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Written by Kevin Lucia

Lots of things influence my writing, but probably one of the biggest is simply the world around me. I love looking at people, places, and things, and then jotting ideas down in a notebook to be filed away for future story fodder. People I see on the street, odd things I come across in my walks in the woods, and especially abandoned places. I LOVE scouting out abandoned places and turning over in my head how I could use those in stories. Here are the top five abandoned places which have directly influenced my writing.

school 01

An Abandoned Elementry School

There's an abandoned elementary school I've driven by for years, and, several summers ago, I finally gave into temptation and stopped to check it out. It was incredibly haunting; walking through a building which once saw hundreds of children running through its halls. It directly inspired a coming-of-age ghost story, a novella I wrote called A Night at Old Webb, and I'm sure I have more stories to write about this place.

school 02 school 03

basketball camp 01

An Abandoned Basketball Camp

Before writing, basketball was my love. I played in high school and college. I spent my summers at a local basketball camp, from 8th grade through my junior year of college. Recently, I stopped by on a whim, and found the whole place abandoned. It looked like people had just walked out in the middle of what they were doing. It directly inspired my novella, Long Night in the Valley, which is in my upcoming release, October Nights. I'm sure I'll write more about this particular spot.

basketball camp 02 basketball camp 03

ampitheater 01

An Abandoned Amphitheater

I was shocked to discover an abandoned stage and amphitheater on a hill behind our local zoo. Apparently, it was ruined during one of our many floods over the past ten years. I'd never known it was there. Anyway, there's something forlorn about it. I've always wanted to write a story about it being haunted by a girl who sings on Halloween, but I haven't, quite yet.

ampitheater 02 ampitheater 03

An Abandoned Building

In the Adirondacks, between White Lake and Old Forge, there's an abandoned building of some sort alongside Black River. I don't know what it is. An old factory or something. I can only imagine strange, eldritch horrors that led to its demise. Unfortunately, I never got a good picture of it.

devil house 01

An Abandoned Victorian Farmhouse in Cooperstown, NY

This is where my love of horror began. I was 23 and thought I wanted to write science fiction. Until my best friend told me about the "devil house" up the road from his grandmother's cabin-on-the-lake in Cooperstown, NY. We went and explored it, and found many....strange occult remnants inside. I detailed the story years in Flames Rising. In any case, the mystery surrounding this house convinced me I wanted to write horror. The first story I sold was about this house. This was back in college, and all I had was a cheap disposable camera, and these are the only pictures I have (I'm the impossibly young fellow in the red shirt.). I went to revisit the house recently and found it had been demolished.

devil house 02

Horror DNA would like to thank Kevin for sharing this piece with us. Make sure you pick up a copy of his latest book, October Nights, by clicking on one of the links below. As of this writing, there is a pre-order special of just $0.99 for the Kindle version.

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