Guest-Krista Davis

Jessie: In New Hampshire where we’ve finally turned on the furnace.

I have had the pleasure of spending time with Krista several times in real life over the years and am delighted to have the chance to visit with her on the blog today! Welcome, Krista!

Some years ago, I had an appointment on October 31st with a doctor whom I had never met. She was wearing a blue gingham dress with sequined red shoes. I liked her immediately. She explained her outfit, even though I knew she was Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. Had it been November 1st, I might have wondered about her, but Halloween gives us license to be silly, even when we’re adults. No wonder most of us like Halloween.

It’s almost Halloween in Murder Outside the Lines. Florrie Fox runs a bookstore and draws adult coloring books in her spare time. When strange things begin to happen, Florrie isn’t certain whether they’re real or Halloween pranks.

One of the things I particularly enjoy about writing this series are the secondary characters who are former professors. They often share oddball historical tidbits (Did you know that Abraham Lincoln allegedly opened his son’s casket and held him again after he was interred?) and they quibble about such things as whether or not ghosts are real.

Like Florrie’s parents, my parents were very matter-of-fact about ghosts. They were fun, but there was no such thing. But then, after my grandfather died, my mother had a strange experience that she believes was him. My brother and I have seen our deceased father in the same place, doing the same thing, but at different times. That’s getting a little creepy. Of course, a lot of sightings can be explained away due to grief or because our brains fill in things that they think should be there.

I have done a bit of research on the subject of ghosts. For the record, most scientists poo-poo the notion. However, The University of Virginia actually has a department called the Division of Perceptual Studies. What do they study? Consciousness after death. No kidding! They don’t say life after death, but that’s what they mean by consciousness.

The most interesting part of the work they have done is with children whose distraught parents call to say their child claims to have been someone else. Sometimes the children even provide enough information for them to identify the deceased person whom they claim to be. It doesn’t always work out that way, but even once is surprising to me! It’s very difficult to explain how a four-year-old could come up with names, recognize buildings, or know how that person died. Even more strange, sometimes the children have birthmarks that correspond with injuries from a violent death. Usually, the parents have never heard of the person, so the kids aren’t picking up the information from them. If you’re curious about this, check out  or go straight to this interesting video . Some of their panel discussions on YouTube with host John Cleese are amazing.

Ghosts aren’t the main problem in Murder Outside the Lines, though there is a problematic skull named Harry in the book. It begins with a psychic author who thinks she saw a foot in a rolled-up rug. But no one else can find it. Is she pulling a fast one for publicity? Is she having a premonition? Or was there a foot in a rug that was moved before the police could check on it?

The Pen & Ink Mysteries all have covers that can be colored! You can make the cover your own! If you are one of those people who cannot write or draw on a book, then you can download a cover at  .

Click on the word MEDIA for the link. Ordinary colored pencils work very well on the cover, as do alcohol-based pens. If you want to use water-based pens, then download the cover on paper that will work with them.

Readers, what do you think? Is there consciousness after death? Have you encountered a ghost?

New York Times Bestselling author Krista Davis writes the Domestic Diva Mystery series, the Paws & Claws Mystery series, and The Pen & Ink Mysteries, which have covers that can be colored. Look for the fourth Pen & Ink book, MURDER OUTSIDE THE LINES, in bookstores on September 28th. Krista lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia with two dogs, two cats, and a hidden stash of chocolate.

48 Thoughts

  1. Ooh, Krista, you gave me shivers! I can’t wait to read the new book. I expect there is some kind of consciousness after death but wouldn’t be able to pin it down in the slightest. A visiting friend saw a ghost in our guest room one night, but I never have.

      1. My friend Bonnie woke up in the middle of the night and saw a woman in an old-fashioned white dress or nightgown standing at the foot of the bed. Nothing happened, Bonnie blinked, and the woman went away. Gives me the shivers to even write this!

    1. Oh, Edith! How old is your house? Could she have been a previous resident?

  2. When my mom passed 10 years ago, my son and his wife were expecting their first child. Would have been my mom’s first great-granddaughter. We kept telling her she needed to stay with us to meet her but the cancer just wouldn’t let her. After Maddie was born my son brought her over to visit my dad. My niece was over and she took a picture of my dad holding Maddie and when she looked at the pic later, it showed my mom standing behind my dad looking down at Maddie. She still has the picture.

    My dad comes to me in my dreams. What he has to say to me isn’t what I want to hear. I always remember those dreams.

  3. As a Catholic, I do believe in life, or as you put it “consciousness,” although I don’t know what that will look like.

    A lot of people think the Catholic Church disdains things like “ghosts” or the supernatural, but that isn’t true. They are, however, cautious and warn people not to take it lightly with so-called games like Ouija boards because it is messing with forces that are often time beyond human control or understanding.

    1. Liz, every night when I take the dogs out, I look up at the moon and the stars. I can’t help wondering what else is out there and thinking about how much we don’t know. It seems impossible that a game could conjure anything, but there have been tests where groups of people have been able to lift a table by concentrating on it. These things are inexplicable.

    1. Whew! WordPress has been toying with me! Thanks for inviting me, Sherry! I always feel guilty when I color one of my covers. It’s relaxing and fun! I tell myself it’s part of the job. LOL!

  4. Congrats on your latest release, Krista! I’ve never had a supernatural/paranoid experience. But, I figure just because I haven’t had one, that doesn’t mean they aren’t real. Cheers!

    1. So true. I went for many years without any strange experiences. Or maybe I missed them!

  5. My wife is a nurse. Many years ago a co-worker of her went to meet a psychic who did group readings. The friend was chosen to hear about her future or whatever. In the middle of the psychic’s message she stopped and was silent for a bit. She then asked “E’s” co-worker if she had a friend named “E”. Her friend replied YES. I have a message for her. “Tell her that her parents are together and are happy”. E’s maternal grandmother used to live with them and even though the girls would toss out stocking tights with runs they would find them washed and back in their drawers. After grandma passed on at over the century mark that still happened. This family definitely believes in friendly spirits who watch over us.

    1. That’s really odd. I would believe, too, if that happened to me! Wow!

  6. Congratulations on the book. Very, very cool subject for research. Thanks for the article too!

    1. I thought a few people might find it interesting. It’s an intriguing subject.

  7. Love the covers. What a way to create a book that keeps giving after the first read is done! Brilliant.

    Ghosts, of course. We are matter, matter cannot be created or destroyed. We stick around. Now, whether we haunt. That might be a more personal call 🙂

  8. I have occasionally very much felt the presence of my daddy who died in 1974. He was always my protector and I feel he still is. If he’s that real to me, I suspect other people have similar experiences. Are they ghosts or just very strong memories of the ones we love? Who know? What difference does it make? It’s still wonderful.

    1. It is wonderful! And I agree with you. Is it our brains that create this feeling? Or is there more to it?

  9. We have had ghost dog in our house. After our Golden Retriever, Needa, died in our house from a just diagnosed heart problem, our neighbor drove by and saw her looking out the window. Then when we got our new pup, Texie, she did things that we had taught Needa, but had not taught her yet. Needa was not allowed upstairs and we had put up baby gates when she was a pup. She somehow tried to get upstairs and one of the gates fell on her as they were not attached to the wall. That scared her so she never tried to go up the front stairs again. But then one day, she followed me upstairs on the back stairs and saw where she was at the front stairs and was afraid to come down. After that she never tried to go upstairs. Texie never tried to go upstairs as she seemed to know. We taught Needa to sit until we released her for her meals. Texie had been the runt and always charged her food, but three weeks after we got her, she started to sit and wait for us to release her and we had not tried to teach her that yet. There are more instances of this, so, yes I have encountered and do believe in ghosts.

  10. I believe that our spirits go to heaven when we die. Thank you for sharing. I love the cover of your new book.

  11. I don’t know if ghosts exist or not. I have never experience seeing a ghost. However, I do feel my late father’s presence. His nickname was Rainbow. The week after he left us, my sister and I saw several rainbows in the sky. One day, we even saw a double rainbow. We were screaming with joy in the car. My poor brother-in-law almost had to pull off on the side of the highway. Also, my father appears in my dreams, always comforting pleasant dreams and sometimes gives me advice.
    I enjoyed today’s post. I am currently reading Murder Outside the Lines. I read all of Krista Davis’ books. They are all such fun books to read.

    1. Thanks you so much, Annette! I think a lot of us have moments like that. How wonderful that you see him in your dreams. I could use some advice from my dad sometimes!

  12. What a great interview, Krista! I hate thinking about ghosts and spooky stuff. I’ll just be over here in the corner coloring one of those fabulous book covers…

  13. Krista, I can’t wait to read your new book! And what a fun discussion on ghosts. My younger brother was a paranormal investigator (a hobby of his) and boy did we have some interesting conversations on the subject. I’m a believer!

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