Friday, October 31, 2014


Miss Fern and the Jack O’ Lantern

Miss Fern taught elementary school. She was one of those spinster types—a tall, reedy woman with hooded eyes and a bit of a beaky nose.

She had thin lips that never smiled and a face that had never worn a lick of makeup; her dresses were too long and her legs too thin.

She was the kind of person who wrote outraged letters to newspapers and dreamed of making citizens' arrests.

She told people off in stores for queue jumping, admonished teenagers for speaking too loudly--she was always complaining about something.

In short, she was one huge, monumental pain in the ass.

On the last day of her life she woke at 6, scolded the cat for dripping milk on the floor (only three drops), had a dry slice of toast with weak tea, got dressed and went to school where she would sadistically torture (as usual) little Timmy Meeks and anyone else she felt like giving holy hell to.


Yes, people like Miss Fern did compensate for their lack of humanity and for their prejudice and nastiness.

They were losers in life who sought to feel better about themselves by striving to make as many people as miserable as they could.

She had her favorites to pick on but the most fun was targeting little Timmy. Perhaps it was his thick glasses and buck teeth or it might have been something else, like his timidity or the fact that everyone knew his father beat him. Whatever it was, Miss Fern picked on him the most.

“If Timmy Meeks can give us his attention for a moment…We’re not interrupting you; Mr. Meeks from studying your stubby fingers are we?”

He would answer her without ever being fresh because if he didn't it might all end in a visit to the Principal and Mrs. Wadd was nearly as bad as Miss Fern because she thought Miss Fern was ‘a great teacher of the old school.’

Now on this, the last Halloween morning Miss Fern was ever going to see; it happened to be quite sunny and mild. And because it was so warm, the attendants at Briarcliff Care Home were lax. Two of them actually failed to lock the facility up properly.

Desmond Oliver the night porter didn’t lock up nor did Jess Cummings the day supervisor.

Lester Muggs realized it and as crazy as he was made a dash for it.

He just darted across the lawn, stealing some clothes off a clothesline and went on his way.

He had been in Briarcliff ever since he had murdered his mother.

He was declared unfit to stand trial. He really was unfit because he actually was more of a gentle giant than a murderer; he just wasn’t wrapped quite tightly enough.

The day passed with Lester stealing pies off window sills and some fruit off a vegetable stand.

By dusk he was beginning to notice all the children out and about in their Halloween costumes. He smiled and nodded for there in the far reaches of his muddled mind he recalled the holiday of candy and fun.

The thing that struck him most was how great the pumpkins looked lit with candles inside.

He wanted one desperately. He finally spotted the perfect one sitting at an open window. As he reached for it someone screeched at him, a woman with a thin, scratchy voice.

"Just what do you think you’re doing?!"

Yes, that’s right it was Miss Fern looking furious and loving every second of it.

“You’re a thief that’s what you are. A thief and nothing else! I’m going to call the police."

It happened while she was on the phone; well actually it happened after she hung up.

Lester crept up on her and she never heard a thing.

She hung up the phone and just as she whirled around to put the fear of god in the thief, she saw the knife.

She opened her mouth to scream but that’s when Lester cut her head off and then went to work on hollowing the head out. After all, he wanted it to look right.

He was still admiring his handiwork when the cops drove up.

They didn’t see it right away; they were staring at the headless corpse. But then they saw the big oafish fellow sitting and pointing toward the windowsill.

“It’s a Jack O' Lantern," he said, "You see?”

And it was. Only it was Miss Fern’s head with a lit candle stuck onto the tongue.

Her dead eyes were glazed and were looking up as if she was waiting for something.

"Happy Halloween," Lester said. “I’ll go with you now. Only I’d like to take my Jack O Lantern too, may I?”

Copyright © Carole Gill 2011     

House of Horrors Anthology contains this and
many more stories!




Enjoy! And stay safe! 


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cult Classic: Carnival of Souls!

I don't know about you, but this scared me. I saw it on television when I was a teen and it really frightened me, although the fear factor is more eerie than anything.

The film was independently made on a very low budget but that never infringed upon its popularity. It became a cult classic.

The story is simple. A car crashes off of a bridge. There is a lone survivor (Mary). We see her looking dazed as she comes out of the river. Everything will be fine or will it? She survived, didn't she? Sure, she did. I saw her walk out of the water!

The film is at its most effective when we see what Mary sees. We feel her confusion, her deafness. When she's in a department store and everything goes silent--we feel her isolation and fear.

And when she can't get anything on her car radio but creepy organ music, it's almost too much to bear. The fright level in this film is high and its achieved without violence of any kind. No blood, gore, axes in the head or a copious amount of dead teenagers.

When playing at the church where she was previously hired as organist, she begins to play something the Vicar doesn't like. He asks her to leave.  She's confused because some force was making her play this discordant, weird music.

For further eerie embellishment, there is a ghoulish looking man who keeps following her. He's here there and everywhere. When she goes to see a doctor expecting to get help, creepy man is there. The scene where he turns around in the doctor's chair is beyond scary!

The lead is good. Candace Hilligoss is properly frightened and bewildered and the creepy man could not be better. He was also the director of the film, Herk Harvey.

The dance pavillion at an abandoned resort is used to the greatest effect. I don't want to say more than that, just in case you've miss this, the original and best version. I will say that everything is tied up and there are no loose ends. I don't mind a thought provoking climax to a film or book for that matter but I don't like to be left feeling I was cheated. This film does not cheat. It gives you chills beyond belief.

Shot in black and white, there is great use of shadow to enhance the menace and the utter creepiness. This is one of my all-time fave films. See it and you will see what I mean.

Here's the trailer. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Dormaine G. Author of Occult Fiction! Not To Be Missed!

Author Bio

I may be a nurse by profession but an author by heart. I have been writing stories for many years, both in my head and on paper because I’ve always had a love for books ever since spending Saturdays at the library as a young child. Within a book, the mind can travel to worlds of the imagination and the beyond.

I finally took the plunge and published my first novel last year, a young adult urban fantasy titled Connor and two adult horror short stories tit led Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess and Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess: Soulless . Micco, Anguta’s Reign, a psychological thriller, will be released November 3rd 2014. They are just the beginning of many more books to come as I stay locked up in my office in Colorado spinning more tales

Micco, Anguta’s Reign

Revelation can be a disheartening truth

     Micco, a captivating Native American man with a desirable physique and statuesque features, radiates a mysterious allure. Living on the reservation with his unapproachable father, he doesn’t believe in the old ways and works as a cop in the local town. The only reason he lives on the land is Nara, his childhood friend and the love of his life, who is married to a cruel reservation man.

     Waking up in the heart of a murderous scene, he flees for his life, unfamiliar with his surroundings or how he arrived there. To his horror, he’s assigned to the case. As he works with the local detective, more murders transpire with unusual, terrifying sightings of wolves.

     His behavior starts to drastically change, forcing others to take notice. Although trying to avoid the inevitable, Micco is forced to accept the undesirable truth, unable to fight what has been awakened, and all that he has forgotten is finally revealed. 


     After taking notes, he walked into another room, a bedroom, to catch his breath and inhale cleaner air. Not that it was much better. There were bloodstains on the floor and across the bed. By now the odor clung to his nostrils but at least there were no flies in here.

      He looked around for something, anything that gave a hint that he was here last night. He checked in the closet and took in the bloody sheets. As he bent down to check under the bed, he heard a peculiar sound. He stood up to get a better idea of what it was. It was a scratching noise of some kind coming from inside the room. It sounded familiar but he didn’t know from where or why it was recognizable. Peering around, he couldn’t find the source in any direction.

     Without warning, a blinding, flashing memory of screaming, running and piercing noise took hold of him. He grabbed his head, squeezing it, trying to stop the distorted thoughts. His eyes were blinking uncontrollably. A sharp twinge ran up his back. It was so excruciating that his muscles contracted, contorting with a loss of control. He tried to remain silent, though to no avail. It felt like someone was cutting him open from the back.
    Just as suddenly as it began, it stopped.

    Micco found himself on the floor, shirt drenched with perspiration, panting like his heart was about to jump out from his chest.
    Holy shit, what was that?

    He stayed there on the cold hardwood floor for a minute, gathering his breath and thoughts. He’d never experienced anything like that before. The full memories were gone but he did recall the screaming.

     A memory from last night? Please don’t make me have to go through that pain every time I remember something.

     Rolling over to get up, he saw a shirt tucked in the corner. It looked familiar; it was his own... 

You will find Dormaine G. online:

Friday, October 24, 2014

Halloween Treat: COMPLETE Story from House of Horrors!



“Tell me somethin’, do you ever get nightmares, you know. About stuff, Hank?”

Hank was fixing his bow tie. He was only three and a half feet tall but when he was dressing for a show he felt like Fred Astaire. He sighed. “Sure, after what we been through. Why wouldn’t I?”

“Yeah, well—it’s now that counts, right?”

“Sure is, my friend. Our luck turned around didn’t it? Don’t I always say to look on the bright side?”

It was true. Tommy always helped him. He always would. That was why they were pals. Friends forever—literally.

They were part of a circus. Granted it was small, but it made up for that by its uniqueness. And like any circus, aside from midgets, it had animal acts, performers and clowns. What’s a circus without clowns?

Yup, considering its size, this circus was pretty popular. People like to be entertained. Times were hard in this, the third year of what would come to be known as, the Great Depression. Yet, despite that, people came; all kinds of folks. Rubes and hicks mainly—because they never played the big cities; just small towns. Sebastian said it was better that way. They didn’t want any trouble. Not that they couldn’t handle it and then some.

Yet another show was about to start and the boys were glad. When they heard the brass band start up with Entry of the Gladiators they were in ecstasy. Tommy rubbed his hands. “That’s it. Getting all revved up now, how about you, kid?”

Hank smiled. “Yeah. It’s magic, ain’t it?”

They both laughed heartily at that. When the music stopped they heard Sebastian go into his spiel. “Ladies and Gentleman—prepare yourselves for the best circus show you’ll ever see. . . ”

No hecklers tonight, well one only; some yokel showing off to his girlfriend. The boys could hear him making loud noises and acting like a real smart ass.

The boys got ready for their entrance. Sebastian liked them to come out first and greet the audience, talk to them and get a sense of what kind of folks they were. They liked it too because they enjoyed sniffing the air. People’s blood always smelled so different. It was amazing.

They locked eyes onto the heckler as he was still going strong.

“Could be worse,” Tommy said. “Could be a few of them.”

Just then the heckler called them both runts. Runts, they didn’t like. Runts did more than rankle. But the stupid bastard finally shut up when the clowns made their appearance.

There were three of them. They wore distinctive clown make up. One was sad—there were tears painted under his eyes and his drooping lips were done up artfully. He had learned makeup from another clown he killed and ate. Well, no one’s perfect.

The other two clowns were also uniquely made up. Happy was the jolly one. He had this big ass smile plastered across his face.

Sometimes he had the remains of food stuck in the corners of his mouth.

“Hey, that ain’t lipstick, is it?”

The two other clowns would often tease him.

“Oh shit!” He’d invariably say. “I am a messy eater!”

He was; he often had bits of flesh and blood scattered all over his costume. Lou used to admonish him. In the last town Lou actually found a half-eaten eyeball stuck onto Happy’s oversized shoe. He gave it to him for that. Lou didn’t like to yell but Happy had to get it together.

Still, they remained friends.

The third clown’s make up was more unusual. He was the clowns’ clown. Dave was the one the other two would pretend to pick on. His make-up was very old fashioned. It was the way clowns were made up in medieval times.

All three began to respond to the audience, especially the children.

They’d make these exaggerated motions. They just mimed; they never spoke. One child had already been chosen by one of them because he was fat. Lou loved fat little boys, all dimply and doughy looking. The last boy he had eaten lasted a whole week! Boy oh boy that little tub of lard was tasty. Happy did him up in a special glaze.

Happy liked to cook.

“It’s gonna be a good show,” Lou said—sounding very upbeat. “I can feel it in my bones.”

That’s when the orchestra started up again; just a few notes, after which Sebastian introduced the trapeze act: the great Waldini and his wife.

These acts, from the trick rider and her horse to the trapeze couple, including the brass band as well as the lion tamer and lions, were odd looking, expressionless. They performed well enough though. It was only when you looked closely at them that there was a sense something was radically wrong, as in weird, fucking and odd.

Only one person noticed. He had seen the show a few times, following them from town to town throughout Ohio. He was studying the acts. Something wasn’t right about it; something just stunk about it. He didn’t know what it was, but he was determined to find out. It would make his career as a reporter, he felt sure.

He watched the lion tamer strut out. The guy was attired in a glittering, white outfit; pith helmet, whip and everything. The whip cracked as the tamer barked out commands. The lions growled a few times, nothing remarkable. In fact if anything, they looked bored. It seemed their growls and raised paws didn’t have a sense of realism which was most strange.

The midgets came out next. Dressed as always, very dapper. They wore make up, nothing too theatrical, or clownish. It was just enough to be interesting. Their faces were made up so that they looked like manikins. Their faces were white and their eyelids were lined in black. They wore lipstick and circles of rouge, too—their hair was slicked back like George Raft’s and they flirted a lot with the ladies. They seemed mischievous.

Actually they were interesting to watch because they were animated and lively. The young man didn’t think anything untoward about them or the clowns—not then.


They loved chow time. They ate around a big table in Sebastian’s trailer. It had been some movie star’s house car in the twenties. The rumor was it had been Mae West’s. Whatever the story, it was ace.

Everyone loved it particularly, Sebastian. In fact it was his home. He had his own bathroom and kitchen area and bunks too—like plush sofas they were.

The clowns always behaved themselves when they came in. They were always polite and made a real effort to be pleasant.

The boys (Tommy and Hank) were dressed well; they’d shower in the special shower tent before. They were very fastidious; much more so than the clowns. The clowns had to be reminded of personal hygiene periodically, but Sebastian didn’t mind. They were okay guys.

He smiled at the phrase. That was one of the 20th century expressions he loved.

They were all enthused about the town and the show and everyone started speaking at once. Sebastian had a few things to say but he bided his time. He’d save it for last.

He was grinning at them. His gaunt face and pronounced cheekbones gave him a skull-like look sometimes. He could have altered his appearance from the tall, imposing man he was but he didn’t.

Every so often he did, but only if he had to. At last he spoke. “I have a special menu for you guys tonight.” This he said as he revealed a beautiful roast.

The clowns were excited. “Dave said he smelled something cooking earlier. Didn’t you, Dave?”

Dave agreed. “I bet I know what it is!”

Happy and Lou nodded. “He’s been driving us nuts all day. Saying how he can’t wait to bite into a nice fat buttocks. Anyone we know, Sebastian?”

Sebastian started to answer but looked over at Tommy and Hank.

They were looking as though they felt ignored. “Now boys, no one’s forgotten about you.” He said as he handed them two tumblers. “This is fresh, it’s nowhere near clotted.”

They oohed and awed and sniffed the giant tumblers.

“Rich, ruby port! Might we know where that came from?”

Sebastian shook his finger in a good natured but teasing way.

“Don’t pry it’s rude. Let’s just say that heckler paid for calling you guys runts.”

Hank and Tommy clapped their little hands together. “Thank you!” they cried.

Dave wanted to know where the rest of him was.

“He’s been put away for tomorrow’s grub, is that okay?”

Happy and Lou were shaking their heads. “Dave, you gotta cut down on the calories. You’re going to get too fat for your clown suit!”

Tommy started to laugh which only inflamed Lou. Well the clowns and the midgets used to argue, coming to blows occasionally. Of course the midgets always won. They were little, but they were strong as vampires are.

Sebastian gently admonished them. He loved his boys as he called them. They had been tossed around from circus to circus. In the last place they had been, they were beaten constantly. When Sebastian saw them, they were almost dead.

He killed their tormenter, but by that time, they were both gone. He raised them up because he would not see them dead. When they rose up and realized what he had done, they cried. Vampires do that. Sebastian had seen it happen a lot.

He explained it all to them. “You’ll live forever, boys! You’ll never be afraid. You’ll never be harmed or frightened. Isn’t that good?”

Eventually they grew into their undead existence as vampires do.

That was just after the war in Europe. It was 1918 when they were turned.

Sebastian’s circus had grown quite a bit since then. There were the acts he put in. They weren’t real people or animals. They were creations of his sorcery. That was Sebastian’s story. Everyone in a circus has a story.

Tommy was teasing the clowns again. Why the midget picked on them was anybody’s guess. Sebastian didn’t like it. He felt sorry for them because they were life’s victims too, but in a different way.

The three of them were former mental patients. Yes sir, right out of Storeyville, Georgia. They had this sadist bastard of a doctor, Dr. Nichols who liked to do experiments on them. When they had enough of his hole drilling and failed (but painful) attempts at lobotomies—or was it just torture by another name—they escaped; walked right out of that house of horrors.

Sebastian always wondered when they became cannibals. He had asked them but they’d laugh and ‘say never you mind;’ although they did fess up to eating Dr. Nichols and two orderlies.

He told them that it didn’t matter. He said they’d have jobs and a place to stay as long as they liked. Of course they’d have to learn clown stuff. They were eager and in no time were performing perfectly.

Sebastian could see how much they looked up at him. It was because of all that sorcery stuff. He was very accomplished.

It was funny how they found one another. Sebastian caught them ripping open a family of four. The kids were nothing more than ribs and hair but these three guys were still gnawing away on the father and mother when Sebastian called out: “Hey, what are you doing?”

Whereupon the three threatened him. That was when he showed them. He had the remains of their meal rise up from the ground. Up this stuff went, all pieces of flesh and gore–spinning and turning—coming closer and closer to them!

They screamed but Sebastian only laughed and began to taunt them. First by having the gnawed parents begin to dance with one another.

It got so bad that the guys pleaded for him to stop. “What kinda shit is this? Who the hell are you?”

That was what he was waiting for. “I am Sebastian and I come from another place and time.” He told them how he had made a pact with Satan so that he could live forever. “It was easy—I gave up my soul. What the hell did I need it for? It was no use to me. Not during the Black Death it wasn’t. That plague killed one-third of Europe in the fourteenth century.”

He told them how he could raise the dead and make things move.
He often spoke about the many centuries he had lived through.

The midgets were fascinated by stories of the little people and Sebastian never disappointed them. He had a number of special people (he hated the word freaks) he had saved from one circus or sideshow over the years. He came to think of them as family.


Even now, these meals were special family dinners. Sebastian ate regular food but the others didn’t. The midgets only subsisted on blood whereas the clowns were meat eaters. Real meat eaters.

It was toward the end of the meal that Sebastian brought the subject up of the young man. That got their attention. In fact, Dave dropped the eye ball he was nibbling and Tommy nearly spilled a goblet of blood. Now that would have stained the table cloth.

“There’s this young man. I don’t know what his racket is, but I find him highly suspicious. I think we will have to deal with him soon.”

You could have heard a pin drop.

“No shit.” Hank said.

Sebastian nodded. “The sooner we take care of him, the better.”

They found him talking to the lion tamer. It struck the clowns funny and the midgets too, but it didn’t make Sebastian laugh because he was too intent on his purpose.

“May I help you?”

The guy turned around and smiled, albeit nervously. “Is there anything wrong with him?” He asked gesturing toward the blanked-eyed lion tamer. “Is he in a stupor? I mean is he alright?”

Hank and Tommy sauntered up from behind Sebastian. “What’s it to you, bub?”

The man shrugged. “Nothing really,” he smiled, trying to appear casual. But when the three clowns suddenly appeared, he stood up to run.

Flight or fight.

However since it didn’t look like he’d get away, he tried to reason.
“I’m a reporter. . . I’d like to do a feature story on your circus.
That’s all. . . ”

“No kidding!” the clowns replied in unison. Then they all turned to look at Sebastian.

“We can’t afford any publicity. It’s just the way it is, the way it’s always been. Let me explain... ”


The last thing he saw were the teeth. Long, yellow teeth sharpened to a fine point. They were covered in his blood. He knew that because he felt so weak.

Still, he hadn’t been conscious most of the time they were feeding. And really he started to weaken when the midgets were draining him. They assured him they wouldn’t kill him though because the clowns hated dried-out food.

When they said that, he screamed. Naturally it didn’t help him.

Sebastian liked a good screamer, and so did his guys. After all, they worked hard to put on a good show and they liked some entertainment in return. Why not?

Sebastian waved his arms and the toy-like circus performers rose up from wherever they were: the lion tamer, the lions, the horse and rider, even the great Waldini and his wife. They rose as the toys they were, created by Sebastian’s sorcery.

He nodded toward the brass band to start playing. It was amazing. All those toys—obeying as they did. Sure enough, the circus music started, Entry of the Gladiators, Sebastian’s favorite.

The lively tune boomed out, masking the reporter’s agonized screams. In fact as he slipped into the great and vast beyond, he smiled because the closer he got to death the more he didn’t mind. And really, whatever came after this had to be a whole lot better... "

Copyright   ©  2013   Carole Gill

This story inspired my new novel, Circus of Horrors!

It's just one of the stories in:
House of Horrors 
100k words of terror!


scary halloween photo: See something scary? dccfc891d3ea9825e4e8afc115c7aef1.gif

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Countdown to Halloween: WOLF CREEK

For sheer terror this is a must-see for any horror fan.

Most horror films don't scare me but this film starring Australian actor, John Jarrett as the lunatic from hell, left me frightened out of my mind. I do not scare easy. I write very dark fiction and frankly, more often than not, I'm not affected by what I tend to read or watch in film. Not so with this one!

Jarrett was a little too convincing in the part! I shudder whenever I see him in other films. He was brilliant in this! Really.

The thought that there are, among us, real monstrous killers, sadists, evil people capable of the worst violence and torture is what terrifies me. The stranger anyone can stumble across when they're the most vulnerable, is one hell of a horrifying thought. Can you think of anything more terrifying?

Here's the trailer for a good taster:

There's a lot of room in Australia for a lunatic to exist unnoticed. Just the way it is. A country which is a continent has the vastness to provide such an opportunity. Since first viewing this film, I could not stop thinking about that. About what it would be like to have no neighbors within miles. You could do anything. You were free to exist as you liked, however you liked. And if you were a murderous psychopath—well, the mind boggles.

The abduction of British tourist Peter Falconio and the assault of his girlfriend Joanne Lees in July 2001 by Bradley John Murdoch in the Northern Territory, are cited as one of the influences. This hit home with me because I live in West Yorkshire, and used to pass the newsagent's shop that Peter Falconio's dad owned.

I always say that the monsters among us is the reason I write horror.

The plot of the film is simple. Three backpackers travelling through the outback, sadly meet up with a lunatic called, 'Mick.' That's when the horror begins. There is nothing more horrifying than knowing you're trapped and there is no way out. No screaming will help; this is a dark world you have stumbled into. The king of the castle answers to no one. Only the king happens to be the murderous psychopath who has you in his clutches.

I don't like torture films. In my opinion, this film does not fall into that category. It's above that. It doesn't need to be sensational; it's put together too well. And because it is, it is the most frighteningly real depiction of violent lunacy and entrapment I have ever seen.  It's the horror that exists throughout the world. It's the horror that has always been there, somewhere. We can, if we're lucky, avoid it but it's out there.

The next time you read about people disappearing with no trace ever being found of them, I bet you will think of Mick. The others in the cast: Cassandra Magrath, Kestie Morassi and Nathan Phillips are excellent as the hapless backpackers.

The film isn't based on one true story, it is influenced by the Falconio case and the Ivan Milat Backpacker murders. This isn't just something out of someone's head and because it isn't, it has the very uncomfortable feel of reality and unimaginable horror.

Confession: I've only seen the film once. It lives in the DVD cabinet, feared and ignored but there; its presence disturbing enough. Just knowing it’s there is unnerving. I write horror and have seen many horror films in my time but this one got to me the most. It is darker than dark. It has redefined terror. It is the stuff of nightmares but unlike a dream, it can happen. I guess that's the most frightening thing about it.

By the way, Murdoch's trial was still under way at the time of the film's initial release in Australia, and for this reason the Northern Territory court placed an injunction on the film's release there in the belief that it could influence the outcome of the proceedings. Many continue to be misled into thinking that the entire movie is based on one true story. It isn't. It is influenced by other murders around Australia, like the Ivan Milat Backpacker Murders and the Peter Falconio murder case.

Watch the film and you will feel the evil. Really!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Why Do I Write Horror? Well--!!!

Albert Fish 

I thought I'd put up a photo of Albert Fish, a sexual predator who happened to be a cannibal. He preyed on children and killed them horrifically. See, there's that word again: horror. He was a monster from hell in human form. Google Grace Budd and find out about the real bogey-man who murdered her. He's just one of many. Too many! Isn't that horrible?
Grace Budd
Only yesterday I heard the horrific story about a pregnant woman waiting for a bus in London who was robbed and wound up losing her unborn baby. If that isn’t pure horror what is?

I always say, how can I not write horror? It’s on the news. Acts of terror and murder are global; they happen across the world and very possibly in our own towns and neighborhoods. There are serial killers all over the place: child killers, team killers (those working together to cause murder and mayhem) there are loan killers, stalkers, hot heads that descend into road rage and become violent lunatics. Often the target of their rage is murdered or maimed. Many parents have set up nanny cams so they can monitor the baby sitter who might be okay but might not be okay. Pennywise, move over! We have real killers of children and toddlers.

To those people who ‘cannot understand, fathom or reason’ why on earth any ‘normal person’ would write horror…I say, open a history book. Begin with the savagery of mankind going back to ancient times and continue on with The Inquisition, the genocide of indigenous peoples in the Americas and elsewhere and be sure to consider slavery (whenever it happened or wherever it happened)..

The Holocaust, all holocausts, genocides, ethnic cleansing—I mean it’s there. It’s documented.

There are also horrors we all may face at one time or another. We have personal demons that cause us anguish and pain. That’s pretty horrible. We can all pretend we don’t see these things or know about them. But we have to at least admit they are there. We must, admit that horror exists in the world and it always has existed. Sadly it probably always will.

An outlet for us, for our fear of death (read about Ebola lately?), could be to write a horror story about zombies or vampires. Fantasizing about immortality can’t be that bad.

We owe the undead a lot! Writers give us sexy vampires, monstrous ones and cute ones we can date in high school. Nothing wrong with fantasy, are you kidding? It’s better than thinking about what happened to Ted Bundy’s victims or Jack the Ripper’s.

So there you have it. Whatever draws you to horror, if in fact you are a fan. If you are, you have a huge choice of horror fiction to pick from (yes and films too) you can watch or read slasher stuff or not. You can giggle about zombies breaking your door down, or you can wonder what it would be like if a vampire approached you, maybe you’d like it?

We have horror because it’s there. Google the news and see what horror story is the big one today. Is it a missing teen’s body that was found or is it something else?

It’s out there. I know it is, you know it is—no point in denying it. Maybe horror fiction and film is our defense against what frightens us! On the other hand it could be an embodiment of all that frightens us.

If the world were a utopia, there would be no horror. I’d bet Dracula’s immortality on it.

Saturday, October 18, 2014


Among the stories are two about Jack the Ripper
Here is an excerpt from one of them.


"He had been choosy that night he killed. There were after all several he had thought suitable for dispatch. But then he spotted HER, his chosen. You are the first but not the last, mind. Not the last by any means.

She had been walking along Whitechapel Road, when he began following her. She glanced over her shoulder a few times. Then finally when she realized she was being followed she stopped.

He knew she’d be smiling. “Why, ain’t you the gent?”

She had sized him up, drunk as she was.

“Three pennies and you can do what you like for as long as you like. Then I’ll do it to you.”

He smiled and nodded. Then he made a courtly gesture for her to lead the way.

Buck’s Row.

She began to ready herself. While she was in the process of hiking her skirt up, he grabbed her by the throat. She tried to scream, but with his fingers on her throat she could only gasp. Still, she put up a good struggle, kicking and trying to free herself.

He held her fast. “It’s time now…”

He was wondering if she heard him say that. Not that it would have mattered. Still, he wondered.

“It’s time for Mr. Rough and Ready to go to work.”

She knew. He saw her eyes widen—the light wasn’t good but he could just make out the look of terror in her eyes. She trembled with the first slice—but he kept on slicing—something like a sexual thrill was flowing over him, causing him to shudder. Now for the first time in his life he felt himself harden.

He smiled. He could cry with joy later. There wasn’t time now. Just time to shudder and pant and keep slicing.

The feeling eased. He stopped. It was time to leave. He only glanced down at her once. Just a quick glance but he tried so hard to remember everything so he could recall it later..."

End of excerpt

"There is no doubt that she soars above the endless parade of independent horror authors to shine as a true star in the darkness. With the brilliant anthology House of Horrors she proves why she is a perennial favorite. To put it simply, this is a great assembly of tales anyone would be proud to have in their collection"

~Joshua Skye
Dark Media

"I grew up with horror legends such as King, Koontz, Poe, Shelley, Stoker and I added Gill to that list."

C. Gaydas


Packed with stories of vampires, zombies, murderous midgets, demon clowns, evil dolls, haunted cemeteries   a real shop of horrors, taxidermy gone haywire, serial killers and more!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

EXCERPT Vampire Retribution from House of Horrors 99CENTS!


It was their last kill; they hadn’t fed well for a long time so when they saw the young couple, they sprang out of the deep shadows desperate for their sustenance. The girl screamed but her scream died in her throat when Mara tore her larynx apart and the girl’s blood poured like a great black fountain in the light of a jaundiced moon.

Yaga, her mate, was feasting on the young man who lay torn and bleeding.  Each of them feeding voraciously for they knew the blood would soon stop. That was why vampires always went for the blood-engorged organs first, drinking and savoring the precious nectar.

It was ecstatic—almost sensual and they both moaned with pleasure as they fed. But then she sensed something untoward and glanced up.

She hissed when she saw them.

There were five armed men led by a cleric carrying a huge cross. “Kill them!” he ordered.

Kill them?! How ironic to kill the undead—surely not.

But all vampires and those who killed them knew they could in fact be destroyed.

“In the name of Christ, you are gone!” The cleric cried as he swung wildly and hit each of them with his cross.

Mara screeched as her flesh began to burn and the air was filled with the acrid stench of such burning.

She called for her mate: “Yaga! I burn! Help me!”

But he burned too and could not help her.

The cleric was not moved. He hated these creatures for he knew them to be monsters. “Die you demons from hell!
If his cross burned their flesh, the swords were used for another purpose, one he had no business engaging in, for he was sworn not to kill.

Yet he could not stop himself. For his hatred was too great. Finally, he grabbed a sword. “I wish to do it myself!” he cried.

It took only two swipes to decapitate each of them.

Their heads flew from their bodies rolling toward the church.
 “See how they bleed!”

And bleed they did. A veritable torrent of blood poured forth from their corpses to pool at the edge of the church—the cleric’s church.

The men were pleased for they had aided their leader--this leader of the vampire destroyers.

Lately they had caused great carnage, these creatures from hell. Countless drained corpses had been found.

And if that wasn’t horrific enough, what was also discovered was their proclivity to feast upon their prey.

“It is not enough to drain God’s creatures; they commit worse sacrilege by feasting upon them!”

He wondered when it would end and how it would end.

Finally, he had them buried beyond his church. “Make haste lest you be seen!”
The men hurried to collect the mutilated remains of those they had destroyed.

They did not know that something or someone watched from the distance
(End of excerpt) 



Wednesday, October 15, 2014



'They rise from their crypts, these disgraced warriors who did not reach Valhalla but were consigned to ignoble burial.

You can see them as they stand atop their burial mounds, sword in hand, for they are still corporeal, though they reek of decomposing flesh and dusty bone.

Their stench, is all pervasive, the rotting corruption of themselves—it alerts all to their passage and the terror this night will bring.

“They have risen!”

An old man tries to warn the others of his village. But these undead spring quickly toward him like the monstrous predatory creatures they are, sleek and strong—shape-shifting demonic beings whose sole purpose is to rise from their own rot and destroy the living.

The old man cries out once but no more for they are chewing through his throat, ripping his poor flesh to shreds.

Great thick torrents of blood pour forth, appearing black in the eerie glow of a jaundiced moon.

Others begin to come forth too each rising armed with killing weapons, weapons alas not used in battle.

For you see these undead beasts were not warriors, but ran from battle in fright. And for their shame they were disowned and damned, their punishment was to be run through with blunt swords.

Yet though their executioners have long since died, these creatures have returned for revenge for they are mindless killing creatures and nothing more.

The village yonder is their target. For this was home to their punishers, those people who deemed them cowards.

They move en masse, a frightening sight to behold.

A courting couple see them and try to flee, but are soon overpowered.
Each is pulled away, to be devoured, while still living.

Their agonized cries fill the night sky—and as their blood pours from their torn flesh, it is also consumed for it is the elixir the Draugr needs.
And then suddenly, in between the scream of a howling wind and the cry of an owl the boy and girl are fully consumed.

Bones crunch and flesh is ripped apart. Then when they are dead, their mutilated remains are discarded for these undead feed only upon living flesh.'



"There is no doubt that she soars above the endless parade of independent horror authors to shine as a true star in the darkness. With the brilliant anthology House of Horrors she proves why she is a perennial favorite. To put it simply, this is a great assembly of tales anyone would be proud to have in their collection"

~Joshua Skye

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Sideshow Has Come To Town!

I am so pleased to announce publication of Sideshow a very unique anthology. It is published by Visionary Press Collaborative and is the brainchild of Author Mikel Classen, Editor in Chief of Netbound Publications. 

Rob Miller is the editor. He also has his own story in the collection. The cover design and illustrations are by the very talented, Melissa Stevens.


Come one, come all! The Sideshow has come to town! This isn't your usual freak show, we have wonders to show you that you will not find anyplace else. Marvel at the Human Illumine, lose yourself in the Amazing Mirror Maze. Come for the Last Show of the Day! We have it all. But be careful, not all is as it appears...danger may lurk in the shadows. There are some things that should be kept in the dark. Ticket please...


Melissa Stevens 

Phil Hickes 

S. MacLeod 

Leigh M. Lane 

Tina Swain 

Shawn Pfister 

C.B. Doyle 

Carole Gill 

Lisamarie Lamb 

Rob Miller 

E.A. Irwin

Jody Neil Ruth

This is a very special collection of stories you won't soon forget. 
Buy your ticket--or better still, visit Amazon!

Thank you!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Justine: Into the Blood. Book 1 Blood and Passion Series

Born in pre-Revolutionary France and orphaned as a child, Justine Bodeau is taken in by a family friend who employs her as a seamstress. Eventually, she winds up to work in the court of Queen Marie Antoinette. 

A strong-willed survivor, defeat does not occur to her. When she fights off an attack by an aristocrat and kills him, she is given refuge but is soon betrayed and winds up on the streets of Paris, where she is attacked and killed by rogue vampires. But for whatever reason, love will not let her die. 

Justine goes from wishing to be destroyed to wanting to survive, when she feels passion for the one who brought her back, Gascoyne — the one they call the Vampire Prince of Paris.



Before the night became my one world, that of the undead—I enjoyed moonlit walks along the fragrant paths of the gardens of Versailles. Those were romantic times. I was a young lady and had one or two admirers. Whatever advice I had been given about being cautious, I remembered but I was young and foolish more than I was sensible.

There was one courtier, the Duc d’ Amont who rather had my eye. He was quite handsome, dark with smoldering good looks and the air of malice which can be so enticing to a young fool such as I. 

He was always one to compliment me.
“You quite turn my head, young lady. What is your name?”
Well, that was how it started. But that was not how it ended.
“I am Justine, your Excellency.”

When he laughed I did not know why he laughed and felt my cheeks flame.
“Forgive me, sweet. But you are quite amazing. One gets tired of so much at court.”

This he said as he sniffed some snuff from a beautiful jeweled box. “Ah! That is nice. So tell me, you beautiful creature, what do you do in your spare time or do you not have any?”

“I have sir! I am treated most fairly. I could not ask for more.”

After this interlude and some others, I found the Duc’s attention growing more pronounced. When at last he tried to kiss me, he was drunk I and I was frightened.

“Propriety is foolish, Mlle., don’t you wish to know what love is? Or do you know already?”

I hurried away from him. Down the corridor I flew. I wanted to go to someone, to the queen really if I am honest. But I dared not.

So I just went to my own little room near the sewing room where I spent a sleepless night wondering what I should do. I didn’t see him for some time after that and my worry lessened, work took it away. Only an idle mind has time to worry, after all.
If one court season ended new ones began. There were always balls and engagements being planned and gowns to get ready. I was one of twenty busy seamstresses. There didn’t seem to be time for all we had to do and though we tended to work silently, we did always gossip about our lack of time to do our chores.

There were fittings for the Queen and her ladies too. I didn’t care about them; they looked as lovely as usual but she did not. I thought she was looking thinner and pale. I wanted so to offer her comfort but knew I could not. Such an action would be presumptuous.

She wasn’t as chatty with me as she had been in fact there was a marked difference in her behavior. She was more reticent. Gone was the air of happy expectation. She seemed to be sleepwalking through life.

I wondered if she knew I worried about her because of what she did. To my amazement the Queen suggested I attend the first ball of the season. She even offered me a gown, but I was too shy. I chose instead to wear something I had made for myself. It wasn’t a gown as such, it was plain; the sort of dress an ordinary person might wear on a formal occasion. Even while she complimented me, she looked distracted.

I did go to the ball. It was lovely to be able to mill around and not feel I was there as a servant. I was greeted politely by the courtiers. But then my heart nearly stopped when I saw the Duc d’ Amont staring at me.

How had I not anticipated his attending? I felt genuine fright at seeing him. Perhaps it was a sense of foreboding I had, I still cannot be sure. I only remember my feeling of disquiet.

“Ah you are vision of beauty, where others cloak themselves in jewels and finery your beauty needs no such adornment. It would be like dressing the sun up and what with your glorious red hair—you are sunlight itself!”

I nearly scoffed at what I took to be his effusive complements. Not unexpectedly he looked annoyed. If I expected him to stalk off in anger he did not. Instead he suggested I accompany him to an adjoining room. When he saw my worried expression he smiled. “I merely wish to dance with you.”

It would not have been proper for a servant to dance at the ball; attending was one thing and dancing another.

Before I could say anything, he took my hand and led me out. “I know the perfect place,” he said.

The room we went to was a waiting room of sorts for foreign envoys. It was close to the ballroom and we could hear the music.
“May I have this dance?”

I was flattered and found myself relaxing. Enjoy yourself Justine I thought. But instead of dancing, he closed the door and smiled. This was a smile I had not seen on his face before.

What followed was the beginning of the horror. Without a word, he pulled at my gown tearing it. I protested and he slapped me. I grew dizzy and passed out. When I woke I saw him looking down at me.

He laughed. “I have you now!” he cried.

I tried to shout but he hit me again. I managed to reach for a fire poker. He realized and snarled. “You’re a little fireball aren’t you?”

This said, as he tore my gown from me and launched himself at me. I would not let him take me! I begged and threatened but nothing worked.

In the excitement I had dropped the poker. However, I did manage to pick it up and hit his head with it. He looked startled—his eyes began to glaze over and when he fell hard upon me I knew he was dead.

I pushed him off and rushed to the door. I would have to escape. For I felt sure had this been discovered, even the queen would not have been able to save me.
My heart was pounding. Down the hall I rushed, until I found a door that opened onto a terrace. I expected guests to be there, many of the terraces were full of party goers, but not this particular one. Out I stepped. I looked quite a sight, my gown was torn and I knew my hair was disheveled. I paused. Where to go? It’s all well and good to try and flee but in what direction?

I thought to walk to the gates but there were guards. From the state I was in, what would they think? I’d be hauled before the head of the household staff. There was no doubt about that! That was the last thing I wanted.

Then I noticed two people walking toward me, a lady and a gentleman. I am done for I thought. So I ran without thinking, I just rushed in the opposite direction. And horror of horrors I saw I was going to crash into a man. And crash into him, I did.

“I am sorry, Monsieur. I did not mean to rush so.”

He didn’t answer right away, but took me by the arm toward the palace. “You’re not a thief are you, up to mischief or anything like that?”

I protested, I pleaded. But to no avail. Suddenly we stopped. There was enough light for him to see me. “You are a mess! What happened?”
“I was attacked…!”

“What do you mean?”

I began to stutter and found myself unable to go on.

The gentlemen reassured me. “There, there.” he said. “Calm down. Tell me are you hurt? Did someone harm you?”

“Yes! He tried…”

He was waiting for me to go on but I could not. I didn’t want to say what I had to tell him. At last I broke down. “Oh sir, I fought him as hard as I could but he beat me. And…then when he began to have his way with me, I killed him, he’s dead!”

“Dead? Are you sure?”

“Yes. He is that!”

“Do you know his name?”
“The Duc Amont!”

If I thought he would be horrified, he wasn’t. He didn’t even look surprised. “You come with me. I shall help you. I give you my word! Wait here. I will have my driver come.”

Before I could answer he put his cape around me, quite a long cloak it was too. “There, you look fine now. Wait here no one will see you and I will be right back!” He led me into the shadows. “Now wait!”

I did, sobbing as quietly as I could and shaking too. It was all so crazy; I had actually killed a man! It was not to be believed. I had killed an aristocrat! I would be thrown into prison and executed. Of that I was sure. I was one of the common people. Before I could think any more of this, he returned.

“Come,” he said. He hurried me along so quickly, I stumbled. He asked me if I could walk. I said I could.

I had the feeling he was angry, not at me but at what had happened to me. He did say something, nothing I could understand for he spoke in Italian and rapidly. I thought he was excited and upset for me, so he lapsed into his native tongue.
When he realized he stopped. “I am Italian by birth--Monsieur Oriani at your service.”

At last we came to his carriage. He helped me inside. And the carriage was off.
He was speaking a great deal. I tried so hard to listen, but I kept falling asleep. “It is alright. Just rest we will be there soon.”

I did sleep, waking only when the carriage stopped. He helped me out.
“That is it.”

I was surprised for I saw an ordinary looking house. I thought him quite important and expected to see something out of the ordinary.

“It is the home of a friend, on loan to me.” He said. “I will tend to your wounds after I light a fire.”

He made poultices of evil smelling concoctions. “This will help the healing and prevent infection…”

I had deep scratches. They stung and the cool mixture, though it chilled me at first, did ease the pain—still I hardly cared, for I was barely awake. In fact he said I slept nearly two days.

When I woke he gave me broth to drink. It was thin and not at all nice. “I found a cooked chicken in the larder and I have made the broth from it. Please, it is good for you.”

I took it and under his encouraging stare, I sipped it to his satisfaction. I think those were the beginnings of the tenderness I felt.

We didn’t discuss what had occurred. If I thought he’d ask me about myself he did not. Instead he spoke of mundane things to distract me.

I realized I quite liked him; his handsome features and his voice. It was rich sounding and educated.

Time passed strangely through dreams and shadows. I had the sense he was there and then he wasn’t. The dreams stopped but the shadows lasted quite a long time. I was only aware of light and dark and his gentle voice asking me how I was.
When the shadows receded and I was alert he asked me what I was going to do.

“You must have a plan. There is danger everywhere. If others do not understand the danger they are in, they soon will.”

I asked him if he meant the King and Queen. He said he did. “Day by day the people grow more angry. There have already begun to be arrests and there is the talk of more, much more. You can stay here if you like. I will have a servant stay with you and I will come by whenever I can to visit you.”

I would have preferred him to stay, but who was I to make such a suggestion?
He explained he had important business to attend to. But that he would see me often. I watched him leave and was heartsick, but true to his word he brought a servant back that very day, before night fall.

She was a sober looking woman, quite beyond middle age. She was kind and didn’t ask any questions. “Call me Anna,” she said and I did.
She realized I had many questions about her employer and she answered them but her answers only made me want to ask more questions.
In time a routine was established where Monsieur Oriani came by regularly. Anna would always leave when he did.

It was late summer. It was hard to believe that two months had passed. I had begun to wonder why he was keeping me there. Yet, I welcomed his all too brief visits.

When he came, we’d have a quiet meal Anna prepared. I had been fully recovered and was starting to wonder what I should do. Any time I broached the subject of leaving, he told me it wasn’t safe to be about. “There have been more arrests. Even those servants who worked for the palace are being scrutinized. Soon the king and queen will be put on trial.”


“Yes, but plans are being made for their exile!”

If I thought highly of him for having saved me, I regarded him now as a saint. “You are very kind.” I said.

He took my hand and kissed it. “Do not worry, my child. I will protect you.”