Friday, January 14, 2011

And the Winners Are...

Thank you again, all of you who entered the Authorbuzz book giveaway and sent me your notes, well-wishes, and emails with fascinating ghost stories of your own. Thanks especially for waiting, since I found myself first wrapped up in schoolwork, then needing to finish school work, then rushing to do last-minute Christmassy things for my daughter. I'm coming out of all the fogs now! and hoping to become a better blogger this year -- so stay tuned!

Meanwhile, congratulations! to the 6 winners of a copy of Temporary Lives: Glendel Williams, Virginia Campbell, Mari Rusk, Victoria Guardado, Joan Bendall, and Fran Pyeatt.

Not everyone sent in a ghost story but everyone's names were entered in the drawing anyway. The stories you sent were variously brief or detailed, several intriguing and compelling. Only one librarian sent in her story, and it's a fascinating one (see below). Thank you too, those of you who entered but unfortunately didn't win a copy--I would love to be able to send you all copies, I wish I could afford to! I do hope it won't stop you from getting a copy of Temporary Lives in some other fashion, maybe from your library, and reading it anyway!

With their prior permission, I post the winners' stories below--enjoy!

"When I was about ten years old, I woke up one night and saw this pretty woman standing by my bed, smiling down at me.  I looked at her and noticed that I could see the wall through her body.  I saw that she had a blue dress on, but it was transparent, too.  I felt no fear, no animosity.  She was smiling kindly.  I just turned over then and went back to sleep.  The next morning, I described this lady to my mom and she said it  must have been my aunt, her sister, who had been shot in a hunting accident a few months before I was born.   The woman's dress and hair that I described were exactly the same as my aunt's when she was buried.  I never saw the lady again."-- Glendel Williams, Parsons, KS

"I have lived in the same house for over 30 years. My mother and I owned the house together. She passed away several years ago. I have had many paranormal experiences in my home, both before and after my mother passed away. The first experience was to glance over at a living room window late one night and see the "Scream" face looking in! I rushed to the door and turned on the front porch light, and not a "soul" was about! Another time, on Halloween night, I heard distinct footsteps on the wooden floor of the upstairs hallway. My mother and I were both downstairs and no other "human" was in the house. One night, I went upstairs to my room without turning on the stairway light. When I got to the doorway of my room, a large misty shape moved from the area of the doorway and went across the room and out the window. One bright Sunday morning, I had overslept, which is a rare occurrence. A voice from the doorway of my room said: "Are you getting up?". I looked over through sleep-filled eyes and saw the blurred image of a large friendly blonde woman dressed in red and royal blue. I answered, and then realized it wasn't my mother! The "woman" was twice the size of my mother (who was actually downstairs in the kitchen). Since my mother passed away, I have noticed unusual scents in the house. I have smelled my grandfather's pipe tobacco, my grandmother's lily of the valley, and my mother's fingernail polish remover. All of these people are deceased, and none of those items are in the house! The time that I was the most afraid was when I came home to find my house almost in a vacuum state. There seemed to be no air, no sound, and no smell of any kind in the house. My cats were in hiding. I don't know what had been in the house, but it had some kind of mojo!" -- Virginia Campbell, Clifton Forge, VA

"I've had several types of questionable experiences with something present.
My neighbor's house was for sale and they were selling his furnishings.  I didn’t know anything about why his house was for sale, but I definitely felt " a presence".  I had met him a couple of times.  But I was amazed that everything in his house was for sale.  I asked the person representing the house why "ALL" his stuff was for sale?? She said he had died, and I immediately knew he died at home.  I could feel his presence!  I felt so sad the whole time we were in there, I couldn't explain it. Then I learned he had committed suicide, probably from insulin, because he was losing his eyesight.  He was very high up in his company and lived alone.  I felt even more sad that I hadn't known and could have offered some assistance. Would it have made a difference?

Another time, I work in a hospital, and at night--my co-worker and I heard all this furniture moving upstairs.  We knew they were remodeling the floor above us, but NOT AT NIGHT!  We had Security go up there, but no one was there!" -- Mari Rusk, Maple Grove, MN

"My 17-year-old son Manuel was shot and killed 12 days before Christmas 1998.  3 months later, I was sitting on the couch and all of the windows were closed in my apartment. All of a sudden, a breeze that smelled of my son rushed past me and I knew that he had come to visit me." --Victoria Guardado, Anaheim, CA

"I work as a librarian at the Sullivan County Library system in Tennessee.  At one point, I was the assistant librarian at our Bloomingdale branch in Kingsport, TN.  Our head librarian there worked at the branch for well over 20 years and besides church, it was pretty much the whole focus of her life (she was not married and had no children).  While I worked with her, she developed a brain tumor and passed away.  After her death, there were several instances, when I am sure that I saw her ghost at the library.  One time I was standing before the bathroom mirror washing my hands and I saw just a glance of her in the mirror as she passed behind me.  Another time I could swear I saw her sitting in her chair behind the checkout counter.  Our cleaning lady was sure that her ghost was knocking books off the shelf while she cleaned.  Another time, I was in the bathroom and I sensed her presence, so I just said out loud, "Janice, just let me go to the bathroom in peace!"  After I spoke, I sensed that she left the room." -- Fran Pyeatt, Kingsport, TN