eldritchhobbit: (Default)

dramyhsturgis:



Thanks to all of you for your friendship throughout this past year. Here’s to making the new year a better one! Happy 2019!


Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,

The flying cloud, the frosty light;

The year is dying in the night;

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

Ring, happy bells, across the snow:

The year is going, let him go;

Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,

For those that here we see no more,

Ring out the feud of rich and poor,

Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,

And ancient forms of party strife;

Ring in the nobler modes of life,

With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,

The faithless coldness of the times;

Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,

But ring the fuller minstrel in.

- Alfred Lord Tennyson, “Ring Out, Wild Bells”

eldritchhobbit: (LOTR/Road Goes Ever)
I’m delighted to say that my keynote address from the 2018 Generic Magic Festival (”Why We Need New Magic”) is now available here on the latest episode of the StarShipSofa podcast.

If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
The day is here, my friends! We made it! Happy Halloween, Happy Samhain, and (slightly early) Happy Día de los Muertos!

Thank you for joining me in my month-long holiday celebration. I truly hope you’ve enjoyed it. I have!

Everyone, please stop by, grab a virtual latte or cider or hot cocoa, a candied apple or some roasted pumpkin seeds, or even a goblet of blood and a plate of brains, and say hello!


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(Photo by RawanS.)



“Dusk in Autumn” by Sara Teasdale, 1884-1933

The moon is like a scimitar,
A little silver scimitar,
A-drifting down the sky.
And near beside it is a star,
A timid twinkling golden star,
That watches likes an eye.

And thro’ the nursery window-pane
The witches have a fire again,
Just like the ones we make,—
And now I know they’re having tea,
I wish they’d give a cup to me,
With witches’ currant cake.

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(Photo by loLO-o.)



“Theme in Yellow” by Carl Sandburg, 1878-1967

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o'-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling.

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(Photo by SometimesAliceFX.)
eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(Art by FateAmenableToChange.)

Here’s some news you can use from “On Preparing a Corpse in Ireland” by Jeremiah Curtain:

…In arranging the corpse in the coffin the feet are generally fastened together to keep them in position. This is done frequently by pinning the stockings [to] each other, but however done, the fastening is removed before burial and the feet are left perfectly free. The corpse is not bound in any way or confined in the coffin. That it is held necessary to free the feet of the corpse is shown by what happened once in Cahirciveen. A man died and his widow forgot to remove the pins fastening the stockings to each other. The voice of the dead man came to the woman on the night after the funeral, telling her that his feet were bound, and to free them. Next day she had the grave opened, took the pins from the stockings, and left the feet untrammelled.

It is firmly believed by some people that the dead rise in their graves time after time, each by himself, independently, as it is by others that all men will rise ages hence at one call and be judged for their deeds simultaneously. Besides the separate movements of each dead person we have the great social apparition on the night of All Saints, when the dead come to the houses of their friends and sit by the fire, unseen of all save those who are to die within the coming year….  

- Published in Tales of the Fairies and of the Ghost World collected from Oral Tradition in South-West Munster (1895); Quoted from A Halloween Reader: Poems, Stories, and Plays for Halloweens Past, edited by Lesley Pratt Bannatyne (2004)

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(Art by mumblyjoe.)

Here is a bit of spookiness for your day, 19th-century Iowa style.

“Jack o Lantern Lights”

The strange Jack o Lantern Lights in Iowa were always a mystery to me. They seemed to move thru the air, about ten feet above the earth. It was a soft light red glow and moved slowly.

People naturally had all kinds of ideas about them. Some thought they were spirits or symbols, others that they were some sort of life from deep in the earth. Some tried to follow them expecting to be led to some strange spot, where old Spanish or Indian treasure lay hidden. They were a good sign or a bad sign according to the one who watched them. It was an unearthly glow but this was party because of their unusual motion. People would say they were nothing but an overworked imagination but they were real to me. I can only explain them as pockets of luminous gas which escaped from some of the coal shafts and floated away. They would appear and disappear. But they remained more or less a mystery.


- Oral History of Abram C. Hardin, recorded by Harold J. Moss for the Federal Writer’s Project of the U.S. Government, 1938. Hardin saw the lights in Iowa, where he lived until 1875. Quoted from A Halloween Reader: Poems, Stories, and Plays for Halloweens Past, edited by Lesley Pratt Bannatyne (2004).

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

(Art by Someone144.)

My vote for the spookiest Halloween-friendly bit of local news this year comes from Ipswich. There is so much wrong with this story, I can’t even begin to unpack it. I’ll just be over in the corner in a fetal position while you read this article:

“Spiders Blamed after Broken Siren Played Creepy Nursery Rhymes Randomly at Night to Townsfolk.”

This went on for months!

"A tormented mother living in Bramford Road with her two young children has been woken on an almost nightly basis by a tinny, distant rendition of ‘It’s Raining, It’s Pouring’. She said the threatening undertone of the song had left her frightened and questioning whether she was imagining things. After months of torment, she finally reported the unusual complaint to Ipswich Borough Council."

I thought our local weather siren, which sounds a bit like Big Brother is getting ready to stamp his boot into my all-too-human face if I don’t seek shelter immediately, was off-putting. But thank goodness there are no spiders involved or – worse still – children’s rhymes in children’s voices. I’m counting my blessings.

Sleep well tonight, everyone.



eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(Art by Najuzaid.)

Today I’d like to share an excerpt from “Reading Horror Can Arm Us Against A Horrifying World” by Ruthanna Emrys (2018).


The banal evils of the world — children shot, neighbors exiled, selves reframed in an instant as inhuman threats — these are horrible, but they aren’t horror. Horror promises that the plot arc will fall after it rises. Horror spins everyday evil to show its fantastical face, literalizing its corroded heart into something more dramatic, something easier to imagine facing down. Horror helps us name the original sins out of which horrible things are born.

Some of my favorite horror stories are those in which real-world terrors
grow gradually into something stranger. Mariana Enriquez, recently translated into English in Things We Lost in the Fire, writes a Buenos Aires in which poverty and pollution inevitably swell into risen corpses and sacrificial cults. Stephen King’s Carrie only destroys her town because abuse and bullying feed her frustrated teenage telekinesis. Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s classic “The Yellow Wallpaper” starts from the simple psychological claustrophobia of well-meaning relations and deep-rooted sexism….

Horror as a genre is built around one truth: that the world is full of fearful things. But the best horror tells us more. It tells us how to live with being afraid. It tells us how to distinguish real evil from harmless shadows. It tells us how to fight back. It tells us that we can fight the worst evils, whether or not we all survive them — and how to be worthy of having our tales told afterward.

Read the complete essay here.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
Today I have a story for you that’s perfect for the season: “You Know How the Story Goes” by Thomas Olde Heuvelt from Tor.com.

Here’s a teaser:

It’s the same old story. Take a chance and pick up a hitchhiker. But only after midnight and only when you need some company. Of course, the hitchhiker will disappear. That’s the way the story goes, right? But this time you are the hitchhiker. And there’s a tunnel up ahead.

Read the complete story here.


(Art by 0Lizuza0.)

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
Here’s another recommendation for great Halloween reading: A Suggestion of Ghosts: Supernatural Fiction by Women 1854-1900, edited by J.A. Mains (Black Shuck Books, 2017, paperback 2018).

You can hear my extended review of the anthology here on the StarShipSofa podcast.





(Art by Blackbirdmotel.)

Here is an atmospheric excerpt from a story in the collection, “A Legend of All-Hallow Eve” by Mrs. Georgiana S. Hull (first published in Harper’s Monthly, November 1879):

Glancing listlessly over a newspaper, I discovered that it was All-Saints Day! My terrible night was the eve of All-Saints, the night on which the dead come out of their graves to haunt their old homes. All the year silent and low they lie, and then, with a longing for the old home, they creep out this one night to enter the old haunts. While we sleep, the house-place swarms with the poor ghosts. This is their penance and expiation for deeds done in the flesh, until the soul in the fullness of perfection shall enter into possession of the divine. The false witness, the profligate, the murderer, the unforgiving, the miser, the sensualist, the uncharitable – it may be their hell to thus come back one night in the year, stung by an avenging Nemesis, until, their penance done, they are wafted over the Styx. The good ghosts sleep, and are troubled with no waking.

And so I thought with a dazed brain, until the dark recesses of the great gloomy room seemed peopled with phantoms, waiting in misery for their Prospero to shake off their shackles of bondage…

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

First, breaking news from one of my favorite authors, Peadar Ó Guilín!

Here is his new announcement:

I have just launched CreepyCast — my new PodCast. It will be a short series of 6 or 8 episodes, where I’ll be reading some of my own short-stories.

I have only now submitted it to iTunes and other Podcasting sites for distribution, so it may be another week or so before it’s available on general release, but in the meantime, if anybody is curious, you can listen to the first three episodes here.

Just in time for Halloween!

Yay! Check out CreepyCast!

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(Photo by the brilliant Elizabeth.)

Now I’d like to recommend a fascinating website, one of my favorite places to go to disappear down rabbit holes: Strange Company: A Walk on the Weird Side of History.

The website’s mission is literally straight from Edgar Allan Poe: “…we should pass over all biographies of ‘the good and the great,’ while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows.”

Here is an excerpt from one of the site’s recent posts, “The Ghosts of Chateau des Noyers”:


Considering Normandy’s very long and colorful history, you figure it would take a lot for a residence to get the reputation as its “most haunted chateau,” but judging by what one family said it experienced for two straight years, the title may be justified.

Château des Noyers was located in the Calvados village of Le Tourneur. It was built in 1835, largely from the stones of an earlier medieval castle. The site had long had a reputation for anomalous activity–a spectral woman in white here, a werewolf there–but no solid evidence of High Strangeness was recorded until a couple by the name of de Manville inherited the chateau in 1867. The de Manvilles brought with them their son Maurice, the boy’s tutor, a gardener, a cook, and a maid.

Soon after they moved in, they noticed a few odd disturbances–strange noises in the night, doors slamming for no reason, objects inexplicably being moved–but those soon ceased. Life at the chateau was quiet until October of 1875, when the family found themselves plunged into an eerie and terrifying experience, one which, luckily for ghost researchers, was minutely chronicled by M. de Manville in his diary….

Read the complete post here.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

I recently read two incredible novellas/short novels that most definitely deserve recommendation, especially during the Halloween season.

I learned about Misplaced Persons, also published as Displaced Person, by Australian author Lee Harding (1979) from a wonderful list by the always-eldritch Mike Davis from The Lovecraft Ezine in his fantastic post of “Lovecraftian Novels I Recommend.” His recommendation was so compelling that I started looking for the novel, and the majority of the reviews I found said similar things: the reviewers had remembered the novel from their young adult days and, after tracking it down for a rereading decades later, found it to be equally compelling if not more so. After reading this work, I totally understand why it stayed with readers. It will haunt me for a long time to come.

One day the protagonist, an Australian teen, realizes that people don’t really see him anymore. He places an order at McDonald’s that never gets filled; his girlfriend seems to look right through him; he comes home to find his parents having dinner without him. What’s more, sounds fade, and even the posters on the wall of his bedroom lose their color. I hesitate to say more, because the journey is both so fantastic and so utterly relatable that you deserve to experience it on your own. Suffice it to say that this short book goes there, unflinchingly, with an impact. Cosmic horror? Definitely.

Here’s a quote:

Was it possible that my life, up to now, had been no more than a dream, that the reality I had known had been but a pretense, and that I was about to embark upon some mysterious metamorphosis?

If you take a word – any simple, ordinary, everyday word – and repeat it over to yourself often enough you will soon discover that it loses all meaning; sheer repetition robs any word of our familiarity with it. And could it be so with life itself?

I thought these were very wild, very bold thoughts for someone like myself, who had never worried much before about existence. And they were not uplifting. As I walked out of Flinders Street Station and viewed again the sickly wasteland of the city, I wondered if I was indeed mad, or if I had been displaced from an older order of reality… and placed in another.

This can be easily read in one or two sittings. Highly recommended!

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I am a fan of Stephen Volk. I had the good fortune to narrate his “After the Ape” for the TalesToTerrify podcast, and the story still follows me around to this day. His short story “Hounded” is one of the best Sherlockian tales I’ve ever read. He has an ability to go for the jugular in all he writes, and Whitstable (2013) is no exception.

A loving tribute to one of my all-time favorite actors, Peter Cushing, Whitstable draws on real history and finds the man a new widower and utterly lost without his beloved wife. Then a young boy who needs a slayer of real-life monsters finds him and mistakes him for one of the characters he portrayed on film, Van Helsing, and Cushing discovers a new reason to live. This is a moving and powerful love letter to the gentleman named Peter Cushing, to Hammer Horror movies, and to the power of the stories we tell ourselves to give ourselves courage and create light in the darkness.

Here is a quote:

“Good gracious,” Cushing said. “You mustn’t take these kind of pictures too much to heart, young man.”

“Pictures? What’s pictures got to do with it?” The abruptness was nothing short of accusatory. “I’m talking about here and now and you’re the vampire hunter and you need to help me.” The boy realised his harsh tone of voice might be unproductive, so quickly added, sheepishly, “Please.” Then, more bluntly, “It’s your job.”

It’s your job – Vampire Hunter.

You’re heroic.

You’re powerful.

Cushing swallowed, his mouth unaccountably dry.

This is a terrible, beautiful, horrifying, affirming story, and I think you should read it.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(Art by RJDaae.)

In the past I have recommended the podcast Astonishing Legends, but it’s worth repeating. This year, hosts Scott and Forrest have truly outdone themselves.

Scott and Forrest pursue their mission to take a look at legendary strange and unusual events from throughout history and interview people who’ve had close encounters with the unexplained. They strive to bring you everything that’s entertaining about those stories and remind you that it’s okay to laugh at scary stories and, respectfully, even the people that tell them. “Put your headphones on, settle in for your commute and get ready to experience a show like nothing you’ve ever heard before.”

Even in a year of outstanding episodes, the multi-part series devoted to Chicago’s urban legend of the phantom hitchhiker “Resurrection Mary” stands out as a highlight. Here are the episodes: Part One (Episode 102), Part Two (Episode 103), Part Three (Episode 104), and Part Four (Episode 105).

To set the stage, have a listen as Ian Hunter sings “Resurrection Mary.”



eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

It was my honor to be invited by two terrific podcasts to narrate two wonderfully spooky stories this year, one classic and one contemporary, both written by amazing women. I love these chilling tales, so I’d like to invite you to check them out!

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Contemporary

The contemporary story I narrated is “Dead Canyons” by Ann K. Schwader for Tales to Terrify, Episode 312.

Here’s a teaser:

Darkness. Lifeless, thirsting darkness. Layer upon layer of alien history bled out, worn down to a depth unmatched in the solar system. An open wound in a dying world.

And at the bottom, scrabbling like a beetle in the shadow of a boot, one small machine intelligence twists its wheels toward retreat –

“Are we disturbing you, Susan?” Dr. Susan Barnard flinches in her seat. Flash dream. Another damn flash dream, in the middle of a meeting – and in front of the mission director, always a plus. Inez’s crow-bright eyes are merciless.

“Sorry. Haven’t gotten a lot of sleep lately.”Truer to say she’s been avoiding sleep, but Inez probably doesn’t want that truth. Or the explanation behind it. Or, indeed, her presence on the Clementine II team.

Listen to the complete episode here.


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Classic

The classic story I narrated was “Beyond the Dead Reef” by James Tiptree, Jr. for PseudoPod, Episode 603.

Here’s a teaser:

My informant was, of course, spectacularly unreliable.

The only character reference I have for him comes from the intangible nuances of a small restaurant-owner’s remarks, and the only confirmation of his tale lies in the fact that an illiterate fishing-guide appears to believe it. If I were to recount all the reasons why no sane mind should take it seriously, we could never begin. So I will only report the fact that today I found myself shuddering with terror when a perfectly innocent sheet of seaworn plastic came slithering over my snorkeling-reef, as dozens have done for years—and get on with the story.

Listen to the complete episode here.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
Today I have another spooky podcast recommendation for you! Actually, I’m recommending two podcasts, but they are sister podcasts, both hosted by the wonderful Tara A. Devlin, and both devoted to creepy Japanese stories. Both share a website, too!

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(Kuchisake-onna art by Cageyshick05.)

Kowabana: ‘True’ Japanese Scary Stories from around the Internet is “a fortnightly Japanese horror podcast specialising in Japanese creepypastas, urban legends, and other ‘true’ scary stories.” All stories are translated and narrated by Tara A. Devlin.

Toshiden is “a fortnightly show looking at the truth behind various Japanese urban legends. Horror author and translator Tara A. Devlin takes you down the rabbit hole to find out whether these legends have any truth to them, how they came about, and why they exist.”

I am thoroughly enjoying both of these podcasts. Toshiden is the newer of the two with a shorter backlog, however, so if you’re looking for a starting place, it won’t take long to catch up with these episodes. I love the fact that Devlin researches the origins of these urban legends to seek out whether or not any kernel of truth inspired them and how these stories mutated in the wild. Devlin also has a dramatic voice made for narration, which makes listening to both of these podcasts a spooky delight.

I recommend starting with the first Toshiden episode, which is dedicated to the urban legend of Kuchisake-onna. Here is the episode’s description:

“'Am I pretty?’ she asks before removing her mask, revealing her mouth cut from ear-to-ear. Kuchisake-onna is the Japanese urban legend of urban legends. Find out how she came to be and the truth behind her story right here.”



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(Kuchisake-onna art by Kageyshick05.)
eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

(Art by Alex-Cooper.)

Today I have a powerful story to share. It’s not spine-tingling horror, but it is haunting in a very different way. And it’s definitely related to our Halloween interests: “The Ghoul Goes West” by Dale Bailey at Tor.com.

Here’s a teaser:

My brother Denny died when I was twenty-six.

I got the call at 1:13 in the afternoon—which made it 10:13 in Los Angeles. I know this so precisely because I’d been at my manuscript all morning, lost in a dream of old Hollywood, and when the phone startled me out of my reverie, I glanced at my watch, as you do when you have been surprised awake. I was in my apartment, at my desk, the merciless August sunlight of east Tennessee molten in my windows. Denny and I had both fled the grim wastes of western Pennsylvania, seeking warmer climes. As soon as he’d collected his high school diploma, Denny had gone west, to California. Two years later, when I collected my own, I’d headed south. I sometimes thought he’d made the better choice, but that morning, when I picked up the phone, I was reminded otherwise.

The man on the other end asked if I was Benjamin Clarke.

“Ben,” I said.

The man paused as if the intimacy was unwelcome. When he spoke again—“Mr. Clarke,” he said—I recognized the flat, impersonal sympathy affected by all officialdom, from priests to principals, when bad news was to be delivered. I braced my hand against the desk, and when he started to introduce himself as Officer Something or Other I interrupted him.

“It’s Dennis, isn’t it?” I said.

It was, of course. I’d known it from the minute I’d heard that tone in the officer’s voice. He went on to describe the circumstances, but he needn’t have bothered. Heroin might have been the proximate cause. But it was Hollywood that killed him.

The way Hollywood has of grinding up its postulants was much on my mind at the time. For the better part of a year, I’d been working on my thesis, a study of Ed Wood and his bizarre entourage: Vampira and the Amazing Criswell, Tor Johnson and Bunny Breckinridge, the whole gang of oddballs and misfits, Bela Lugosi among them. In one way or another, Hollywood destroyed them all, but it was Lugosi’s doom that particularly interested me, then and now. It was Lugosi who had drawn me to study film in the first place. It was Lugosi who had drawn Denny to Hollywood.

Read the complete story here.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(An image of Zhong Kui, the vanquisher of ghosts and evil beings, painted sometime before 1304 C.E., by Gong Kai.)

If you’re looking to get medieval on the season this Halloween, I recommend Hidden and Visible Realms: Early Medieval Chinese Tales of the Supernatural and the Fantastic, edited and translated by Zhenjun Zhang and published this year by Columbia University Press.

This is a collection of zhiguai, or accounts of anomalies or tales of the supernatural, compiled by Liu Yiqing (403-444 C.E.).

Obviously these medieval Chinese tales were not written for Halloween specifically, but sections perfect for the season, including “A Spectacle of Monsters,” “The Realm of Ghosts,” and “The Netherworld and This World.”

You can listen to my extended review of the book here in my “Looking Back on Genre History” segment on Episode 553 of the StarShipSofa podcast!

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Here are two of my favorite brief and spooky stories in the volume.

First, “A Coffin Cart”:

50. A Coffin Cart

During the Yuanjia reign, Wang Zhi of Taiyuan was initially appointed the Governor of Jiazhou. When he went out in a cart, he heard a clang in front of it and saw a coffin cart on the way; yet the rest of the people could not see it. After arriving at Jingzhou, he died immediately.

Next, “Zhuge Yangmin”:

53. Zhuge Yangmin

After Zhuge Yangmin (d. 317) became wealthy and noble, within approximately a month, or several dozen days, he woke up startled at night and jumped around as if battling someone.

Once staying overnight with him, Mao Xiuzhi was stunned at this. Mao could not understand his behaviour but watched him for a long while.

Zhangmin told him, “This creature is extremely strong. Nobody could control it except me.”

Mao asked, “What creature was it?”

Zhangmin said, “I only saw a fairly black creature. Its arms and feet could not be clearly distinguished. Recently it came on several nights, and I fought with it. Naturally, I have been startled and terrified.”

In the house, snake heads were seen at the ends of all the pillars and rafters. Zhangmin ordered some people to tie knives onto sticks to cut them; the snake heads disappeared when the blade came near yet emerged again when the knife moved away.

Finally, they wrapped all the ends of the pillars and rafters with paper, but it seemed that something was rustling inside the paper, resembling the sound of crawling.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

This month is the annual Star Wars Reads celebration. Star Wars Reads combines the love of a galaxy far, far away and the joy of reading.

Star Wars Reads 2018 Printable Activity Kit and Posters: Plan your own Star Wars event with this amazing party kit, complete with party invitations, posters, and activities for kids to adults. Click here for goodies!

There will be events around the world sponsored by Star Wars publishers, so keep your eye on the Star Wars Reads Facebook page for more information.

Last year during the Halloween Countdown I posted about how Star Wars storytelling has incorporated the Halloween tradition.

(In particular, check out the General Grievous Halloween audiocast! This was an audiocast recorded by Matthew Wood as General Grievous and released on StarWars.com for Halloween of 2005. It was re-released on October 31, 2014. Today you (or your trick-or-treaters) can feel the Force of fright! Download this free audiocast to bring Star Wars scares to your October!)

***


This year, Star Wars is knocking it out of the ballpark with new publications Are You Scared, Darth Vader?, one of the best Star Wars picture books I’ve ever read (and a terrific tribute to Halloween!), and the Tales from Vader’s Castle limited comic series, inspired by classic Hammer Horror films. I can’t recommend these enough!

* Here’s an interview with the author of Are You Scared, Darth Vader?.

* Here’s an interview with the creative team behind Tales from Vader’s Castle!

“And the great things about Star Wars is that hope is at its center, which is a wonderful message on the scariest night of the year. No matter how many things go bump in the night, no matter how scary the dark side seems, light will always win.”

- Cavan Scott about Tales from Vader’s Castle

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)

(Photo by myINQI.)

Today I’d like to share an eerie and atmospheric piece from AntiqueArcheology.com. The comments related additional stories are perfect for the season, too!

Check out “Five Haunted Back Roads in America You’ve Got to Take: Local legends of phantom cars, ghosts, and murders provoke curiosity for the unknown.”

Here’s an excerpt:

Jogger’s Hill - Thornton, Colorado

Let this be a warning: If you’re in Thornton and you’re headed out for an evening drive, let somebody know where you’re going. Or better yet, just don’t go. About 20 minutes north of Denver in the foothills less than on hour outside Golden Gate Canyon State Park sits this Colorado town. The story goes that one night, a jogger was out on a solo run on Riverdale Road, which leads to a popular hilltop overlook with a great view of the city lights. Out of the quiet night came a speeding car, careening into the jogger, who was left to die alone in the darkness on the side of the road. Forever restless and angry at his fate, they say the jogger haunts this back road, looking for his killer in every passing car. He especially likes to creep up on people who park at the top what is now called Jogger’s Hill. Word is, if you kill your lights and engine, he’ll think you’re the one who hit him. Folks have reported hearing sounds of quick feet running toward them followed by angry fists beating the sides of their cars and handprints appearing on the windows as though the jogger is outside trying to get a look at his killer inside. Seriously, don’t go up there.

Read the complete article here.

eldritchhobbit: (Halloween)
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(Photo by KYghost.)

It’s time for me to praise another amazing podcast I discovered this year. I highly recommend the podcast Red Handed, in which hosts Suruthi and Hannah, in their own words, “jump head first into all manner of macabre madness. We cover everything from big time serial killers (and those you may never have heard of), to hauntings, possessions, disturbing mysteries, bizarre whodunits and basically anything that tickles our creepy fancy. So, join us, plug in, sit back and prepare for scares.”

Hannah and Suruthi share a wonderful dynamic and wicked sense of humor, while always treating victims and serious topics with respect. Their research and commentary is not to be missed.

If you’re brave of heart and strong of stomach, I suggest checking out their Halloween Special Part 1 (Episode 19) and Part 2 (Episode 20). Unlike most episodes, in which the hosts discuss one case or story together, in these episodes the two go back and forth, sharing brief sketches of creepy history, each attempting to freak out the other.

If you’re looking for something less harrowing for your Halloween listening, check out How Not to Fake Your Death (Episode 41). Canoe do you think you are?

On a darker note, the hosts also tackle tragic cases such as the Moors Murders of 1963-1965 in/around Manchester, England (in Episodes 50 and 51). The horror of those murders was the inspiration for the haunting song “Suffer Little Children” by The Smiths. You can read the lyrics here.



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