And last year, during our first Halloween Scary Story contest, we learned that our readers not only enjoy a good scare, they like writing about it, too.
Oh sure, we had ghosts, but we also had escaping bullies by becoming one with a book, an airplane ride that went terribly wrong and trick-or-treating that went bad.
All of the 15 stories we included in last October's Lifestyle section had, in some way, sent a tingle or two down our spines.
We had such a great time getting scared that we have brought back the Halloween Story Contest for this season. The deadline will be here before you know it, so start cackling, er, I mean cracking.
This year we are having the contest in three categories — adults (19 and older), teens (13 to 18) and children (12 and younger).
Each winner will receive a certificate, be photographed and interviewed for the paper, and have his or her story published in the paper.
We also will select a grand-prize winner from all categories. That lucky winner will receive $50, along with the same prize as the other categories.
The rules are pretty simple:
- The contest is open to those who live in Washington County; Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan counties in West Virginia; and Franklin and Fulton counties in Pennsylvania. Herald-Mail employees and their families are not eligible.
- Stories must include name (no pen names), city where he or she resides, age and category.
- Stories must be limited to 350 words.
- We will not publish work with graphic sex or violence.
- All work must be signed and state that the work is original and the sole property of the writer. We will accept electronic signatures.
- The deadline is Monday, Oct. 17, at 5 p.m.
- Winners will be notified by Wednesday, Oct. 19, and must be available for a photo by Friday, Oct. 21.
For more information, call me at 301-791-7136 or send an email to email@example.com.
Crystal Schelle is Lifestyle editor of The Herald-Mail.