Do you believe in ghosts? Statistically, the number of believers ranges from between 18% of American adults to a whopping 45%. Most of us would say no, yet...
The folklore of nearly every world culture includes ghost stories
Most of us know someone who has his own ghost story, be it a sighting in a haunted
hotel room, national monument or house.
I've been thinking about ghostly matters because I am working, on and off, on a ghost story. A scary ghost story. But something strange happens when I am writing it.
I can't work at night.
Every time I do, lights turn on and off. Or objects fall off shelves. I hear odd thumps downstairs.
I have to write it by daylight, preferably when my husband is home.
Although the ghost is not my main character, I have to know quite a bit about him to create him. His age, his sex, how he died. And what he wants. Which means I am thinking about the ghost and the netherworld he inhabits quite a bit.
Meg, a twelve year old girl, is my main character. She's being haunted, in an evil way. Meg has to protect her family, especially her little sister. Stuff happens to her, often at night.
All those thumps and flickering lights - it's only my own imagination, right?
When I get too frightened, I go back to work on my other middle grade, a story which
features robots. In some ways, artificial intelligence is as scary as ghosts. One can't be genuinely certain what robots may do. Or think.
But at least I'm not concerned about mechanical men and women trooping up the stairs to my office.