ghost papers“Shiver When the Cold Wind Blows,” a short story, will be included in the new anthology “The Ghost Papers” announced Feb. 15 by Emby Press. This is an eerie tale based on an urban legend about the ghosts of school children killed in a school bus accident. Not like anything I’ve done before. There are 20 other fine stories by some talented writers included in the book as well.

It occurs to me that this story is probably the only story I’ve written that takes place in contemporary times. All of my other published work is set either in the past (the Old West of Mordecai Slate set 100-150 years ago), the ancient prehistoric past (the Tragon and Yusef stories), or hundreds of years in the future (Jack Brand and the This Raygun for Hire series).

It’s kind of weird that I don’t think of myself as a speculative fiction writer. Using the usual definitions I guess that’s where I belong. But definitions are just a way of pigeonholing writers, or any other practitioner of the creative arts. Don’t let the labels fool you. Writers write about life and people. That’s the basic raw material in any story, regardless of genre. The setting, the genre, the background are just props for getting at what the writer wants to say.

But it felt good to write a story about these times and people today. Hope I can write more stories like “Shiver When the Cold Wind Blows.” Watch for it later this Spring.