Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Ghost Story: Smee, by A.M. Burrage

Alfred McLelland Burrage was born in 1889 and died in 1956. His father and uncle were both successful authors, and he also proved to be adept at writing, publishing his first story at the age of 15.

For most of his life he lived in London and was a prolific author of short fiction for magazines, mainly superlative ghost stories along with more predictable romances. In early 1917 he joined the Artists Rifles (28th Battalion, London Regiment) and served until he was evacuated due to trench foot in April 1918.

He was one of the few (perhaps the only?) professional writers to have served, survived, and published his experiences as a private soldier. In 1930, War Is War (E. P. Dutton & Co. Inc., New York, 288p.) appeared under the pseudonym "Ex-Private X", the Foreword saying that "were it otherwise I could not tell the truth about myself and others".

Now listen to one of his ghost stories, Smee.

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