Murder Box

One of the concepts that intrigued me most about the Stanley Hotel was the idea that the ghosts on the premises weren’t simply from visitors who’d died at the hotel–that instead many of the ghosts actually migrated there with guests and were then left behind. That idea was the conceptual spark for my story, Murder Box.

Along with that, I found three physical locations that inspired me to write the story (click any image for full-res version). The most important spot is the tale’s namesake:


I found this creepy place while exploring the grounds with Sephera Giron. I was trying to find a place to do some bouldering, so we wandered out into the wilderness behind the hotel. We followed a trail past some boulders and found this little gem:

MurderBox_Exterior_2Basically, it’s a concrete rectangular structure with four walls, no windows, no doors, and no roof! I called it the Murder Box. Here’s the exterior from a different angle:

MurderBox_Exterior_3And here are two shots of the interior:

MurderBox_Interior_1 MurderBox_Interior_2I have no idea what’s up with the Christmas tree, but it only adds to the creepiness! The next location was the hedge maze.


Like many visitors, I had envisioned the maze would be a mammoth structure, only to find that it instead a less-than-imposing (although artfully crafted) labyrinth:

Maze_Exterior_1Still, despite its diminutive stature, the maze had potential. I wanted to find a way to make it scary. It occurred to me that if someone was down on the ground and severely restrained, the maze could suddenly become a very intimidating place, with its jagged edged tiles and limited sight lines.Maze_Interior_2Plus, I loved the view of the hotel at night, seen from inside the maze:

Hotel_Exterior3) THE HALLWAYS

Finally, I spent a lot of time at the Stanley roaming the halls. I loved that how no matter the time of day or night–no matter how bright the sun was shining–the hallways remained dim. It was like the hotel consumed all the sunlight.

Hallway_1One morning, I spotted laundry bags sitting outside some rooms. Something about that made me shiver. I loved the idea that those bags could hold something sinister within.

Hallway_2Here’s a link to some rather spotty footage of the hall:


I hope you enjoy Murder Box. I’ve included a few more reference photos below.

THANKS for reading!

Rob E. Boley

PATH TO THE MURDER BOX!MurderBox_Path_1 MurderBox_Path_2 MurderBox_Path_3 MurderBox_Path_4MURDER BOX EXTERIOR:

MurderBox_Exterior_1MurderBox_Exterior_4MAZE EXTERIOR:

Maze_Exterior_2 Maze_Exterior_3MAZE INTERIOR: