Monday, 31 January 2011

Writing up a spook

Over the weekend I worked on a ghost story for a competition.  It was a story that had been at the back of my mind for a while, but it's amazing what a deadline will do for productivity.  The closing date isn't for about five weeks, but I want it to have time to cook properly.  I already stuffed it full of far more conflict than my original idea - but might I have overdone it?

Magazines and writing sites suggest that entering competitions is a good way to improve your skill and get honest feedback, so hopefully it will be a valuable exercise anyway.  The only problem was,  Steve was away for the weekend, and after writing for a couple of hours after the children had gone to bed, I discovered I couldn't sleep.  I think I'll leave writing spooky stories until I'm not on my own another time!

This should be good news, though, shouldn't it -  I scared myself, therefore the story must have some merit...? Except it's my imagination, so it's no wonder it's vivid for me. The problem is whether I've shared my vision well enough, and empowered anyone else's imagination enough so that they don't want to turn out the light, either.  And, then, I'm the world's biggest wimp.  For instance, I saw a cheap horror when I was about thirteen. In it,  a floury-faced vampire dropped through a skylight in order to drink the blood of some virginal young thing in a flowing white dress.  After twenty years or so, I still check above my head every time I go under my Mum's skylight, even when my white dress is at the dry-cleaners (cough, cough)...So I'm not sure "It scared me!" guarantees that it is scary...

I'm not going to think about it for now, though;  back to the book!

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