Activities for Tales of the Haunted Deep
Characters in fiction often struggle until they eventually succeed. Is that what happens in ghost stories? Muriel goes back into the
lighthouse but then what happens? What do the drowned seamen of the Charles Haskell want? Why does the ghost of Blackbeard keep returning
to the same beach? Do these characters ever get what they want? If they found what they are looking for, would the stories end? Write a
ghost story with a mysterious ending.
Look at the words and phrases used to tell the stories in this books. What if the author had used words like beautiful, calm and
happy, instead of words like chills, slimy, icy cold, danger, violent storms, blinding fogs, moans, etc. Make a list of words that would
help set a ghostly mood and then write some of them into your story.
Look at the words used to describe the size of a sea serpent as "nearly as big as the rim of a middling sized tea-cup." These are the
words used to describe the Gloucester sea serpent in 1817. This description is very different from one we might use today. Research old
books and magazines to find words that will help set a historical scene.
Read the chapters called "The Dreaded Pirate Ghosts" and "Swish, Swirl, Sea Serpent!" What is the difference between listing characteristics of
pirates and sea serpents, or introducing them as they are here in dramatic scenes? Both methods require research but the flow of words is
different. Try writing a story both ways.
The best stories often begin with something real. Choose a page from "You Tell the Story" and write up a new tale of the haunted deep.