins you.  

For about three years, my husband and I led a Halloween History and Hauntings tour in Belleview, Florida, with a friend who was the historian part of the tour, showing interested people the haunted homes and buildings in the area. When we were really going on a lot of investigations, we probably did it twice a month or more.  We haven’t gone very often lately, because of time constraints, and because my husband has a bad knee.

creepyLast weekend I did go on a short investigation  at a very interesting house, it was all boarded up, and haunted by a very malevolent evil spirit. I wasn’t planning on going into the house but when we got there, the spirit was saying “Come here, come on, you know you want to!” So I did. Wow, the energy in there was e-v-i-l. As I wandered around part of the house, I felt horrible energy, and the man that was with me asked where I felt it coming from. I pointed to one particular room, and said “whoever it is, he was in there, and they kept him there.” Then the man showed me something I’d missed. Over my head, on the door and door jamb was both sides of a lock hasp, and a padlock. The evil person had been LOCKED in that room. No wonder I felt such awful energy. They were protecting themselves from whoever that was.


Does each person who feels the spirit world, feel it in the same way? 

No, we don’t. I have been on investigations with other mediums who pick up things that I don’t, and I’ve picked up things that they don’t. It’s kind of like watching a movie or reading a book, everyone has different takes on things.

Some mediums can see spirits as clear as they see live people, others just can hear or sense them. I am able to see, hear and feel them, sometimes as clear as live people, sometimes just as energy, it depends on how well the spirit is able to project their energy to me.

A friend of mine had to get a bluetooth headset, as she can see them as clear as day, and her daughter felt her mom looked weird carrying on entire conversations out loud with “invisible people”, so now it just looks like she’s on her phone. I can hear them either out loud or in my head, and see them in various ways.

That sounds really interesting!  I thought that only happened in movies.  Can you expand on this thought? 

Actually, there are two movies that depict hauntings pretty well-Ghost, with Patrick Swayze, and Sixth Sense, with Bruce Willis and Haley Joel Osment. Those are pretty realistic depictions of what hauntings are like, from both sides, the spirit side and the still alive side.  A certain segment of the population can indeed hear, see and feel spirits, and it’s kind of like  a “secret club”, as we can “sense” each other.

We hear from a lot of people “Oh, man, I wish I could do what you do, I’d love to talk to ghosts.” Nope, you wouldn’t. It is a big responsibility to have, with spirits trying to get you to give messages to their loved ones all the time. In the mediumship sessions I’ve done, I’ve acted like the telephone line, to bring together the living and the dead so that both sides have closure.But it does take a lot out of you, and you end up having to put “walls” up, so you aren’t constantly bombarded by spirit.

Tell us a little about your writing career.

I’d have to say ghost stories, as Read With the Lights On: True Ghost Stories is my first book, and it’s a collection of true paranormal investigations. It was sitting in the back of my mind for ages, and then one day, two friends suggested that I write them down in book form. I’ve always believed in “signs”, so when both of these women suggested it on the same day, I decided “okay, it’s time.” So, I sat down and wrote them all out in a notebook, and then typed them up. I write best in a notebook, it’s easier for me to organize my thoughts with pen in my hand.

They say “write what you know”, so the genre of paranormal investigations and tales from the other side is what I know. My husband wants me to write a book about our dogs, and another one about his 40+ years in the television industry, but I’m afraid working on that with him would be very difficult, so I’m sticking to ghosts for now.

When I write a story, it comes from my memory of events that happened, whether to me, or people I know, so it grows from my personal experiences. I am constantly amazed at how other authors can create entire worlds and populate them with imaginary people. I am more comfortable writing about things I know.

So really, your writing is more a journal of events, right? 

Yes, it is, pretty much. This book, Read With the Lights On: True Ghost Stories was written in bits and pieces, as each short story came to mind. Then, when I thought I had a suitable number of stories for a book, I put them in some sort of order, that made sense at the time. I am currently working another book of ghost stories, which will also be based on my personal experiences. The next book may include some stories of psychic and medium readings that I have been involved in.

Most of my stories are personal. My family has had psychic abilities for generations,  and in my generation, my sister and I inherited these abilities.  The one story that means the most to me emotionally, is the story about my mother.  I’m getting tears in my eyes just thinking about her. She was an amazing woman, and my best friend. She battled cancer from the time I was four years old, till she passed away when I was 38.  I miss her to this day, we would talk on the phone every day and no matter what, she was always upbeat and positive.

Once an investigation is in my head, it’s like the spirits are saying “Write my story, I don’t want to be forgotten!” With a request like that, how could I refuse?

Thank you so much for coming on, Kathleen.  Readers, if you have questions, ask away.  Tomorrow I’ll post my review of her book.

About eileendandashi

I am a lover of books, both reading and writing. 2018 marks the beginning of my own journey from writer to published author. This blog will showcase various authors' thoughts on the elements of novel crafting, and my attempts to find my voice in writing. While journaling this journey, I hope to encourage others to follow their dreams. Book reviews continue as I have the last four years, only making time for my new pursuits.
This entry was posted in Featured Authors, Ghost Stories, Guest Authors, Non-Fiction, Paranormal and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

28 Responses to Interview with a ghost hunter. Yes, that’s right, a ghost hunter, but the politically correct words may be paranormal investigator. May I present Kathleen Rothenberger?

  1. deborahkehoe says:

    Fascinating interview! What a huge responsibility! I do have one question, if she’s reading these comments. When she see’s a ghost, do they appear in true form? Are they ever just shadows or images of blurry light? I had one instance when I was much younger and a,ways thought it was the Ghost of a relative, but the form wasn’t clear. just curious!
    I enjoyed reading this, thanks!


  2. I had the honor of assisting Kathy with formatting her book for release, which meant I read every story. As I recall each page, the hairs on my arms are standing up! I look forward to her next book with a bit of trepidation.


  3. seelkfireice says:

    Interesting topic Eileen! Thank you and Kathleen for the glimpse in her world.
    I totally believe that the spirit world is around us if we open our minds to it. I did for a while with the help of my roommate at the time, who is a psychic. When my mother passed away, I couldn’t go to the funeral, I ‘felt’ her for 3 years until I went to see her grave, then she said goodbye. My psychic friend confirmed that my mother was with me all that time, and so did her mentor.
    It was overwhelming to ‘know’ things and a few instances scary, so I ‘walled’ myself up. I know for many is not a choice they can make.

    Do you get scared, Kathleen? How do you deal with sceptics?


  4. HI, Deborah! It depends on how strong the spirit is, as how they come through. My mom came through as plain as day, I could just see through her. Other spirits come through as hazy or just orbs, sometimes. If a spirit is strong enough, they can come through looking like a live person. Just depends on them. A lot of time, your relatives will come through, to say “Hi”, or just to be there for you.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Nancy, your help was invaluable, believe me. The next book will be fine, no worries. (Only if you believe in ghosts, you’ll be scared-HAHA!)


  6. I don’t really get scared anymore, at first, when I was 8 years old, I was a little skittish, but since my mom could see and hear spirits as well, she explained that it was “normal” for my family, just like my blond hair and green eyes. That made it a lot less scary, as who’d be afraid of blond hair, right? As far as skeptics go, a very wise man told me this quote, a long time ago: “For those that believe, no explanation in necessary. For those that don’t believe, no explanation is possible.” However, there are skeptics who are fearful that they MIGHT believe, and those are the ones who can be shown and explained to. I met a man at my psychic job who was a dyed in the wool skeptic, and had a real “SHOW ME” attitude, so we did a reading and I told him things about himself that he’d never even told his wife! He was not a skeptic after that, and whenever I am working, he is there for conversation, if not a reading. So, some skeptics can be “converted” to believing.


  7. Oh, and the term “paranormal investigator” is more politically correct, as we’re not “hunting” ghosts. When people go on an investigation and taunt the spirits “I dare you to show yourself”, remember, you are talking to someone who was once a live human. If someone got in your face and yelled like that, you wouldn’t take too kindly to that person. So that’s why a lot of those type of ghost hunters don’t get good results, because they are not being respectful to the spirits.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I DO believe in ghosts! I DO, I DO I DO!


  9. Kathleen, my next question would be, what makes a spirit stronger than the other? Could it be their normal physical energy or perhaps the urgency or need they have to touch the physical world again?


  10. Nancy, I must thank you for making Kathleen known to me. I’ve another psychic friend I’ll ask on my blog. Obviously, we are all enthralled with this other dimension.


  11. I stand corrected, Kathleen!


  12. I love this topic. I’m going to ask Valerie Gilbert to my blog. This is right up her alley. What do you think?

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Mickey says:

    I literally had goose bumps up and down my legs and arms as I read this interview. Yes, I believe there are spirits but do hope most of them move on and find a heavenly peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Let’s ask the author. Kathleen, what makes a spirit move on while others don’t?


  15. No, Eileen, that was not a directed at you! It was a general comment, because of those (awful) “ghost hunting TV shows. I watch those and laugh, because I see the spirits on the screen, and the investigators on screen don’t see/feel a thing! They go about it like they’re on safari, and it’s really just trying to communicate with the other side. Communication is more like “Hi, are you there? How are you?” Not “Show yourself!” When I get to be a spirit, and someone talks to me like that? I’ll dump a bucket of paint over their head-“Here I am!”

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Now, why would you want to hang around? I’d really like to know if you have a choice when your time comes.


  17. HI, Mickey! I didn’t mean to scare you, I’m sorry. Wait till you read my book to be scared (lol). There are spirits who are happy to move on, and then, there are ones who don’t want to, for several reasons-they may feel they didn’t live the best lives, and are afraid of “judgement day”, so they stay here, to avoid being punished, or admonished for their earthly deeds. They may not want to leave their loved ones, not realizing they can come back, from time to time. Or, they may not believe there is a “hereafter”, so they stick here. Most do find peace in heaven, but, the way it’s been shown to me is heaven is a wonderful place, but it has a revolving door. So, our loved ones can stay if they want, or they can come back down here to us, and hang out for a while. Nice idea, no?


  18. Yes, now that is really, really fascinating. Here I though it was a one-way trip!!


  19. deborahkehoe says:

    Hazy is a good word for what I saw! Interesting!


  20. deborahkehoe says:

    Are spirits as they were in the human form? If they were horrible as people are they mean spirits? And vice versa? Can they redeem themselves and change after death? I would hope they could!


  21. Excellent question, Deborah! YES! If someone is horrible in this life, they aren’t going to magically transform to “angels” just by dying. They will continue to be mean on the other side.Some do repent and become good spirits, but there is a spirit in an Orlando, FL cemetery, named Mr. Mills, who is a very angry, mean spirit. He will throw branches, rocks and whatever he can get his ghostly hands on at people who come too close to his grave. My husband and 2 friends went there on a spur-of-the-moment investigation, and he shut off the camera, drained the battery to nothing, so no photos could be taken, they felt an intense heat around his grave, and he threw a branch at them. Needless to say, they left pretty quick! And, if someone is a lovely person in life, they will continue to be so, on the other side.


  22. Well, it certainly can be. If you don’t want to come back, you don’t have to! My mom hasn’t come back, aside from the one time that I saw her, and my dad and sister never came back. Either they don’t want to, or don’t know how to, either way, I haven’t seen/heard from them.


  23. One thing that will prompt a spirit to move on, is if they know they have relative/loved ones on the other side waiting for them. If they don’t, or are afraid, they may not want to move on. Most do move on, though.


  24. Seelkfireice, you are so right. The way I explain it is, psychic abilities are a doorway to the other side. Some people throw the door all the way open and say “Oh, Cool! Look at this!!” Others say “Oh, heck, NO!” and nail the door shut. Still others, will open the door to a varying degree, and get some little bits of psychic abilities. Everyone has intuition, we all get that “gut feeling” about things. That’s your psychic ability trying to tell you something. You can definitely wall yourself off from it, I know a good many people who have, because they didn’t want to deal with it. But, even if you wall yourself off, please always listen to your intuition, it can save your life.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. I loved your question, Deborah. This has been very interesting and I’m sure more discussion will prompt more questions. Make sure to come back tomorrow for the review of READ WITH THE LIGHTS ON by Kathleen, herself!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. seelkfireice says:

    Oh I think that would be a great idea! She is awesome!


  27. seelkfireice says:

    Listening to my ‘spidey-sense’ saved me quite a few times, so I know how important it is to listen to it. Closing the ‘door’ was necessary because sometimes I had a feeling that I get to ‘know’ more than I should. It started with dreams when I was around 9 and then every so often get ‘waking dreams’ about people close to me which I can’t close off. They freak out if I mention anything, so I don’t. I guess it is different for me because I have a connection to the living and not the departed like you.
    Good luck in your future endeavors.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Kathleen Rothenberger says:

    Seelkfireice, I understand. Many people have to shut the door and nail it shut. It is so much a part of me, though, that a psychic friend of mine once told me that I live “so far in the spirit world, that I have to be dragged back to the physical world by a string around my ankle every morning.” I thought that was funny, but it’s also very true.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s