Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Empty House - Writing the Ghost House

To carry on with the week's earlier theme of writing about the iconic "spooky house", here's another bit of evil house description--this time from Algernon Blackwood. The 'empty house' is, a mediocre hulk of a place, a quietly balanced contradiction from roof to floor: the same as every other house, and yet so terribly different ... Waaa ahh ahhh (evil laugh). BTW, the story itself is pretty chilling if you're looking for a good shiver.

from The Empty House by Algernon Blackwood

There was manifestly nothing in the external appearance of this particular house to bear out the tales of the horror that was said to reign within. It was neither lonely nor unkempt. It stood, crowded into a corner of the square, and looked exactly like the houses on either side of it. It had the same number of windows as its neighbors; the same balcony overlooking the gardens; the same white steps leading up to the heavy black front door; and, in the rear, there was the same narrow strip of green, with neat box borders, running up to the wall that divided it from the backs of the adjoining houses. Apparently, too, the number of chimney pots on the roof was the same; the breadth and angle of the eaves; and even the height of the dirty area railings.

And yet this house in the square, that seemed precisely similar to its fifty ugly neighbours, was as a matter of fact entirely different--horribly different.

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