(Close Window)
Topic: Higley's book about The Dark
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 8, 2007 03:58PM)
OK..I promised Tony and others I let everybody know when the book was out. Because of all the hits I'm getting to certain pages I decided to move up the availability.

It's not a magic book but it is about the chemistry of entertainment in the dark and why it works.

Scary Dark Rides (From The Midways to Disneyland)is available in Hard Cover at $28 and Soft Cover @ $14.99 from


Thanks all. You'll like it. :)
Message: Posted by: Gede Nibo (Feb 8, 2007 04:01PM)
Boy did I open a can o' worms...er, Zibits...

good luck!
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 8, 2007 04:50PM)
Mine first came out in 1999 and went through 8 (eight) successful printings...it ain't your can or can opener :)

I recently (last year) re-wrote it and planned to re-publish this spring BUT with all the hits I'm getting I figured now was the time.

Where were you in 99? hahaha and what were you wearing? Seems like a hundred years ago.

Thanks my friend

Message: Posted by: ptbeast (Feb 8, 2007 05:00PM)
I have not yet read the latest revision/incarnation of Scary Dark Rides, but I have read the previous edition. This is a must read for fans of the midway and dark rides in particular. It brought back many childhood memories of my first Dark Entertainment experiences. I have no doubt that those dark rides had a huge effect on the performer (and probably the person) I am today. Thank you Doug for encouraging me -- though your book -- to relive those experiences.

Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Feb 8, 2007 05:00PM)
Thank you Doug.

Message: Posted by: Gede Nibo (Feb 8, 2007 05:14PM)
Ah, but tis my secret publisher.... :)
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 8, 2007 05:57PM)
Mine too! :)

I'll be expecting your order.
Message: Posted by: Gede Nibo (Feb 8, 2007 07:00PM)
Ah, cant go on rides.....turbans too big they say....its probably just because they think I have a bomb :(
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 8, 2007 07:16PM)
Uh...like it say's on the book flap...It's for those who ride, will ride, can't ride or are afraid to ride.

I bought your book and I don't do voodoo, can't do voodoo and am afraid to do voodoo. haha

oh...and don't blame the turban, it's the shaky legs. :)
Message: Posted by: egregor (Feb 9, 2007 01:53AM)
It's not the turban or the shaky legs, truth be told, HE'S NOT TALL ENOUGH.
Message: Posted by: Eddie Garland (Feb 9, 2007 02:02AM)
And he screams like a little girl.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 9, 2007 01:19PM)
I just had to make a decision to take care of those who asked for signed copies. So here it is...

Soft cover or Hard cover available at the storefront at the publisher by clicking the image on spookybook.com

Note: SIGNED Hard Cover is available by using the PayPal link on the page.

All is readily identified.

Having my book in hard cover and being able to sign it has been a life long dream...thanks all!

This will be a very Limited Edition.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 14, 2007 01:55PM)
I have a new 'twist' on the book thing...you'll find it at the bottom of the page...there is a question...but please don't answer it here...send me a PM or eMail. (It's at the SpookyBook.com page)
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 16, 2007 09:29PM)
Above post obsolete. But the book isn't! ;-) See the new cover.
Message: Posted by: handa (Feb 16, 2007 10:00PM)
I ordered mine!

For those who are unaware, Doug's book is quite a hit among the people who form the membership of amusement park and dark ride historian/enthusiast organizations. I was aware of "that guy's book" before I heard of The Magic Café.
It is the only book of its kind published and is an essential part of a history of spooky entertainment.

I have my e-copy, but there is just something about the feel, weight, and smell (yes, smell!) of a book that makes me prefer the mystique of the printed page over the convenience of electronic information.

Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Feb 17, 2007 07:18PM)
I have a feeling it will be on interest for anyone who loves the dark, period!
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Feb 17, 2007 07:25PM)
What about those of us afraid of the dark?
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Feb 17, 2007 08:06PM)
I'd ask- what the heck are they doing around here? Well, we can probably use them as vict- eerr specs for Dark Museum effects...
Message: Posted by: reese (Feb 17, 2007 09:25PM)
Why was my post deleted that asked about what the the difference was between the previously free online version of this book and the new commercial (for profit) version of this book?

It's an honest question.

What rule did I violate?

Who deleted it?
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Feb 17, 2007 10:50PM)

1) I don't know

2) Sounds honest

3) Beats me

4) Wasn't me

But I can guess the answer to your first question since I remember the free online version too:

1) Maybe everyone who likes Doug kicked his head to make him realize his work is excellent and he shouldn't hand it out for free

2) The online version is made of electrons, the book is made of different elements and is solid.

3) You get it signed by the High Higly - and thus it is collectable.

4) Maybe there is extra goodies...

Sorry Reese, I could not resist....
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 18, 2007 12:56AM)
Reese...the difference is it's on paper...hold it in your hand...slight re-write...images that were not on line...the ultimate goal for writing it in the first place was a hardcover edition...it was never meant to be online. I had no computer when I first wrote it. I never had the means to get it done properly till now. The only reason it was on line was between printings was I wanted to keep it available for all those who were eMailing to buy it or wanted to read it...I decided to give it away for awhile...it was a gift, till I was ready to re-publish it...my dream to have a book not a digital posting. And yes I have been bugged by many to get it back in print and realize it has value as a solid record.
You sound a bit challenging using the words 'commercial for profit'...it was written that way, you bet your ass it was...but if you ever put out a book you know the profit is non existent compared to the work behind it and the tiny margin you have after printing costs. Sorry if you feel slighted but I'm a Capitalist... but I did give it away with good intentions and the intention to get it on paper where it belongs. You read it free I gather and I got it on paper for those who didn't including my Kids, Grandkids, great Grandkids and everyone else who is ordering it...many who even have the first couple of editions which were hand made. Win win.
Hope that answers your qustion again as I did the first time you asked. If this gets deleted don't forget there is eMail which makes sense anyway since I'm the only one who can answer your question.

Bottom line is...I put it on line for everyone to read free because it was almost free for me to put it there.

I charge for the book because it costs a ton to buy the darn things. Yes...I buy them...so I can sell them. Maybe after I sell a couple of hundred in a few years I'll get some of that profit you mention. Or not. I don't care. I have my book...another dream checked off the list.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 18, 2007 09:35AM)
By the way reese, your post was not deleted because of anything you posted...the whole thread disappeared...there were other posts including many of mine...no biggie...I don't think anybody's chasing you. :)
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Feb 18, 2007 09:53AM)
Why do the nice guys, the decent people around here get jumped on? I mean the people who have something worthwhile to offer, WHETHER THEY SELL IT OR NOT, are the ones that some people (the "Alpha Hotels" in phonetic speak) take issue with. Doug has contributed a lot of information and insight -- all very useful to us -- and if he has something to sell, let him sell it!

Tashi Delek,

Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 18, 2007 10:46AM)
Gee Bill...I don't think reese was 'jumping'...not realy. I think he must have enjoyed the read online as a freebie and just wanted to know if there was value in getting the new hardcover/softcover version...and would he discover something new.
Also he liked it so much he wanted to read it again, but it was gone.

But thank you for appearing in shining armor sword in hand! Ligon you're a gem of the ancient order. A lot of people don't know of my philanthropic tendencies...or those that do assume I can afford 'em. That book was doing no one any good not being read. It was a real effort to re-type the whole thing for on line posting. I don't have a scanner and it was composed originally on a typewriter. But it wasn't a blog...just a temporary storage open to the public.

Hope that clears it all up.

The book is a good thing as was the free online access while it lasted.
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Feb 18, 2007 11:42AM)
Well, Doug, maybe I jumped on Reese too hard, but I have seen that sort of thing happen around here before. It just irks me to see people treated unfairly. It happened to me, too, when I was a neophyte here.

Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 18, 2007 01:08PM)
YOU were a neophyte? Ever? Wow.

But thanks. It's easy to see an 'agenda' in some posts that's for sure. But if they are or aren't it usually makes itself clear after a bit. I've been known to jump in defense of others a few times myself...rarely if ever though amongst the Bizarre crowd. It's kind of why I stay away from a few of the topics here on the Café...I tend to get my back up when a credentialed member is being dogged by someone who wouldn't know a credential from a credenza.
I think reese had a good question...it's just he thought his post was deleted when it was an entire thread removed for other reasons. As above...no biggie.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 18, 2007 02:15PM)
By the way...I put a little history of the book and it's cover art and concepts on the page. http://SpookyBook.com for those who like looking into the past.
Message: Posted by: reese (Feb 18, 2007 10:06PM)
On 2007-02-18 12:42, Bill Ligon wrote:
Well, Doug, maybe I jumped on Reese too hard, but I have seen that sort of thing happen around here before. It just irks me to see people treated unfairly. It happened to me, too, when I was a neophyte here.


Happy Losar Bill,

I should have been more specific in my question. Doug has answered it already.... I was just wondering if the work had been substantially re-written... and yes, I miss the chance to reread it for free. I really enjoyed the read.

Was wondering too if my question had offended anyone and got deleted for some unknown reason. Apparently my post wasn't singled out. Looks like I did offend though. It's good though to see that Doug doesn't sweat the small stuff.

I'm sure I'll end up p#ssing someone off again, someday in the future... here or elsewhere. Sometimes there's a difference of opinion.

No biggie.
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Feb 19, 2007 07:57AM)
Sorry, Reese, I was wrong. I sincerely apologize.

Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 19, 2007 08:19AM)
Thanks reese.

and Bill...you're still my Hero. :) Watch for the Bat signal.
Message: Posted by: Bill Ligon (Feb 19, 2007 09:57AM)
Sheesh! :blush:
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 21, 2007 11:26AM)
Notice: Only 30 (THIRTY) of the hardcover w/Dist Jacket versions are being printed and signed and numbered! If this sort of thing matters to you get on the stick as half are sold and only 15 left to be ordered.

The soft cover will continue to be available.

Thanks Doug
Message: Posted by: Eddie Garland (Feb 26, 2007 01:51PM)
I received my copy of Scary Dark Rides today. This is perfect timing as I shall save it to read next week in my Amtrak sleeper compartment on my 24 hour or so ride from NYC to Orlando, I'm taking my daughter to Disney World for a week. I will be reading the book on rides, while riding and heading to Disney rides...follow?
Anyhow, thanks again!
Message: Posted by: bosque (Mar 2, 2007 02:26PM)
Well you've done it again- created something that you can hold in your hand and which allows you to be transported to a place of wonder. This book was so good, I forced myself to slow down my reading of it to make it last longer. It brought me back to the Octoberland of my childhood, as well as those early years of parenting where I took my kids to amusement parks on a regular basis. The book made me realize how much I love all dark rides, particularly the scary ones. After I finished reading Scary Dark Rides, I got on the internet and started searching for upcoming fairs, and theme park schedules (can't wait until Memorial Day). Read this book. Read it again. Give a copy to someone who needs a little mystery, nostalgia, magic or adventure in their lives.
-- Steve Bosqsue
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Mar 2, 2007 03:45PM)
Argh - being in Canada, I see I'll be waiting a bit more :( - well, I look forward to next week's snail mail tidings...
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 2, 2007 04:22PM)
Thanks Steven! Glad you liked it!

Bruce: Your's IS in the mail. Ah Canadian postal.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 8, 2007 08:50PM)
Scary Dark Rides: The Hard Cover with Dust jacket has Sold Out. Soft Cover Paperback is available and a new version of the hard cover (Shiny Casewrap) is on the way to me.

The Hard Covers took a long time to get here and while most have been signed and mailed there are 10 that JUST arrived and will be mailed on Saturday the 10th.

You can order the paperback from the site (which will be signed) they were mailed from the publisher and will be here in a couple of days for immediate mailing to buyers. Both cover styles will be avilable. (see site to make your choice)

The new version of the Hard Cover (Casewrap w/o Dust Jacket) is also on the way but there will only be 10 available...so if you want one jump on it.

Those in the UK can get paperback from Joyland Books or if you want signed then from me direct. The Joyland Books version is printed in the UK and my won't reach.

Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 12, 2007 11:11AM)
Hardcover (shiny casewrap) now ready to mail. Only 10 in stock. Paperback will not be restricted to number available and will also be signed. :)
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 12, 2007 04:02PM)
I totally spaced on this. I just had 10 more Hardcover books w/ Dust jacket come in. They are so late, I thought they had been sold! These will be the ONLY one's available and WILL be part of the signed and Numbered group and the FINAL 10 of the Dust Jacket version. Once these are gone, only the Paperback will be offered.
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Mar 12, 2007 07:27PM)
Hee hee mine arrived today - in its nice Dust Jacket and signed and numbered!

A true collector's item of the Dark. An excellent view on what makes a dark ride creepy...

I am inspired to build my own Frightride for Halloween someday... or at least buy an old mobile one and fix it up and leave it the backyard!

Bravo, Higley-san!

Dr S
Message: Posted by: Scattered Dream (Mar 14, 2007 05:20PM)
I got my book around two days ago. And haven't been able to read too much of it because of all my school work, my band, and I was preparing to perform my first act. The first effect I read was a dead or alive test and it's something I definitely hope to perform in the future with my Human Toe. Thanks so much Doug, Jim Magus, and all the other bizzarist that put their time and effort into these stories and effects!!

Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 14, 2007 10:16PM)
You have the wrong book in the right thread Joe or the right book in the wrong thread...Midnight In The Dark Museum is Jim's book.

But thanks!
Message: Posted by: airship (Mar 15, 2007 01:37PM)
Just ordered my copy of the Dark Rides book. Can't wait.

Also bought the Dark Museum book a couple of weeks back, and I'll be needing some extra props to add to my Cannibal Toes so I can do a few more of the effects in that book. Once the budget allows.

Doug, you should just set up an account so I can have part of my paycheck auto-deposited to you every week. Then when enough has been put in, you can just send me the next item on my want list.

Maybe then I could claim you as a dependent, too.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Mar 15, 2007 01:50PM)
I bought a bunch of hard cover books to donate to the Troops in Iraq and can't seem to get any of the orgs to contact me back! Bogus! Any one knows of any who are legit that send things and distribute to the units let me know.

Thanks Airship old balloon dude. :)
Message: Posted by: Eddie Garland (Mar 17, 2007 01:22AM)
I just had the treat of reading SCARY DARK RIDES at night while visiting Disney World by day. What fun and insight this book contains, filled with real love of the dark ride.
Fantastic Doug.
A great piece of Americana. A psychology text book to the very attractions I was seeing.
My child took great strides down the dark ride path this past week.
Wonderful book...highly recommended reading!
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (May 12, 2007 05:21AM)
Doug, so what's the current status? Are all the hardbacks gone? Did you send any to Iraq? Do you have hardbacks you wanted to send to Iraq but couldn't?

In other words, do you have any hardbacks laying around for me to buy? ;)

Love and ghosts,
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (May 12, 2007 05:13PM)
Jeff...I sent some off to individual service people who got ahold of me. There was NO response from any of the agencies. Drat. So yes I have some. eMail me. :)
Message: Posted by: KOTAH (May 12, 2007 11:55PM)
It is so dark, I had to read it with the night light on.
Enjoyed it ver ymuc Doug, as in my PM, it brought back a lot of memories.
Message: Posted by: Philemon Vanderbeck (Aug 21, 2009 04:44AM)
I just finished reading my copy of "Scary Dark Rides."

Thank you, Doug, for a wonderful nostalgic trip back down memory road, when as a punk, I used to hang out at the amusement park in Virginia Beach.

Now you make me wish I was rich enough to create my own old-fashioned dark ride. Screw the high-tech special effects used nowadays. I want a ride with nothing more than sounds, surprises, and lots and lots of luminous paint.