on Halloween night
or simply sitting around the campfire, telling ghost stories is an age-old tradition. The
idea of course is to tell a story that frightens the listeners in a fun,
frightening and entertaining way.
short stories center around
some sort of supernatural or malevolent occurrence
or creature such as a haunted house, ghosts, vampires,
monsters, crazed killers and the like. And while
most ghost stories are pure fiction or urban legends that
may or may not have any truth to them, some are the real
thing, or at least have some shred of truth to them.
To be good at
telling ghost stories you need to keep several things in
tell a known ghost story, adapt one to your needs or
create a completely original story, it
should be believable and
able to hold the interest of its listeners.
aspects of the story in enough detail so that they
can visualize the events taking place, but not so much as to
slow down the flow of the story.
stories are usually told as a though is were a
historical event or sometimes as something that is
currently taking place. Provide a basic setting that
includes the time period of the event, the location
where it happened, any fabricated historical facts.
little research and find stories that are fairly short
plenty of real or at least possibly real "scary" stories
and urban legends out there that you can use. Some would
be the "Haunted Railroad Tracks" in San Antonio, Texas,
or the "Mothman" of Point Pleasant, West Virginia, or
the "Chupacabra" along the American-Mexican boarder and
local "Big Foot", sightings, which are always good for a
Halloween Ghost Stories
website has a great collection of ghost stories!
story that center around a place it should contain vivid
details so that listeners can visualize it in their
minds and possibly relate to a place they've been to or
know about. Stories that revolve around a person or
group of people should have characters that are
believable. Make the characters real by giving some
information about them. Don't do this all at once, but
over the course of the story.
Adapt the stories as needed, but most
importantly, learn the story by heart. If you sound like you
yourself believe the story to be true, everyone else will.
If you sound like you are making it up as you go along,
no one will believe you.
If a story is
to long or doesn't get to a scary fairly soon, your
listeners will get restless and then bored.
a scary story doesn't have to be gruesome to
frighten people. While many of these stories are bloody and
horrific, others are simply creepy and shocking. If one or more
people become very scared, tone down the story. If young children are present, keep the
stories more on the light hearted side and not too scary. Needless to say, you shouldn't tell extremely scary stories to young children.
A fun game, particularly at a
Halloween party where there is a group of
people, is for each person to take three minutes to tell part
of a story, and then the next person has three minutes to
add on to it, and so on.
Below is an
anatomy of a very short ghost story. The text in black is the actual story
and the text in red are suggestions and explanations of the elements.
from the Grave"
back in the eighties, there was this elderly lady name Mrs.
Bradley, who lived over on Jackson street, that's the street on the
other side of Riverside cemetery.
By saying when it took place, you set a time to the tale.
Find out the name of the street next
over from your local cemetery and use it. Add the cemetery
name in as well. This will add known
locations to the story.
Well, her husband,
John I think his name was, had passed away the week before,
but on his death-bed, he had told her that he needed to tell
her something very important, something that she really
needed to know. It was 8:30pm and visiting hours were
ending, so she told him he should just rest, and she went
home without finding out what he wanted to tell her.
This will tie-in in to the story
night, there was terrible storm, lots of thunder
and lightning. Worst storm we'd had in years! John passed
away that night and Mrs. Bradley never did get to hear what
he wanted to tell her. Most people get a little spooked
during a storm, this adds an element of scariness to the
later, there was a funeral for John, half the town went.
Everyone liked that old guy! Mrs. Bradley kept thinking
about how bad she felt that he never got to tell her what he
had wanted to.
another bad storm that night, the kind that knocks out
electricity and phones, really bad! At 9:33pm that night her
phone rang. She answered the phone but she could only hear moaning on
the other end. Even though no words were spoken, she said
that it had sounded just like her husband. This lasted for a
few minutes, then the line went dead. She said she got at
least four calls like that during the night.
The next day,
she tried to call her neighbor, Mrs. Jones, you've heard of
her, if she would drive her to the cemetery
so she could place flowers on her husbands grave but the
phone lines were still out.. So she she walked next door and
Adding in another person with a known name to the people
listening to the story gives credence to what they
approached, they saw several utility men working near the
grave. Mrs. Bradley asked what they were doing, they
told her that during the storm, a telephone line had fallen
down and was laying across this grave. She looked at the
headstone they pointed to and saw that it was her dead husbands grave!
Adding in another person gives credence to what they
phone calls she had received the night before made from
beyond the grave by her dead husband, trying to tell her
what he wanted to before he died?