Sunday, 30 October 2016

Things That Go Bump In The Night
Hallowe'en is upon us and as writers many of us enjoy writing ghost stories. I'm not sure whether I believe in ghosts but I certainly believe that unexplained spooky things can happen to us. Perhaps you've heard noises in the night that you can't explain. Wales has its fair share of haunted places where you can book in for the night. Click HERE for the details about nine haunted hotels and inns. Would you book in to any of these and steel yourself to spend a whole night there?

Baskerville Hall is one of those listed. The building is set in 130 acres of Welsh countryside overlooking the Wye valley on the edge of the Brecon Beacons and Black Mountain National Park. It is reputed to have inspired Arthur Conan Doyle to write his classic Sherlock Holmes story 'The Hound of the Baskervilles' and is known for its ghostly goings on. 

I have only written a few ghost stories. When I was challenged in writing group to write my first one, I found Kath McGurl's 'Ghost Stories and How to Write Them' an invaluable read. In it, she uses twelve of her ghost stories, most of which had been previously published in women's magazines, to form discussions about what makes a successful ghost story.  

Some of my ghost stories appear on Alfie Dog Fiction and if you would like to download them, please click HERE. They are 'The Journey Home', 'Unfinished Business' and 'Rock-a-Bye Baby'. 'Rock-a-Bye Baby' also appears in the Alfie Dog anthology, 'The Day Death Wore Books'.

Later this month, I shall be reading my flash fiction ghost story, 'The Empty Chair' at the launch of Worcester LitFest's anthology 'A Cache of Flashes'. The story is set in an old pub so it will be appropriate that the launch is in 'The Swan With Two Nicks', one of the oldest pubs in Worcester. My other story appearing in this year's anthology is entitled The House Viewing and is also a ghost story. 

Have you written ghost stories? If so, what was your inspiration? What makes you more afraid - sounds, places or feelings that things are not right? 
Thank you for reading my blog. It may be a bit quiet on here throughout November as I attempt to keep up with NaNo deadlines. Good luck to all of you who have registered, too. 

You may also follow me on Twitter @JanBayLit and on my Jan Baynham Writer Facebook page.


  1. Like you I'm not sure that I really believe in ghosts, but do think there are definitely some things we can't quite explain away.

    I really enjoy writing ghost stories.

    1. Yes, Patsy. It's a great way of letting your imagination run away with you. Thanks for your comment. 🙂

  2. Hi Jan - interesting post as ever! As you know, I've written & published a full-length ghost story & recently completed another. I'm pretty sure I do believe in ghosts - I certainly believe in the possibility of them. It's like anything - unless we can prove they don't exist, there's always the likelihood they do.
    I'm not afraid of ghosts - if they do exist I suspect it's because for whatever reason, their human spirits can't rest. Which makes them sad rather than scary.
    The inspiration for the ghost in Ghostbird was the myth of Blodeuwedd; in my new story, I've explored a more traditional, darker, Victorian ghost.
    Good luck with NaNoWriMo! :)

    1. Thanks, Carol. You know how much I loved 'Ghostbird' so I'm really looking forward to the darker ghost in your new story! Thank you for dropping in.