The Line Between Spooky and Scary with Diana Corbitt
First of all, we have to know: are you a fan of Halloween?
I loved Halloween when I was a kid. Right now, not so much. I’ll watch scary movies, but we just don’t have many trick-or-treaters, so it’s a bit of a drag. Last year I bought the regular-sized candies, and the handful of kids we did get were totally thrilled. A couple even exchanged costumes and came back again.
What was it that inspired you to start writing the Ghosters Series?
I’ve always liked scary stuff. Movies, books. Steven King is my favorite author. I decided I’d try and write a book he might write if he suddenly became a children’s author.
Are you a fan of ghost stories yourself?
Very much. I watch all the shows. Ghost Adventures. Ghost Hunters. Shows that aren’t on anymore.
When you were writing your own ghost series, Ghosters, was there any one thing that you absolutely had to include in the story?
I wanted to have unique characters. That’s why I created Joey. He’s got autism, and not a lot of people know much about that.
What was the biggest struggle you had writing a middle grade story about ghosts?
Not having seen one myself, I have to rely on TV shows and what other people have told me. I definitely believe in them. The stories I’ve heard are from reliable people. Folks I trust.
One of the things I loved about Ghosters was the fact that it was spooky without being too scary. When you were writing, was there anything you did to keep that balance well maintained?
Before I started, I read quite a few other books aimed at that grade level to get me into it. Betty Wren Wright. Mary Downing Hahn. I also had some in my 5th grade classroom, so it was easy to ask kids who’d read them which books they liked best and why.
Diana Corbitt is the author of several books for middle grade readers including the Ghosters Series.