Several years ago it was a cold November afternoon and I was driving back to Gloucester from Portsmouth, New Hampshire when I stopped in Salisbury Beach to get some coffee. It was a cold, blustery day and, in those days, Salisbury Beach was a bleak, deserted place in the winter. All the summer cottages tucked in the dunes were shut up, the Ferris wheel was stripped of its seats, and the midway was entirely boarded over except for one small coffee shop which was where I stopped. While I was waiting I happened to overhear a conversation (trust me, I wasn't eavesdropping, old men talk LOUD) among 4 old guys who were sitting at a table with their coffee. They were talking about how happy they were that the tourist season was over and speculating about the future plans of someone who had just sold his games arcade and was moving to Florida. They were generally agreed that he would hate it.
Their conversation stayed with me for a long time and I kept thinking about how much fun it would be to write a story set in a town like Salisbury Beach in the off-season. I had started a story about a beautiful woman from a poor family who had married well above her class. Her husband was a college professor and his family was very wealthy. Though she went into the marriage thinking it was going to be thrilling she soon discovered she was way out of her league. Somehow I got the idea to move Layla and her college professor husband to my version of Salisbury Beach (Halcyon Beach) and to introduce a mysterious lover. A ghostly lover. I even got to use my old guys from the diner. The result is Ghosts of a Beach Town in Winter which shoot up to Amazon's Top 10 Best Sellers in Ghost stories and has remained in the Top Twenty on and off since its publication in October 2011.
I love the story because I love Layla who is in a bad situation and knows it. She is really an innocent and the end of the story invites the reader to decide just how innocent she is. I hope you will give it a try.
This blog post is part of the April 2012 A-to-Z Blogging Challenge. Thanks for visiting.