Today we welcome Annie Wilder, author of Trucker Ghost Stories: And Other True Tales of Haunted Highways, Weird Encounters, and Legends of the Road, a perfect book for this Halloween season. Like all of us, Annie wonders whether these stories are really true, and maybe you can help answer that question. One commenter will win a copy of Trucker Ghost Stories. I’ll be interviewing Annie sometime soon, so stay tuned for that.
I write true ghost story books, and one of the things I’m most often asked is how I respond to people who don’t believe in ghosts. My answer is that I think people should believe whatever they want, as long as no one gets injured or maimed. So, even though I believe that astral beings (including ghosts, cryptids, and possibly aliens, among others) sometimes collide with our physical world, I never try to convince anyone else of that.
With Trucker Ghost Stories, a new question has come up: could the encounters described in the book be nothing more than hallucinations brought on by sleep deprivation? My answer for those who don’t believe in an astral plane, with all its peculiar inhabitants and possibilities, is “Maybe.” But for everyone else, read on…
In many of these haunted road accounts, there is a clear gateway into the weirdness — and often, it has to do with weather. A cloud that doesn’t act like a cloud, a weird wind blowing in out of nowhere, a heavy fog, blinding rain, a blizzard that seems to warp time… Sometimes, the signs that something ominous is about to happen are more direct — streetlights gone dark, a busy road deserted, a stranger stepping out of the woods.
If someone is driving in the dead of night or behind the wheel for hours on end, it’s likely that, at some point, they’re operating in an alpha or theta state of awareness (rather than beta, the most alert waking state). It’s my belief that being in an altered state, rather than causing people to see things that aren’t there, opens a door to a strange realm that is always there. But in many of these stories, the brush with the bizarre took place in the daytime or when the driver was just running a short errand.
The mostly firsthand accounts in my book are from ordinary people who were scared out of their minds, lost in parallel universes, attacked, chased. Many of the encounters involved multiple witnesses all experiencing the same thing. Some of the story contributors got messages or received information that later turned out to be true. And some of the drivers attribute their haunted road encounter with saving their life.
What do you think? Is there actually something out there, beyond the curve, just over the hill, peering in the driver’s side window? Or are all these things truly just in our heads?
Readers, comment below for your chance to win a copy of Trucker Ghost Stories!