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Question: What are the ingredients of a successful ghost story?

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Prose Study Question: What are the ingredients of a successful ghost story? In this essay I will be writing about the ghost story genre. The ghost story is different to other types of story because it gives you a unique feeling at the end of the story. It can frighten you but on the other hand you might enjoy it. It is your perspective. The stories I will be looking at were written in pre 19th Century and were created originally to scare and build intense atmospheres. I will be looking at three short ghost stories and they are The Red Room, The Signal Man and The Old Nurse's Story. The Signalman' was first published in 1865, written by Charles Dickens, The Red Room' by H.G. Wells was published in 1894 and The Old Nurse's Story by Elizabeth Gaskell was published in 1852. These are three stories, which create tense atmospheres. The Signalman and The Old Nurse's Story were written nearly thirty years before the red room. ...read more.


The Old Nurse's Story gives the idea to the readers that life after death is real. Hester and Lord Furnival suggests that dead people are waking up and entering into this world and walking the Earth. This would've spooked readers quite a bit as it the thought of it scared me. All of the stories use their scary settings to give you a little picture in the head and makes you start thinking about what will happen in this story. The Red Room creates fear by using words and phrases that explain the weather or their feeling inside like, "the draughty subterranean passage was chilly and dusty" This line is not scaring the reader straight away but making the reader feel as he was in the story feeling cold in the passage. The Signalman also uses cold to show fear, "so much cold rushed through it that it struck chill to me". It is trying to do the same thing so you can imagine you are feeling cold. ...read more.


"I turned the east comer, and there a black shadow fell on the snow" In The Signalman the tracks are described as having "an earthly deadly smell". The word deadly is very effective and fits in with horror. This hints killings and murder, these are scary things and so this sets the location as being scary as well. So the setting of a story is very important as it starts giving pictures in the readers mind about where it is and what kind of things could happen. So in conclusion I think a successful ghost story should start off with describing the setting with words that connect to fear or just mentioning some specific colours like red or black, that might also work. And then describe the atmosphere by mentioning how the weather is the smell of the place as well. Then start adding the feelings of the characters as something intense happens or is about to happen. And you can end it in a cliff hanger which would play with the readers mind, making them think about what happened. By Zakir Md. Hussain 10TR ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 Zakir Md. Hussain 10TR ...read more.

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