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'21st Century Ghost Stories: Volume II' features tales from all over the world, including Maine

'21st Century Ghost Stories: Volume II' is a collection of short stories that range from hair-raising to thought-provoking.

PORTLAND, Maine — Who doesn't love a good ghost story this time of year? "21st Century Ghost Stories: Volume II" features writers from all around the globe, and their short stories that range from hair-raising to thought-provoking. 

Paul Guernsey is the editor of the book, and said the collection comes from contests that are held throughout the year. 

"All of the stories that are in Volume II and were in Volume I, which came out previously, are stories that have either won or been honorable mentions in one of the two contests that we run internationally several times a year," Guernsey said.

"For full length short stories it's The Ghost Story Supernatural Fiction award. [That's] for stories between 1,500 and 10,000 words," he explained. "Then we have a flash fiction competition, flash fiction being exactly what it sounds like: stories under 1,000 words, very immediate, also called sudden fiction or short-short stories."

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While the stories hail from all over the world, one was written by Maine musician Lara Tupper. 

"The fact that you sometimes will see a full story turned into a song, but it’s a little rarer for a song to be turned into a story," Guernsey said. "And Lara took the Eagles' song 'Hotel California' and used it as the foundation for a delightfully creepy short story called 'The Mission Bell.'"

Credit: 21st Century Ghost Stories, Vol. II
'The Mission Bell'

For the first time, Guernsey said they are featuring a story from a writer whose first language was not English. May Kim grew up in South Korea, and is working on her Master's degree in English literature. 

"I think that the fact that she learned English because she had a passion for it rather than just growing up with it, adds a sort of freshness to her story and I really did love that," Guernsey said about Kim's story, which is called "How to Reinvent Yourself."

Credit: 21st Century Ghost Stories, Vol. II
'How To Reinvent Yourself'

You can read some of the stories online. To order your copy of "21st Century Ghost Stories," click here

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