FEAR Author Alane Ferguson on Dragonfly Eyes and Life After Death
April 26th, 2011
Since childhood, I have always been drawn to the paranormal and to one of life's biggest questions: "Where do we go when we die?" My fascination may have stemmed from the fact that I lived close to a cemetery that was adorned year-round with flowers (in those days they were plastic) that I would happily pick them (I was only five) as a gift for my mother, who would then look at me sternly and ask, "Were you in the cemetery again?" (That was how I discovered plastic flowers didn't actually grow from the ground.) And even though I learned to leave the flowers alone, I was always drawn to that quiet, peaceful place. As I walked through the tombstones, reading the dates when a person was born and when they passed away, I'd wonder about them, especially about those who died young. Where were their spirits now that their bodies were in the ground? Did they miss their families? Did they leave this world with regrets? Or were they floating beyond the stars, oblivious of me?
So when I was asked to write a story for FEAR, my mind immediately went back to that fundamental question. I'd been circling around the theme from the scientific side by writing my Sleuth Forensic Mystery Series, which centers on the mysterious world of medical examiners. The Christopher Killer, the first in the series, features a protagonist named Cameryn Mahoney, a seventeen-year-old who wants to give voice to the dead through forensics. But what, I thought, about going into the mind of someone who had actually passed through the veil? What would my character see in those first precious moments?
As I sat thinking, I looked out my window and saw a dragonfly darting about, its blue-green body reflecting light, its wings as clear as glass. I knew the dragonfly had the best vision of any creature on the planet…perhaps, I imagined, like a newly released human soul. The link was made and I began writing Dragonfly Eyes, which I am now developing into a trilogy.
Creating these books has meant research both strange and exciting! I took part in a ghost hunt with Jason and Grant from the SyFy series Ghost Hunters in Colorado's famous Stanley Hotel. During the investigation, they recommended another haunted place, Leap Castle in Ireland. I flew there and found…nothing. My luck changed in South Carolina's Old Sheldon Church, where I took some pictures showing creepy images I can't quite explain. I have so many questions and so few answers! But whether our spirits linger or shoot straight into the Light, I think I've learned something valuable from my time imagining what it is to die. On this side, we must strive to be kind to everyone during our important time on earth, because one day we will all make the journey to the other side. To that end we must love lavishly, forgive graciously, and carpe diem!
Ghostly images captured at Old Sheldon Church in South Carolina.
Find out more about Alane Ferguson and her novels at www.alaneferguson.com.
The International Thriller Writers, a proud supporter of children's literacy, will donate 50% of the royalties from FEAR to Reading Is Fundamental.
Filed under: Guest Blogger
Tags: Alane Ferguson, Dragonfly Eyes, FEAR, Sleuth Forensic Mystery Series, SyFy, The Christopher Killer
104 Comments Add your own
"1. Amanda Burford | April 26th, 2011 at 1:42 pm
I CAN NOT WAIT to read DRAGONFLY EYES. As a high school teacher, I can definitely say that ghosts are a BIG THING! This is something that both adolescents (and us more mature folk) will absolutely devour. It was fascinating to hear how you came up with the title for your story, the release of DRAGONFLY EYES can't come soon enough!
P.S. those pictures are definitely spooky! YIKES!
thanks for being such a wonderful writer, my students love you, as do I
"2. Kate Coursey | April 26th, 2011 at 1:50 pm
I met Alane last summer at a writing conference in Utah, and she really is something special! The Christopher Killer captivated me (although I wasn't previously a fan of forensic mysteries) and the second book in the series was, if possible, even better. I've always been fascinated with the afterlife, and I can't wait to read this trilogy considering all the research Alane has done on the subject matter.
"3. Gloria Joan | April 26th, 2011 at 2:59 pm
I'm a skeptic about life after death, but if anyone can make me consider the possibility, it's author Alane Ferguson. Her writing draws a reader so deeply into the thoughts of her characters that the reader feels part of the drama, and stays inside it long after the final page. Alane is today's best YA author.
"4. Lori Keller | April 26th, 2011 at 4:54 pm
I have read the first 3 books (and am anxiously awaiting the 4th) in Alane's "Sleuth Forensic Mystery Series" and they are AMAZING!! - "The Christopher Killer, The Angel of Death, The Circle of Blood, and The Dying Breath"- I took my class to the Missouri Childrens' Literature Festival and saw her. She is so sweet, and funny, and talented. If you are a fan of CSI - you will love these books, and you will love her
"5. Heather | April 26th, 2011 at 5:33 pm
I loved Alane's Forensic Mystery Series and can't wait to read Dragonfly Eyes! Life after death is such a captivating subject for me and I'm curious to read Alane's perspective on it. Alane Ferguson is an AMAZING author and I recommend her books to all readers!
"6. Steve Caputo | April 26th, 2011 at 8:11 pm
Lanie's premise for Dragonfly Eyes is fascinating. Imagine being able to see things with clarity while we are alive and not clouding them with weighty baggage like fear and anger. I'm looking forward to the day the book is published.
"7. Taylor | April 27th, 2011 at 8:48 am
I'm exttremely thrilled for the Dragon Fly Eyes! Can't wait!! Your writing is incredibly intrigueing. Thanks for being such an inspiration when it comes to your writing.
An inspired high school student,
"8. Laurie Konrad | April 27th, 2011 at 8:52 am
I am very excited about the book Dragonfly Eyes coming out! I can't wait to order it and put it in my middle school library. My students have loved reading the Forensic Mystery books and are also anticipating another installment in the series with Cameron and her job as Assistant Coroner. Alane Ferguson definitely knows how to capture and keep the attention of middle grades to young adult readers.
"9. Nathalie P. | April 27th, 2011 at 8:54 am
I think that Dragonfly Eyes is going to be AMAZING! I love Alanes style of writing and I love The Christopher Killer and I'm so excited to hear that there's going to be more! Keep up the AWESOME writing!
A Very Excited High School Student,
p.s. those pictures are very creepy!!!
"10. Xanobia Hines | April 27th, 2011 at 8:56 am
I can't wait for your next novel! Your ghost pictures are really good! You should get them analyzed to find out what could be lurking in those pictures!
"11. Lynne | April 27th, 2011 at 9:17 am
Looks like the spirits like the guy in the bluish shirt! I am a fan of ghost hunting, and used to do it all the time in college. I can't wait for the new book! I lost a niece to SIDS a couple of years ago, and I always called her dragonfly. So anything to do with the other side and dragonfly is a draw.
"12. Maraya Flores | April 27th, 2011 at 9:17 am
That sounds awsome those pictures areally spooky excpecially that second one, Cant wait to read your book.
"13. brianna | April 27th, 2011 at 9:17 am
i think the topic of ghosts is the most interesting topic now a days because theres so many superstitions and questions about them . the second picture is the one that caught my attention because it looks like a full body of a ghost, and it looks exactly like the boy that its in front of . . . thats a little freaky .
"14. mina iskandar | April 27th, 2011 at 9:20 am
so do you only see the cool stuff in the pictures?
i cant wait to see more pics!!
"15. Kashana Dubuisson | April 27th, 2011 at 9:29 am
i love your pictures.i cant wait to see the next book. your book has so much interesting stuff in your book. to keep your fan waiting for more. you expired me to keep my knowledge open.
"16. anthonialda joseph | April 27th, 2011 at 9:32 am
I love your picture, your very critics. you should publish them. you give me some really good ideas to experience my knowledge. KEEP IT UP!!..
"17. Crystal Pijuan | April 27th, 2011 at 9:38 am
I would love to read your book. Im strongly interested in ghosts story and the facts. I do believe in ghosts and I think they do exist . Im also deeply interested in knowing where do we go after we died. KEEP WRITING ABOUT GHOST!!.
"18. Yanelys D. | April 27th, 2011 at 9:40 am
Omg i cant wait for your novel to come out. I love ghost storiesand i know i will enjoy your book(:
"19. kevin | April 27th, 2011 at 10:07 am
ghost stories are AWSOME!!!! hopefully your new book is going to be just as good as your other books <3
"20. Hunter | April 27th, 2011 at 10:07 am
I'm pumped to read Dragonfly Eyes!! It sounds really interesting and crazy, your forensic series books are excellent and can't wait for this trilogy to come out!
"21. Joel Leon | April 27th, 2011 at 10:11 am
I love what this ghost story is about because ghost stories have always fascinated me. I cannot wait to read your amazing trilogy!
"22. Caleb | April 27th, 2011 at 10:14 am
Wow! Looking forward to reading this book! Sounds really interesting. Cant wait!
"23. Kristoffer K. | April 27th, 2011 at 10:15 am
I cannot wait for this book!! I enjoy all your books and this one will be awesome!!! WOOHOO!!!!!
"24. Stephanie Velez | April 27th, 2011 at 10:16 am
I'm truly on edge every time I speak or hear about Alanes Mystery Series! What happens after death is always in back of our minds whether we like it or not. That is why I can hardly wait for the rest of her work! )
"25. Camila Rohena | April 27th, 2011 at 10:17 am
Alane, your books are awesome! I can't wait to read Dragon Fly Eyes. I know it will be amazing.
"26. Mallory S | April 27th, 2011 at 10:18 am
ive read christopher killer and i realy loved it. Im excited for your ghosts books!!! i strongly believe in them and i know youll grab everyones attention!
"27. Katie B | April 27th, 2011 at 10:21 am
I love your books sooooooooooooooo much. I've always had a fascination with ghosts and paranormal activity. I'm really excited about your new book coming out. its marked on my calendar! <
"28. Catharine W. | April 27th, 2011 at 10:23 am
I loved your book The Christopher Killer!!! I have always wondered about where we go when we die and if there are ghosts. I can't wait to read it! <333
"29. Gabriel R. | April 27th, 2011 at 10:25 am
Holy Moly, I am not going to be able to sleep tonight because of those pictures. But they are awesome, thank you so much for my restless night. I cant wait to read your book.
"30. Ryan W. | April 27th, 2011 at 10:27 am
What a fascinating subject to write about. I think you have an amazing concept in the works and I wish the best of luck in your writing endeavors!
"31. joel iglesias | April 27th, 2011 at 10:47 am
Wow! This looks like a great book. I can't wait to read this series.
"32. Kayla Gruttadauria | April 27th, 2011 at 10:50 am
Alane, I love your idea for this book, i think its going to be amazing. I often do wonder about life after death and forensics really intrests me so i'm excited to read this book.
"33. Grace | April 27th, 2011 at 10:52 am
I love Ghost books, they are legit! I cannot wait to read this book!!
"34. amanda fanfan | April 27th, 2011 at 10:53 am
Wow! This looks like a great book. I really want to read this series
"35. Kyla M | April 27th, 2011 at 10:53 am
This sounds great! I cant wait for the book, im a huge fan of your work!!
"36. Derrick Aldridge | April 27th, 2011 at 10:54 am
Yo this book sounds intense and i cant wait to read it. I hope I dont get scared. LOL
"37. Kyla M | April 27th, 2011 at 10:54 am
This sounds so cool. I cant wait for the book, im a huge fan of your work!!
"38. Matt Naylor | April 27th, 2011 at 10:58 am
This sounds awesome I cannot wait to read this novel ghost are so cool
"39. Justin kreuzpaintner | April 27th, 2011 at 10:58 am
This sounds like an intense book to read. If i read this im sleeping with the lights on for a month!!!!!!!
"40. Matthew Naylor | April 27th, 2011 at 11:03 am
This book sounds great. I cant wait to read the novel because ghosts are so cool.
"41. Maria Vargas | April 27th, 2011 at 11:08 am
OMG!! i love ghosts and this story sounds awesomee!!! I can't wait to read this book!!
"42. Jackie S. | April 27th, 2011 at 11:10 am
I love the title! I think the idea is rather unique and would love to read it when it comes out.
"43. Lillian R. | April 27th, 2011 at 11:11 am
this sounds like an awesome book, I love science ficcion books and being about ghost makes it even better. I can't wait to read it:)
"44. mayra | April 27th, 2011 at 11:51 am
I love paranormal stuff! I always watch ghost hunters. I went to a haunted cemetary once and had some paranormal activity happen to me it was scary but cool!
"45. Ben Duong | April 27th, 2011 at 12:05 pm
Interesting pictures. And Dragonfly Eyes looks really cool.
"46. Ashley Caballero | April 27th, 2011 at 12:07 pm
I've read your other book The Christopher Killer and i thought i was really good, Im looking forward to reading Dragonfly Eyes.
"47. Rebecca Rodriguez | April 27th, 2011 at 12:10 pm
I thought how you came up with Dragonfly Eyes was a really interesting way to turn a small event into a full on story. I have a feeling it'll be an excellent read.
"48. Kierstyn D. | April 27th, 2011 at 12:10 pm
This book sounds amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!! I absolutely love forensics and ghosts. I can't wait to get your book and read it!!!!!!!
"49. Damien Gokool | April 27th, 2011 at 12:12 pm
I find it an interesting story and plot. I would love to read it when it comes out. I find it great to use your childhood experience to write
"50. Garret | April 27th, 2011 at 12:16 pm
This is awesome i cant wait to read it and keep on going with your writing you wonderful soul
"51. Tyler Tuccillo | April 27th, 2011 at 12:17 pm
I'm really excited to read this book! Your style of writing fascinates me.
"52. Hannah Peterson | April 27th, 2011 at 12:19 pm
Wow! this sounds exciting i love paranormal stuff, I can't wait to read it!
"53. Sydney Carcifi | April 27th, 2011 at 12:20 pm
I cant wait for this to come out! I want to read it asap. Awesome idea!:)
"54. Shaina M. | April 27th, 2011 at 12:23 pm
This is a really good idea! I can't wait until I can get it! Mixing foresenic and paranormal ideas is super smart! I love both ideas and they're not done as much! Super excited!
"55. Hunter | April 27th, 2011 at 12:25 pm
Just started reading tour book and i love it and can't wait for your next one.
"56. Christa | April 27th, 2011 at 12:27 pm
Awesome pictures! Looking forward to reading the books, interesting plot.
"57. Issac Elliott | April 27th, 2011 at 12:44 pm
This is an interesting observation about the paranormal activity. I'm glad you have written this because I have wondered such questions. I can picture the dragonfly that is mentioned seeing all these paranormal being. Thank you for writing your story.
"58. Issac Elliott | April 27th, 2011 at 12:45 pm
"59. Tiana Hinson | April 27th, 2011 at 12:49 pm
This book sounds soooo awesome. I can't wait to read it. The ghost pictures are legit
"60. Miguel L | April 27th, 2011 at 12:50 pm
Sweet! Can't wait to read Dragonfly Eyes. I've always liked ghost stories and all that stuff. Hopefully I won't poop my pants.
"61. Brittany Cross | April 27th, 2011 at 12:51 pm
I cannot wait to read your upcoming book. It seems like a mysterious novel that will be scary. The ghost pictures already have me freaked out!!!
"62. Kathryn E. | April 27th, 2011 at 12:51 pm
This book sounds exciting! I would love to read Dragonfly eyes. Ive always been so interested in mysteries and ghosts. The second picture you posted is a bit creepy, but i love it!
"63. Nick L | April 27th, 2011 at 12:51 pm
Wow, this idea sounds awesome. I can't wait to read it.
"64. Stephon, Allah. | April 27th, 2011 at 12:53 pm
This, right here, is pretty nice. I'm somewhat interested in paranormal activities. This blog is helping me understand the creepiness of the super natural realm. Swag.
"65. Emily, B | April 27th, 2011 at 12:54 pm
how exciting! I cant wait to read the book
"66. luwai, M | April 27th, 2011 at 12:55 pm
i dont like to read. but your book seem sweet. #basedgod
"67. jordan,s | April 27th, 2011 at 12:57 pm
im not a big reader but this seems pretty interesting i will deffiantley read this
my teacher is pretty sweet #swag
"68. Natalia Miro | April 27th, 2011 at 12:57 pm
This sounds like such a great read! I cant wait to learn more about this! Keep it up
"69. Hiralee R. | April 27th, 2011 at 12:58 pm
I have read some of your books and the are amazing, cant wait to read this one
"70. Ashley Curlin . | April 27th, 2011 at 1:00 pm
I have been reading your books since 8th grade . and i really like them . i can not wait to read this boook . these are my fave type of book to read . your an amazing write . <3
"71. Natalia Miro | April 27th, 2011 at 1:01 pm
Sounds like such a great read! I cant wait to learn more about it! Keep it up:)
"72. Anthony Santoro | April 27th, 2011 at 1:01 pm
Thanks for sharing your story! I wish you luck in the future.
"73. Estefania | April 27th, 2011 at 1:02 pm
I love it !! I have the christopher killer and loved it I can't wait to see this one the main topic is very engaging
"74. Stephanie Danet | April 27th, 2011 at 1:06 pm
I think this will be , in my opinion, the next "it" book and I would very much want to read it ! I lI've these kinds of books and I can't wait until it comes out so I can read it … Very excited
"75. Alane Ferguson | April 27th, 2011 at 4:47 pm
WOW, everyone, thanks for taking the time to weigh in! It's really fun to see that this post caused such interest, because I'm so committed to writing the Dragonfly Eyes series. Right now I'm finishing up on The Death Academy (still not sure of the title) which will be my 5th installment in forensics. Then it's on to the paranormal!
Thank you again for sharing your enthusiasm over our shared interests in Life After Death. The Reading is Fundamental program is something I truly believe in, and I was and am happy to contribute to them in any and every way. To all of you out there, WRITE ON!
"76. Ann T | April 27th, 2011 at 5:45 pm
This sounds like a great book to read (: i cant wait!
"77. Nicole Morales | April 27th, 2011 at 6:31 pm
Alane! This book sounds like its going to be a hit! keep writing and I cant wait for it to come out! Your sick!
"78. Brittany V. | April 27th, 2011 at 6:44 pm
I don't really enjoy reading but I'm very interested in ghosts so I will definitely be reading your book. I'm so excited!!
"79. TangieH. | April 27th, 2011 at 7:34 pm
Dear Mrs Ferguson,
I am one who is interested in the paranormal shows that give somewhat of a clue what happens to someone's spirit after they pass away, and this book sounds like something I would be interested in reading. I can hardly wait for the book to come out. I do believe ghost are the next big thing (:
"80. Giselle S. | April 27th, 2011 at 8:36 pm
This is so awesome, i can't wait to read the series. your great!
"81. Laura M | April 27th, 2011 at 10:08 pm
I read your first book and i loved it. Im so excited to read this one(
"82. Albanery Pepin | April 28th, 2011 at 8:20 am
This sounds so interesting! Can't wait
"83. Beatriz E | April 28th, 2011 at 8:35 am
Wow ever since i was young i always wanted to become a forensic pathologist (medical examiner) and after reading the christopher killer it made me feel even more excited about the career. after enjoying your other books i know for a fact i would enjoy this one and also i love ghosts so i know for sure im going to enjoy it. Keep on writing!!!!!!
"84. Brittany | April 28th, 2011 at 9:40 am
Your research sounds fascinating! It think it is so great that you try to make the facts in your books as accurate as possible. It provides an element of realism, to something that is otherwise fictional, which I think is important to all literature.
"85. Michelle O | April 28th, 2011 at 10:40 am
Personally I love hearing about ghost stories they give me such a rush and thrill! I plan on reading your stories from beginning to end and maybe sometime in the future asking for your permission to make a movie out of them.
"86. 'arla | April 28th, 2011 at 11:15 am
This book looks amazing!!cant wait to read it )
"87. Emilio | April 28th, 2011 at 12:23 pm
it sounds sso awesome cant wati to read it. GO GHOST POWER!!!!
"88. Alexis gauthier | April 28th, 2011 at 12:58 pm
Fascinating concept. The idea of looking through firefly eyes is ingenious and quite an interesting concept, and I'm exciting to see how you'll embody that. It will really show your writing skills, and you're already awesome. I can't wait to read your interpretation of the paranormal!
"89. Alexis gauthier | April 28th, 2011 at 12:59 pm
… I meant dragonfly (:
"90. Lauren Thliveris | April 28th, 2011 at 1:54 pm
What a fabulous premise for a series, I can't wait to read them! You are a tremendously gifted author, and I have thoroughly enjoyed all your books, starting with 'Show Me the Evidence' - one of my favorites. Your research and intuition on the paranormal are a gift!
"91. bryan h | April 28th, 2011 at 3:53 pm
I cannot wait to read this book. It sounds very good.
"92. Kathy Thompson | April 28th, 2011 at 5:15 pm
As a mother, I can't tell you how much I love your books!! PCK series was my favorite! I can't wait for Dragonfly Eyes!!!!!! Ghost pictures are fantastic!!!! )
"93. Diana Klarissa | April 28th, 2011 at 6:01 pm
It was so amazing to meet you and worked with you. You are an amazing writer, woman, mother, and I am so proud to buy a new copy of Dragonfly Eyes. Will definitely spread the word on this on my Facebook. Love iana
"94. Kathy Thompson | April 28th, 2011 at 6:22 pm
Oops I meant TCK for The Christopher Killer!!!
"95. Goldie A. Edwards | April 28th, 2011 at 6:34 pm
I met you at the Children's Literature Festival in Missouri and learned of your work. When I returned to my job as an 8th grade teacher, I quickly learned that my students knew exactly who you were and what you wrote. We all shared together and I can't wait to direct them to this site for a preview of your new work.
"96. Windy Meiman | April 28th, 2011 at 6:46 pm
Awesome news about the New Series!!!! Alane, your writing is always so imaginative and captivating. I can't wait to see what you come up with for Drangonfly Eyes. We have lots of your books in The Christopher Killer series, and they are always checked out in our Media Center. Our Young Adults love the series, and it is so easy to engage the students in Book-Talks; because they are just as compelled by your stories as I am. Thanks for keeping us spellbound!!!
"97. Wendy miller | April 28th, 2011 at 6:49 pm
Love the forensic mystery series. Having had many friends pass at a very young age, I have been haunted by the same questions Alane is tackling in her quest to understand ghosts. The concept for Dragonfly Eyes is such a provocative story line. Looking forward to it.
"98. RIta Owens | April 28th, 2011 at 7:46 pm
Alana is a terrific writer and more terrific person! Enjoy ALL of her captivating booksA
"99. hajar merfouk | April 28th, 2011 at 9:09 pm
You are one of my favorite authors. I liked your book The Christopher killer and know this story is very interesting keep up the good work
"100. Erin Manser | April 28th, 2011 at 9:57 pm
I am so excited for your new book to come out! It seems so interesting and it's a topic that's very popular among my age group (high school students). I can't wait to read it and I personally find your writing very inspiring
"101. Regis Valdes | April 28th, 2011 at 10:35 pm
This is really interesting!! I felt that you have touched on a very intriguing subject.
"102. Stephanie Vencebi | April 28th, 2011 at 10:42 pm
Omg This Sounds So Good I can't Waiitt !!! Good Luck on it Alane
"103. Ron | April 29th, 2011 at 11:20 am
My daughter said "dad you have to read these books, they are better than CSI." I'm hooked now, the forensics are so much more believable than those TV shows. Please keep them coming.
"104. Jan | April 29th, 2011 at 7:05 pm
These books are sure to be incredible, given the great success of the forensic series and the fantastic approach to "Dragonfly Eyes". I can't wait…