Living With Our Ghosts

I have published a story in the anthology “Haunted Tales” by Samie Sands at:

It is a compilation of supernatural stories about encounters with the unknown “ghosts” in our world. While we shiver and spook over tales about the unseen and unnatural; we forget to live with our ghosts. Many times, ghosts are simply memories: energies that we remember tied to objects or places, not actual entities working maliciously in their own will against humankind. The living are catalysts for these “memories” that are in fact not embodied spirits of an ethereal nature. There are some instances for believing actual spirits of humans are “trapped” tied to the Earth in some ways and some churches believe that this could be part of a “purgatorial” divine decision. In the real world, I believe we pay too much attention to our “ghosts”. God has reasons that the spiritual realm is composed of differing answers. We should not be afraid of our “ghosts” and we should not deny there are such things. On the other hand, our concern is with the living and life as we are created to live it, and while our “ghosts” may touch our lives, perhaps we should just find acceptance in us of these answers when they occur and give them less importance in our daily living. This does not mean that we should deny our memories or refuse supernatural encounters that do occur in life with a stubbornness that does not admit that they have a reality on the planet.

Scientific inquiry has tried to quantify, control, and understand such phenomena. Unfortunately, this was never meant- in my opinion- to be the provenance of the dominion of man. A book falls off the shelf with no prompting and a scientist will discover why. I feel the best approach is to replace the book back to the shelf and not worry so much about it. It concerns me that we have not learned to accept the world without over analyzing and questioning. Not that analysis and questioning are not valid pursuits with a purpose, but that we have decided not to live with the world created. To better the situation of mankind, we seek answers to solve our problems. This is a good thing, but we create problems as well.

As a fiction writer, I find that elements of life are reflected in fiction and that “ghosts” (regardless of explanation) are part of life. Some critics have said that fiction writing is to no purpose other than children who wish to pretend. I disagree. Fiction opens up ideas for thought, communication about these ideas, and a way to explore “other” in life without having to walk through the actual events and consequences. Ghost stories are no different. I believe, in fiction, that such stories bear consideration. We should not be afraid of the ideas on the printed page, although we scare ourselves. On the other hand, the living need the living, and the dead are the dead.





“Haunted Tales” by Samie Sands

“Haunted Tales” by Samie Sands
I have had an opportunity to participate in an anthology by Samie Sands titled “Haunted Tales”. Find “Upside the Down Elevator” and other spine tingling contributions at:

You can read up on my interview at:

The Price of Learning

I was a non-traditional student that went back to college at thirty-five years of age after a divorce as an adult. In the middle of financial hardships and social devastation due to my situation, I needed a new direction and a way to improve my outlook. While working a full time job, I searched for a program that would cater to adult students and not put me back on a campus with teenagers. Not only did I find the program I needed, I graduated in May of 2009 with a BS in Business Management- a degree I had given up on when life had too much promise and too many possibilities for me to maintain an education mindset. I am glad I finished my degree. I would not recommend this path to younger students. I found out the hard way that the easy way is to obtain your education while you are younger.

I will never obtain an advanced degree. At almost forty-five years of age I have a mortgage payment, a household to run on my own, and ten years under my belt in a career as a Technical Writer. While experience counts, I have had to pay the price of learning without going through the ivy covered halls most of my life. The average cost of a basic college degree in 2014-2015 according to U.S. News is $31,381 USD. That cost does not include further schooling for advanced degrees. Still funding student loans from my partial education in my teenage years and early twenties, I cannot afford the difference in the time it would take to earn the advanced degree, the monetary investment necessary, and the cost of my wages that will be needed for retirement diverted to further my studies.

When I was nineteen, I wanted to be in the performing arts and I was studying psychology and business in college. The world was a grand adventure. By the time I was twenty-five I discovered I was not cut out for acting or performance and that going back to school was next to impossible. I did not pursue education in my youth. Because of this, my education cost more and furthered my answers in life less.

I would ask younger students to respect this: there is no substitute for education and experience is a hard teacher. I do not believe that experience does not teach knowledge and lessons worth learning. I do believe that education increases knowledge and skills and prepares people for experience. “Success is where preparation and opportunity meet.” (quoted from Bobby Unser). In a world where the prices for learning are never cheap, it is necessary for us to realize that we will all eventually grow in knowledge and wisdom. There are simply better and easier educational paths to take to the holy grail of understanding and these ways should not be abandoned- if they are, believe me, we return to them later and I, for one, regret the time lost along the way.