1. Women in White: The Haunting of Northeast Florida, Elizabeth Randall
2. Ghost Hunting in Michigan, Bradley P. Mikulka
3. Haunted Philadelphia, Darcy Oordt
4. Oval Office Occult: True Stories of White House Weirdness, Brian M. Thomsen
5. The Spectral Tide: True Ghost Stories of the U.S. Navy, Eric Mills
6. There's More to Life Than This, Theresa Caputo
What do these six titles have in common? They all arrived on my doorstep late last week as part of my ongoing research. I would guess the titles are self-explanatory, although I will comment on two of them. Number Four isn't a patch on how scary things could get in the Oval Office depending on what happens in November, AND Number Six is because I'm a fan. But you all knew that!
Fortunately, Jim has grown accustomed to me acquiring boxes of true ghost stories that arrive at our house more frequently that he would probably like to acknowledge. But hey, stories like that inspire the writer in me and also kick off ideas in my imagination. I never plagiarize: I may get the germ of an idea for a new novel off of one incident in an entire ghost story. And some stories are very common so they are beyond plagiarism; they're just a retelling of a story that everyone already knows (for example, the hitchhiking ghost.) It's in the retelling of a common story that the artistry is revealed.
As it is, I can't wait to dive into my latest collection, but I still have to finish and return my current library books so the new books are waiting in a patient stack where my in-progress reading resides. But I do pick them up and thumb through them occasionally.
When these books arrived, of course the vendor included a list of "You Might Also Be Interested In..." books. Some of them look like possibilities (Ghosts: An Exploration of the Spirit World, from Apparitions to Haunted Places, Paul Roland) while quite a few of them are right out, so to speak (Ouija Answer Book and The Voodoo Hoodoo Spellbook are good examples.) Also, no demon encyclopedias for me! Ghosts alone are just fine, thank you.
This will be a short entry, sorry about that, but I have two writing projects weighing pretty heavily on me right now and I had better get going on them. Deadlines are hard taskmasters, no? But I did want to say that since I enjoy swapping ghost stories with people, if anyone out there would like to suggest book titles that might be fun, please feel free to contact me. My website takes email! I do already have about seven feet or so of shelf-space devoted to books of true ghost stories so if you make a suggestion, I might already have the book. But that would only prove that great minds think alike.
Also, if you would like to know where I find the books I order, email me for the vendor name and I'll be happy to pass that along to you. It's a fun place and I LOVE getting their catalogs probably as much as they LOVE getting my orders.
See you next week - hopefully with ghost story in hand...