The Apparitionist-National Ghost Story Competition
To embrace and honor the heritage of storytelling in Western North Carolina, Tryon Arts & Crafts School (TACS) is initiating this exciting National Ghost Story Competition. Winning stories will be read to an audience on Halloween evening, October 31st, 2017, 7 PM, at TACS, 373 Harmon Field Road, Tryon, NC. Back in July I saw this announcement in a newsletter for writers and realized that a story I had written several years ago to read to my fellow campers at Wildacres Writing Workshop might be just the thing. The guidelines said that the story should include a ghost, spirit, paranormal activity, mysterious circumstance, or a folklore tale that could be perceived as a ghost story. It also said that the winning stories would be selected by Jack Sholder, director of Nightmare on Elm Street II (and many other horror films) who should know from scary. Done. I had just the thing. I spent some time polishing it then sent it in. Lo and behold, on Tuesday I got a call saying that my story had won first place! So I'll be heading to Tryon on Halloween to read "The Bargain" to an audience. As a matter of fact, on this blog post HERE, you can see when I first began the story, some seven years ago. I believe that the story in its entirety will eventually be posted on the Tryon Arts and Crafts School site -- probably after Halloween. I'll let you know when that happens.
If you're on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram, you've surely seen it -- the meme that urges victims of sexual assault and/or harassment to respond by posting "Me Too" in order to highlight the enormity of the problem.
It's been sobering, thousands and thousands of women -- and some men -- who have responded and sometimes shared their stories. One commenter suggested that if a woman didn't say Me Too, she was probably in denial.
Which got me to thinking. . .
I've never been sexually assaulted -- or even sexually harassed, as far as I can remember. I've been very fortunate (or oblivious.) Really, the only incident that stands out is a phone call once (back when we lived in Tampa) from someone who started telling me he wanted to __ __ ___(insert common phrase for oral sex.)
I laughed and said, "____, is that you?" Because John and I had a friend back then who just might have thought that would be a funny thing to say.
The caller was understandably taken aback. "Uh, yeah," he said, "this is ___."
And then I suddenly realized this wasn't our friend and hung up. The phone rang a few times and I ignored it. End of story.
As I said, I've been fortunate. I certainly was aware of discrimination against women and experienced it to some degree in college and as a teacher. And I had friends who suffered sexual assault or harassment.
I think I've always been aware of the possibility, have always had the awareness that It's Not Safe out there. Not fair, not right . . . but, ultimately, not safe.
I hope this Me Too campaign raises awareness and prompts victims to speak out at once against those offenders, as well as those who perpetrate this culture by hushing it up or dismissing bad behavior as "locker room talk" or "boys will be boys." I hope that things will change. Weinstein has resigned from most of his posts of authority. I'd like to see the trend continue.
All images and content are subject to copyright and are the sole property of Vicki Lane Mysteries. If you would like to use something from my blog on your blog or website, please email me and ask first. I'll probably say yes.
I'm the author of The Elizabeth Goodweather Full Circle Farm Appalachian Mysteries from Bantam Dell. The series includes SIGNS IN THE BLOOD (LA MONTAGNE DES SECRETS in France), ART'S BLOOD, (LE SECRET DES APPALACHES in France,) OLD WOUNDS,IN A DARK SEASON (Anthony Nominee, Best PBO), and UNDER THE SKIN. There's also THE DAY OF SMALL THINGS (a spinoff/standalone)chronicling the unexpected life story of Miss Birdie, one of Elizabeth's neighbors.
Currently I have just completed a historical novel, dealing with a massacre in my county during the Civil War.
I came to this weird business late (my first novel was published in 2005) and am still trying to figure it out.
As my novels are set in a place much like my real life home, I thought I'd use this blog to share pictures of our farm and county. I've been blogging for nearly nine years now, on an almost daily basis, and the topics have ranged from writing, chickens, food, books, quilts, flora and fauna of all sorts, to the occasional tiny rant. There's no plan, but there are lots of pictures.
There's more information about me and my books on my web site: http://vickilanemysteries.com/