Bestselling Author Delilah Devlin
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Ane Ryan Walker: A Ghost Story
Sunday, January 29th, 2017

It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things.
― Theodore Roosevelt

So I am beginning to ask myself if Indie publishing is a better thing. I am not sure.

I have been writing for a long time. I do have a distinctive voice, and I read across many genres. Fortunately, both of my parents were avid readers and I could read long before I went to school. This kind of thing can really turn you off to education, but I was fortunate, that is not what happened to me.

My Dad used to let me read the newspapers with him, every day. Moreover, I still have an order for reading the newspaper: Horoscope first, comics second, and then the news. My Dad used to tell me, it is a good thing to have a positive outlook, (horoscope first) try to never lose your sense of humor, (comics second) and finally yet importantly, be informed (news).

This might not seem like great advice to give a four year old who is not yet in school, but it was not only great advice, but it served me well most of my adult life. I still read every day, and still read the newspaper in that order.

People often ask me what influences my stories. Those folks who know me well understand I grew up in a large family, in an old Victorian house with an odd reputation. People in my hometown believed it was haunted.

Truth be told, it was.

When my family acquired the house, I was given the back bedroom on the second floor. The house still had gaslights in each room although these lights had not been in use for many years. You see, the house sat vacant for a number of years, and that is probably why people believed it to be haunted.

I did not think much about it at the time, until one night I woke up to the sound of someone opening the door to my room. There was a full moon, and the light streaming in my window allowed the average person to read a newspaper. I knew this because I read every night. Moreover, earlier I used the moonlight to exceed my reading time.

So the knob rattled and turned and a man, youngish—about in his early thirties, stuck his head in the door and surveyed the room. He moved into the room from the hall, and took off his jacket, which he hung in the closet. He closed the closet door, walked past my bed to the window opposite me, and opened it wide. He then climbed out the window and was gone.

The first night I screamed bloody murder, but my mother did not believe me. She said I was dreaming. This happened often over the next few months and finally, I started to pay more attention to the ghostly images.

You see, the room would change with the nightly apparition. Once the visitor finished his trip across my room, things returned to normal. One night my best friend spent the night, and she witnessed what I’d been seeing for several months. Only this time, when the room returned to “normal” the window remained open. I also had a witness.

Keep in mind, as a young girl, I was not likely to share a story my parents told me would make me seem crazy to my friends. But, now . . . my best friend knew exactly what was happening.

Those early encounters, better explained by my Irish grandfather, became more of an adventure than frightening encounters. They happened on and off through the years of adolescence. None was truly frightening or hostile, but when people do not believe you or make you think you are crazy. Well, that is just wrong.

Highly likely you will encounter ghosts in many of my stories. I know how ghosts can catch you off guard, and sometimes frighten you when they only mean to help. Look for ghosts in my next book, The Covenant, about a white witch fresh from college with a brand-new MBA who returns home to revive the family business and learns secrets that may destroy her future.

Better yet, read the two free short stories on my website, http://www.aneryanwalker.com

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