It's official. We're doing it. Third annual Horror Book Fest here we come. Last year's event was fun. We expect this year's fest will be even better. We're keeping the same venue because it worked nicely. But the presenters are all new. Not saying what we have lined up yet. But soon. Very, very soon. And let's just say, that picture you see, it's a hint.
I was born with an interest in ghosts. As a kid, if a story had a ghost in it, I wanted to hear it. In putting my talk together, I realized four things influenced and developed this interest.The first is a short story titled “Georgie.” Georgie is the original friendly ghost. The tale was in my beloved childhood anthology, “The Tall Book of Make-Believe.” I must have read that story a hundred times. I started naming pets Georgie, too.
Another influence is a poem titled “The Highwayman.” In it, lovers are willing to die for each other and in doing so become ghosts who will be together for all eternity. To my young mind, ghosts were romantic.
In sixth grade, my class had to memorize the poem, “The House with Nobody in It.” We had to punctuate it correctly, too. But that’s not the point. The second stanza of the poem laments that the house “wouldn’t be so lonely if it had a ghost or two.” Once again, ghosts are viewed as something positive.
And finally, as a thirteen-year-old, I read “Rebecca.” If you know the story, you know there is no ghost per se in the book. But Rebecca is such a force to be reckoned with, her memory haunts the living. The book haunted me. Maybe I love to be haunted and that’s what I try to do with my novels: write stories that will haunt the reader.
I’ve been asked to come back to Menifee and give my “Ghosts in Literature” talk in September. Of course, I said yes.
Here goes . . .
I write novels. I've written screenplays, short stories, newsletters, business communications and articles. I'm not great at thank you notes. My sister is, but she doesn't know it. I'm not much for blogging. Don't have something to say worth reading everyday. But this is a blog and we'll see what turns up.