Winter Tales continue through the twelve days of Christmas, until Epiphany, so we have a couple more to go! Our first post-Christmas tale is “A Curious Experience,” by Ellen Wood (1814-1887), editor and owner of Argosy magazine.

Schiele s room in neulengbach 1911 jpg Blog

Johnny Ludlow accompanies his friend John Whitney, and John’s mother, to the seaside spa town of Pumpwater. It’s supposed to be a rest vacation for the sickly John to recover his health. But there’s something not right about John’s beautiful bedroom.

You can read “A Curious Experience” here.

The story is another selection from Ellen Wood’s long running Johnny Ludlow series; I shared a great Johnny Ludlow Halloween tale about two years ago. To quote myself from that blog post:

Johnny Ludlow is the narrator and attributed author of several stories that Wood wrote for the Argosy, starting in 1868; apparently she published anonymously to hide the fact that she was in fact the primary contributor to the magazine that she also edited. She acknowledged her authorship when she began to publish the stories in book form.

“A Curious Experience” first appeared in the Argosy issue for November 1883. It takes place near Easter, rather than in the winter, but the haunting is a bit different from the usual, so I thought it worth sharing here.

Not all of the Johnny Ludlow stories (six volumes’ worth!) are supernatural; some are crime fiction, and others are slice-of-life. But all the tales that I’ve read have been enjoyable, and hopefully I’ll share more in the future.

In the meantime, do enjoy this eerie seaside tale.

A list (with links) of the winter tales I’ve shared in previous years is on my Winter Tales page.

Featured Image: One bedroom, J.M.W. Turner. Source: WikiArt

Schiele’s Room in Neulengbach, Egon Schiele (1911). Source: WikiArt

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