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Oh Whistle and I’ll Come to You…

MR James (1862-1936) is widely acknowledged as the master of the English ghost story. His tales of the macabre are not of the in-your-face, blood, guts and gore variety (although he didn’t write exclusively about creeping spirits and ancient revenants – his stories are, in fact, laced with demons and horrors of a more visceral nature). James has been a big influence on my work. I love the subtlety of his storytelling and the sheer weight of history and antiquity with which he dusts his tales.

For one week you can hear me read a brief, abridged extract from one of James’ most famous ghost stories, ‘Oh Whistle and I’ll Come to You.’ All you have to do is follow this link and click ten minutes into the programme.

You can also hear me talk briefly about how I got into writing and the HALLOWEEN STORIES BY CANDLELIGHT event which will be taking place on Thursday 25th October at Skegness Library. The reading is a little rushed as I had to get it all in before the traffic report! If you are intrigued by what you’ve heard I would thoroughly recommend picking up one of MR James’ collections. Details about the author can be found here.

The picture, by the way, comes from the BBC’s adaptation of ‘Oh Whistle’, starring Michael Hordern as the crusty, fussy Professor Parkins – a man haunted by the thing in the empty bed… Details of that wonderful interpretation can be found here

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