A little too late I realized that it might be fun to do a daily post of my favorite short ghost stories through October (to honor my favorite month and holiday!).
Last year I shared one of my personal favorite stories, “Smee” by A.M. Burrage.
I will do my best to try and get a few good stories out this October.
I feel like I could probably at least get one good story every week until Halloween!
Many of these stories are ones I first encountered in what I consider to be the definitive book on the subject: The Oxford Book of English Ghost Stories edited by Michael Cox and R.A. Gilbert.
Their introduction is wonderful to read and really provides a fantastic overview of the rich literary history of the ghost story.
As they note in the opening paragraph of their introduction:
“Whatever we do with the dead they will not go away. Whether we entomb and isolate them or scatter their ashes, they remain as ghosts in our memories and faced with their continuing presence we have no option but to learn to live with them. Our most effective way of accommodating them is, perhaps, to encapsulate them in stories, either as the vengeful or grateful dead of folklore, as the dull prosaic phantoms of psychical research, or as the less predictable revenants of fiction.”
Michael Cox and Robert Gilbert, Introduction - The Oxford Book of English Ghost Stories
I am certain to be including other stories from this collection as this particular book has greatly influenced and guided my love of short ghost stories.
This particular story comes from H.G. Wells (he of The Time Machine, The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, and plenty other pieces of fantastic fiction).