Well it seems you can, on eBay.
eBay is where the world goes to shop … and some of the items it sells are out of this world.
Research is the fun part of writing and it can be divided quite neatly into two parts: practical, on the ground research and online noodling. Without a doubt, today’s writers are spoiled with access to the entire world. There are so many interesting sites with a wealth of information. However there is a caveat, and I’m sure all writers have come across this at some time: research can inevitably take you down unintended paths. For instance, whilst I was working on my last novel Mirror Image, and researching various aspects of the paranormal, I often ended up on some odd and wonderful sites. But one of the biggest surprises I discovered was on one of the largest and most popular sites on the internet: eBay. Alongside the clothes and watches, shoes and bags, crafts and tchotchkes, people were actually selling and buying paranormal items.
I quickly typed in Haunted Objects. First up was an Effanbee doll called “Blythe.” (A haunted doll – and writers love haunted dolls!) I discovered that Blythe is a gentle spirit who winks and constantly opens and closes her eyes. The current owner has communicated with her through dreams. Having read the complete history behind Blythe I’ll admit, I was tempted, but just before I hit the Make Offer button, I decided to see what else eBay had to offer. Check out Blythe here.
I then typed in the words “Haunted Dolls.” Up scrolled a fabulous listing ranging anywhere from haunted clown dolls to dolls acting as spirit vessels holding good or even evil spirits. (Note to self: avoid, because if a lifetime of reading, writing and researching into the occult has taught me anything, it is that odd things lurk in the shadows.) There was Jessica, Emily, Evelyn, Miranda, Blaze, Arlene, Lisa, Angelica, Rose … and, lest you think only female dolls are haunted, there were were also a couple of male offerings. There is Paul who apparently likes to make his presence known; Henry, who is a little shy at first but seems to become much more active when he knows he’s at home. I was relieved not to have discovered a haunted Barbie or Ken somewhere in the collection!
Next I moved on to Haunted Jewelry, and was presented with a list of rings, pendants, brooches, necklaces, earrings and more.
Some of the rings were Wiccan which had been infused with magical powers by a Wiccan High Priestesses and her coven. For those of you who may not know, Wicca was developed in England. This modern day witchcraft dates back to mid 20th Century and is a craft which promotes a peaceful, harmonious and balanced way of life. The roots of Wicca disappear into the mists of history and myth, but it was Gerald Gardner, a British Civil Servant, who revived the religious belief in the 1950’s after the British Government repealed the anti-witchcraft laws. It is now the fastest growing religion in America.
Also on eBay are Voodoo rings. One in particular caught my eye. Handmade and forged by a blacksmith in New Orleans, this unique, one of a kind piece is supposed to be haunted by the spirit of the Voodoo Spirit is was originally crafted for. It is fashioned into a skull with two large teeth which protrude from the base. Apparently the teeth were used to make incisions in the skin for blood rituals. Surprisingly, there are currently no offers. Check it out here.
There were also haunted Djinn rings. Djinn are more commonly known as a genie and the spirits can be good, bad or neutrally benevolent. Renowned author, Graham Masterton, wrote a novel called “The Djinn” in 1977 which went on to become one of his most popular novels. I have read it and it is one of those books that you’ll find yourself reading again and again.
However, I think my best haunted find of the day had to be the Antique Wood Dibbuk Box with the caption Spirit-Buyer Beware! Perhaps unsurprisingly, it is currently priced at $666, and there are 10 buyers keenly watching. It comes from a very old home in Laurel Canyon, CA. Apparently, the box and its contents has an overwhelming energy and when a medium was called in to do a session on the Dibbuk box, she repeatedly got the messages Very Evil, Beware!
Read more about it here: and this is one of those items where the phrase “buyer beware” really does apply.
I’m always on the lookout for beautiful mirrors and naturally, could not resist the temptation to research Haunted Mirrors. There is surprisingly little available online, but I did come across this beauty: Antique Empire Era Mercury Wall Mirror Mahogany Wood Frame. I was disappointed to find no history behind the curious object, though there are a lot of photos. And with the current asking price of $2,296 I’d certainly like to know I’m getting something truly haunted.
Of course the mirror in the novel Mirror Image is real. The mirror belonged to Dr. John Dee, a 16th century alchemist, mathematician, geographer, astronomer and astrologer. Dee used his scrying mirror to summon spirits. You can read about him and his mirror on The Truth Behind The Mirror.
So for all you budding ghost enthusiasts looking for the weird and wonderful do check out eBay. However, BEWARE, you will find yourself lost in the selection for hours on end … perhaps never to be seen again.
If you have a haunted object in your home I’d love to hear about it. Find me on twitter @melanieruthrose and let me know about the object.