Monday, August 10, 2009


SPOOKER, n. A writer whose imagination concerns itself with supernatural phenomena, especially in the doings of spooks. One of the most illustrious spookers of our time is Mr. William D. Howells, who introduces a well-credentialed reader to as respectable and mannerly a company of spooks as one could wish to meet. To the terror that invests the chairman of a district school board, the Howells ghost adds something of the mystery enveloping a farmer from another township.

2009 Update: An ordinary fiction writer who, through misguided meddling at a ouija board becomes possessed by the spirit of Dean R. Koontz.


Anonymous said...

How mysterious. The plot thickens.

Mo'a said...

Well it just gets Spooker and Spooker around here.

Jim said...

I'd rather be spooked by the spirit of Truman Capote.

quilly said...

I used to think John Saul was more of a spooker than Koontz. Now I prefer not to feed my nightmares and have no idea who is creepier.

TLP said...

I'm always the spookee.

Stephen King is the spookiest spooker I can think of.

Anonymous said...

H.P. Lovecraft is long-winded.

cooper said...

My love for spookers goes way back, but my favorite spookers are Poe, Joyce Carol Oates, Bradbury and Jack Ketchum....and so on.

King, Saul, and Koontz fit your definition pretty well - I think.

A lot of literature has good horror elements, everyone is capable of writing about the mad and the frightening, and things that go bump.... some just do it better.

Turn of the Screw, Dorian Grey - blah, blah, blah.

I like strange and fear, I'm one sick puppy.

the amoeba said...

Bierce could only have wished that Willam Howells had been invested with the spirit of Dean Koontz. Howells was an exponent of Realism (which Bierce despised, I understand, having publicly preferred (q.v.) Romance), and his "ghost story" does have a lot of highly respectable and mannered people, but no ghost at all. (It is also interminable - see for yourself.)

The Boy from S.A.C.A.D.A. said...

its like ghost writters in the sky - i like ghost storys.

Doug The Una said...

As a good broth should, Anonymous.

As a good blog should, Mo'a.

I'm spooked justhearing about it, Jim.

Quilly, I've never read Saul but Beatrix Potter definitely is.

TLP, I think King's pretty good.

So I've heard, Actonbell.

Anonymous, I just noticed that. I wonder why I never noticed when I was young and read him.

Cooper, I appreciate that. I'm a Poe puppy.

Amoeba, I wondered who Howells was and was about to look him up but decided to wait for you comment instead.

Hey, Indie! Nice pun.

Darth Vader said...

I must convince The Boy from S.A.C.A.D.A. to join the Dark Side!

Ariel the Thief said...

Be careful Darth Vader or you'll easily find yourself on HIS side.

weirsdo said...

Would the shameless plagiarist(s) who cribbed from Wilde's "The Canterville Ghost" to produce BEETLEJUICE qualify?
Bierce's "respectable" spooks put me in mind of Wilde, who met Howells.

Doug The Una said...

Never, Darth! Princess Leia could, though.

Good point, Ariel.

Weirsdo, I saw Beetlejuice before reading The Canterville Ghost, but I had the same impression. Canterville was funnier, too.

weirsdo said...

I'm happy you concur. My boyfriend at the time, a Michael Keaton fan (?!), was offended at my views.