Why I Wrote Ghost!Story

Every story I write has roots that go back to my past. Conspiracy of Echoes goes all the way back to my childhood fascination with ghosts.

And we can all blame my middle brother.

See, I used to have a wooden clown toy on my bedroom door. I say clown. It didn't have a face or anything specifically clownish about it. It was just a collection of wooden blocks shaped in a way that resembled a clown. Anyway, this thing used to move - by itself as far as my child's brain was concerned.

By ghosts, if my middle brother was to be believed.

(I'm betting right now if I asked him if he recalled this, he'd say "I never did that!")

He (VERY UNWITTINGLY) triggered a pretty intense phase of my life when I was convinced everything was a ghost. That weird creaking from under the floorboards? Ghost. Things falling over? Ghost. Sudden chills in the middle of summer? GHOST! I convinced myself my junior school was haunted. My cousin and I even set up a ghost finding club.

Pictured: our actual reaction to everything slightly strange

Although the intensity of my obsession eventually faded, the ideas never did. And as I grew older and studied Gothic literature, attending a school complete with its own ghostly nun legend, watched shows like The X-Files and Supernatural, and generally enjoyed a good ghost story, the seeds of my own books were sewn. And although I dabbled with scary stories, I never really committed to one until December last year.

What was the final trigger? Uncharted 3. Specifically the abandoned French chateau. That whole level just stuck with me because it's fun, it's beautiful, and I really like abandoned buildings. Before I knew it, Ghost!Story was poking at me and wouldn't be ignored. It was like the game finally brought together all the different parts of my life that had a fascination with ghosts and this story emerged at long, long last. I abandoned MagicalGirl!Story mid-edit and let the new idea take over. And here I am six months later with the first book querying, the second one awaiting revisions and the WiP third one sitting at just over 30k.

If you've had an idea that's been bubbling in your brain since childhood, see where it takes you now. And if the idea isn't quite ready yet, give it time. You never know what might finally get you going.


  1. <3 Keep on being inspiring! All your Conspiracy of Echoes joy is so empowering to read.

  2. I find those ideas that keep coming back often turn out to be the most fun to write! (That might be why I keep plagiarising my own old discarded manuscripts. :P)

    I went through a ghost phase, too, though mostly because my bedroom's in the attic, so it's really dark and full of creepy shadows. I think Child Emma was terrified of EVERYTHING at some point. :P

    I'd like to go back to YA paranormal someday. I did enjoy exploring sinister old houses and graveyards in the Darkworld series. :D

    1. I like to dip back into old books and see what can be reused. Comes in quite handy ;)

      Paranormal is waaaaay more fun than I ever expected :)


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