Ever Had Your Fortune Told?

Posted on 27th June, 2015

Yesterday I began reading Searching for Steven by Jessica Redland, in which the main character, Sarah, finds an old cassette tape of her meeting with a fortune teller. She has never been able to recall the details of the session because of being drunk at the time, so this is the first she's heard of The One for her being called Steven. 

Have you ever had your fortune told? At Searching for Steven's virtual launch party, this was a question posed by Jessica. Seeing lots of others say "Yes," and start giving details made me feel it was all right for me to come clean about having done it myself. 

Come clean? Well, yes. You see, I don't believe in fate or predestination. I don't believe our lives are mapped out. So why did I have the reading? Out of curiosity; and also, I was egged on by a friend - two reasons why a lot of people have a reading, I imagine. 

Of course, some people believe in it. My Great-Auntie Dorothy was a great one for fortune-telling and she used to drag Gran along for company. On one occasion, during the War, Gran was told, "One of the boys is going to die." 

Gran and my mum decided this must mean Dennis, because he was in the RAF and hence at the highest risk. (I am proud to say Uncle Dennis was one of "the Few.") In the event, though, it was the youngest son who died; and not in combat, either, but in an horrific freak accident in training. 

"One of the boys is going to die." A genuine prediction? Or a fairly safe bet when said to the mother of three grown sons in wartime? 

Which brings me back to my own tarot reading. "Fairly safe bet" sums it up. The reading was generic. It could have applied to plans I had at the time, but if my plans had been different, it could have applied to them equally well. I'll be honest. I was disappointed. We're all intrigued by fortune-telling, aren't we?  

But it isn't for real.... is it? 

As a young woman, my mum was told she was going to marry a teacher called Peter. And years later, she did. 


How about you? Have you ever had your fortune told? What predictions were you given? Do leave a comment and afterwards why not have a look at this link to Searching for Steven. 


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Comments (18)

Thanks for commenting, Carol. I'm inclined to agree with you. One of the heroine's friends believes that you control your destiny which gets the heroine to think of things in a different way. I don't think I could accept the idea that everything is predetermined because what would be the point, otherwise? x
Thanks for the positive comments about my book, Jan. I hope you do read and enjoy it :-)
Great anecdote Wendy. That's really made me laugh :-)
Thanks Jen, if you do add Steven to your growing pet, I hope you enjoy him :-)
I know exactly what you mean and I'm with you, Carol, on not believing the future is preordained. Every choice we make changes each possible future. Yet, even if I explain away the prediction my gran received as guesswork based on the circumstances of the time, that still doesn't explain the prediction that my mum - the biggest non-believer of all time - received.

Thanks for dropping by, Carol. Lovely to hear from you.
Great blog Susanna, I thought it very interesting because there are usually two camps - those that believe in fortune tellers and those that don't. I fall somewhere in between because although I don't believe that some of the people who claim to tell the future are genuine I do believe there are people that can read the future. But my belief is that our future in not preordained and we have the ability to change the future with every choice we take. So if the future can be read it can either be only for the immediate future or for the future depending on current circumstances - which can change with the choices we make. Does this make sense?
I understand the temptation to have your fortune read, but I can also understand why someone might shy away from it, especially if they are perhaps feeling vulnerable at the time.

I've now finished 'Searching For Steven' and I can assure you it's a terrific read, Jen.
I've never had my fortune told. Almost went the last time I was in Hong Kong but didn't at the last minute. I think it was that what if...especially as I was soon to board a twelve-hour flight!

'Searching for Stephen' sounds like an interesting read - one for my expanding 'bibliographic pet.'
How lovely to hear from you, Jan. I think many of us have that "mustn't tempt fate" thought in the backs of our minds and it's got nothing to do with whether we actually believe. Another one is not wanting to jinx the possibility of a happy outcome by talking about it in advance.

I loved what you said about your lifeline. So good to know that wrinkles have their uses!
I should have said, the book sounds fascinating, Jessica and Sue. Definitely one I'd like to read from the sound of it. :-)
I always say I don't believe in things like this but I'm forever saying, 'I mustn't tempt fate'. Also, I'd always wondered whether the life-line on my left hand which used to have a break half way along was a prediction. I'm pleased to report nothing happened and extra wrinkles in the skin mean that the line is continuous from top to bottom now!
When I was organising a talk on 'Tarot Cards' for National Women's Register. I did go for a reading. I made sure I wasn't wearing my wedding ring or any other clues and I think she sensed my scepticism from the outset. The friend with me was much more 'open' to ideas. It didn't stop me worrying afterwards though!
I love the sports bag prediction, Wendy. It's just so bizarre. I bet you could get a good short story out of that. Thanks for dropping by.
I've only had mu fortune told once and she said, "One of your daughters will give you trouble and the other won't." One of my daughters was running round the hall when she said this and the other tight by my side. She was right of coursed! It also amused me when my friend was told she would marry a man with a sports bag!
I completely agree too Frances. One of the issues my protagonist has in listening to the tape after 12 years is a fear that the clairvoyant will say something bad is about to happen or that the huge change she's just made in her life will prove to be a huge mistake! I would like to think that a true clairvoyant (if there is such a thing) would make out that they couldn't get a reading if they didn't pick up some really bad news
I can understand your feelings, Frances. Let's face it, no one who consults a clairvoyant wants to hear bad tidings. I was about to make a comment about sceptics like myself, who presumably wouldn't take bad tidings too seriously, but then I remembered Gran's experience....
Oh, you're braver than I am. I am too scared of finding out that something ghastly will happen! Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof...
How lovely to hear from you, Jessica. You're right - clairvoyance is a fascinating subject and I think we are all intrigued by it. Wanting to know what will happen to us is obviously a deep human need.

Writers are often asked where they get their ideas from and your "story behind the story" is certainly one of the most unusual! Congratulations on being published. I'm off to bed now to carry on reading "Steven."
It's a fascinating subject area, Susanna. It was a true-life clairvoyant telephone reading that inspired the idea for 'Searching for Steven' when I was told I was going to meet the man of my dreams of that name. I didn't. But I did find a brilliant premise for a book. I visited a clairvoyant again a few years ago (for research purposes, of course) and it was disappointing. I was told that I was about to go on a long-haul holiday, that there was a baby boy who'd just joined the family or was about to be born who'd be very close to me, and a handful of other things, none of which happened. I think there are probably a lot of fakes out there. I'm not sure I believe our future is fully mapped out for us, but I do think that things happen for a reason so I think there's an element of fate in there xx