"A face in the mirror... Howling in the night... A Black Dog at your door... Cold hands dragging you down..."
I've never published a short story before, and I don't believe in ghosts, but when those nice people at Andersen Press asked if I'd like to contribute a story to their new anthology HAUNTED I thought I ought to give it a go. I came up with a tale called The Ghost Wood, about a boy on holiday in a place very like Dartmoor, who brings home a stone from a wood very like Wistman's Wood; a place which is supposed to be haunted by the spectre of a dreadful black hound... It's not meant to be too scary (as I hated being scared when I was a child and don't really want to terrify today's children) but I hope spooky, and full of the feel of woods and autumn. It's the first time I've used the out-and-out supernatural in a serious story, but it won't be the last. It's also the first time I've used present-day Dartmoor in any of my fiction (although bits of Here Lies Arthur were set on the Moor, at least in my mind's eye).
There are lots of other stories in haunted too, by some great writers: Susan Cooper, Joseph Delaney, Berlie Doherty, Jamila Gavin, Matt Haig, Robin Jarvis, Derek Landy, Sam Llewellyn, Mal Peet and Eleanor Updale (and I expect some of them just love terrifying today's children). For a good spine-chilling read now that the nights are drawing in and Hallowe'en is approaching, look no further!
Haunted is available from all good bookshops, and on the Andersen Press Website.