I’ve heard of haunting yourself to death, but laughing yourself to death is unheard of insofar as you are sitting in a theatre amidst hundreds of shivering anthropological beings, all firm believers in the supernatural. And yet, you will find that you don’t really feel odd: you make the others feel odd.

On a website, you have about ten seconds (maximum) to make an impression on your visitor that will decide whether they stay or not. In a short story, as far as my experience is concerned, it is just the first sentence.…