Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Misery: Annie Wilkes And A Real-Life Annie Wilkes!

The fan from hell, the fan/stalker lunatic that is the stuff of nightmares. And when the writer is Stephen King, that nightmare is almost too painful to get to know. We feel his pain!

He was, I read, inspired to write Misery by a real encounter which unnerved both him and his wife. He has written about it and it makes for scary reading.

The novel was somewhat different from the film, but that doesn't dilute the power of the movie. A best-selling author with a very popular fiction series gets saved by one Annie Wilkes. She really does save his life before trying to kill him. She carries him away from certain death. Her nursing skills her exceptional but then there's this crazy side to her. It is chilling as it is slowly revealed to us and to her injured patient.

Paul Sheldon, her injured patient soon realizes his predicament. His caregiver is as crazy as batshit. We can see him trying to interact with her by not saying the wrong thing. But it's not easy, especially when she learns he's killed off her favorite heroine, Misery Chastain! Misery, beloved by millions including this nurse with Munchausen Syndrome!

Yes, he finds some old news articles in her memory lane scrapbook. She was put on trial when patients entrusted in her care died. At the time I saw the film the case of nurse  Beverly Allitt emerged. She killed a number of infants she was taking care of in England. She loved the limelight and smiled for the cameras. I hope a special hell waits for her for all the misery she caused. I think she even looked like Annie Wilkes:

All about her and her horrific crimes:

There is no death penalty in the UK but she won't ever be free. I just hope, as I said, that the final punishment is a doozy. Insane or not, I don't care.

Back to the film, Kathy Bates' acting is so powerful that long after her real lunatic self emerges, she is sympathetic. I felt sorry for her when she said how lonely she was and depressed. But at the same time, she was frightening. I don't think that sort of acting is easy to pull off.

All she had were the Misery Chastain novels. She filled an empty life with them just as she tried to fill herself up with food to compensate for all the emptiness. I do recall in the novel, she is shown to be eating a hell of a lot. She comes into see Paul and he can smell food on her breath. That struck me. This is a woman in total control who is totally out of control.

The sheriff and his wife are great. But he is no match for Wilkes. No one knows where writer Paul Sheldon is. It's a perfect murder/hostage situation. Annie's got it made. We can easily imagine Sheldon never being seen again.

In the novel I think she does something a lot worse than breaking Sheldon's foot. Even breaking his foot is horrific and all too real to watch.

One of the most chilling moments is when Sheldon manages to get a hold of a phone which is out of service, shall we say?! It's a prop! If that isn't nuts, what is?

There is a literally a fight to the death, well there has to be. Annie Wilkes is one of the most frightening villains to ever appear in film or fiction. And she's not to be pushed aside or overwhelmed easily.

This film and the novel have always been favorites of mine. I think what makes her so scary is this type of horror can happen. Despite writing supernatural horror, real horror--the horror of an Ed Gein living close by, the horror of a murdering nurse in charge of newborns killing with abandon, fuels my nightmares. Real as opposed to 'can't happen/won't happen' to me, is the most potent of frights.

There is evil out there, yes, it can exist in someone who is declared insane, but it's still evil that results from certain actions. Mourning a murdered newborn when you not only trusted the nurse, but you liked the nurse because she wanted you too, that's evil. That's potent. The results of that horror remain.

In my opinion, the film, got pretty close to the Allitt story for many, and I suppose that's one of the reasons I never forgot it.

Saturday, December 27, 2014


“When you’re a Vamp you’re a Vamp all the way from your first taste of blood through all your undying days…!”

Yes, it’s Riffy Vampire and he’s on his way to see his pal, Tony but Tony will beg off telling him he is tired of fighting the Zombies.

“Besides there’s this girl…”

“You traitor!” Riffy cried. “I know who you mean! I seen you with her. Why she’s nothing but a decomposing Zombie!”

Tony was adamant. “I love her!”

“But Maria Zombie and her brother are our immortal enemies!”

“Well they shouldn’t be!” Tony shouted back.

“Why, you lousy punk! How could you betray me, your bro, and with a Zombie yet? They’re the dregs man! They don’t belong here. Ain’t this neighborhood bad enough already? They need to go back where they came from. This city should be zombie free!”

Tony shook his head. “But I can’t stop seeing her. I love her!”

And so he did, deeply too and if he did, Maria felt the same way even though her brother Bernardo had warned her not to ever befriend a Vampire, let alone have petting sessions with one!

Bernie’s girl even got into the act. Yeah, Anita, Bernie’s main squeeze tried to reason with Maria singing the most heart rendering song to her--but to no avail. For when she finished, Maria merely swore her undying love for Tony. Not only that, the two continued to see each other and alone, too!
Ah undead love!
Now there was a human who liked the undead, who felt sorry for them for he understood their ways. As a matter of fact he was a horror writer! So respected was he that both his blood and his flesh were off limits to Zombie and Vampire alike!

He always tried reasoning with them, even if he had a deadline to make:
“My goodness! Why can’t you get along? Why do you act as if there’s some kinda apocalypse waiting to happen?

They were all sitting in his little candy store. The one Eddie Poe owned in order to supplement his writing.

Suddenly some human gangbangers came in, the Crips and Bloods had come for a conference.

“Hey!” Riffy Vampire cried gesturing wildly. “You’re not all human there’s undead in your ranks both Zombies and Vampires! Why is that?!"

Tito 179 head of the Crips nodded. “Yeah. We got both in with us. They’re okay, they’re stand up guys!”

Both Riffy and Bernardo looked appalled. 

Some of the gang stepped forward to introduce themselves.

Eddie Poe, always the idealist and mistrustful of their motives, shook his head. “But this isn’t a solution. Don’t you understand? It’s no good to be in a gang anyway!”

“Ah shut up, man!” Tito 179 cried. “We came here to work out a truce for Christmas. A truce between all undead and the living. And a truce is a truce man!”

The truth of that statement hit Eddie hard and he wept as did all the Vampires and Zombies—even Bernie and Riffy were sobbing.

Soon they were all overcome with emotion as the Crips and Bloods also broke down.

Nothing like this had ever happened! There would be peace perhaps beyond Christmas.

“Hey we can do it, right?”

That was the general consensus and it was very inspiring. Yet that is not the end, for this is a tale of woe. Sadly, neither Tony nor Maria knew of the truce for they had already destroyed themselves as neither could abide existing in an undead world filled with hatred.

All are punished unless someday, somewhere, someplace they can all find a new way of existing!
The End

© Copyright 2011 Carole Gill

Glutton for punishment? There are a lot more where that came from!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Dead Write! Complete Seasonal Undead Story!

'Christopher missed his father every day but now on this first Christmas without him it was worse for it was on Christmas Eve last that his father had taken his own life. Yes, another seasonal suicide.

His father had been a writer by profession. But he had also been a waiter, bus driver, hospital porter, salesman, hamburger flipper, taxi driver and a few other thousand things he had to do in order to feed his family.

“It’s only a means to an end, Chris. You’ll see!”

His father would say this as he addressed yet another envelope with yet another work of fiction in it. Chris saved every magazine his father’s work was published in. He admired him so very much.

And then last Christmas the very worst happened. His father bowed out.

As for Chris, he had come to an important decision. It just happened. He decided he would raise his father up!

Of course he didn’t really know what the hell would crawl out of the grave—or how decomposed his father might be.

“I’m going to do it anyway!”

Yes, he was rather emotional and frankly his emotions got the better of him.

He had made a veritable shrine to his father’s memory. His desk was left untouched, piled high with query letters ready to go and the envelopes all stamped and addressed.

Whatever published work was at hand was tacked up so the world could see all his father had written. It was mainly fiction. There were loads of living dead stories and a few horror novels as well. Sadly few people had ever heard of his father or read his writing.

Aside from fiction writing, his father had penned a pretty informative book about necromancy. It was well-researched and listed the historical roots of the rite. But besides that there were also included a fair amount of incantations; incantations that his father swore were genuine.

Chris suspected he had actually tried them out because of how adamant he was with his warning.

“Don’t ever try to do any of them Chris! Just don’t!”

Chris swore he wouldn’t and his father was satisfied.

The mother had deserted years ago. The lean times weren’t for her. She could never adjust. That didn’t help his dad’s frame of mind any. He made his first suicide attempt about that time and got talked down from quite a few roof tops.
Time passed and everything seemed better. Chris grew up no longer worrying about his father's frame of mind.

The two spent their last Thanksgiving together but then his father vanished a few weeks later. Chris didn’t know what to think.

His poor father did it on Christmas Eve. He blew his brains out. Chris didn’t find him. Some hapless hotel clerk did. Chris didn’t get over it. He wouldn’t get over it. Instead he started to study that book.
One year to the day, to that terrible day found the grieving son at his father’s grave—book in hand:

His voice clear and as strong as he could make it, he commanded:

“Rise from thy grave, come yea forth from the doom of your tomb!”

He said a few other choice things when suddenly the earth began to shift and split apart. The grave was opening and his father began to crawl out!

He fainted. When he opened his eyes he screamed his friggin head off. For there in the light of a full moon he could see the rot and the maggots—his father’s rotting flesh hanging off his moldering frame--and the stench!

His father spoke to him then. His voice muffled and mushy-sounding.

“Why’d you do it son! Why? You brought me back for what? So I could check the sales rankings for my shitty books?! Don’t you know how that eats a person up? Why it’s worse than maggots!

“But Dad!”

“No buts about it! You can’t make people buy your books, see? It’s just the way it is!”

Chris nodded and began to speak but his father’s horrific scream interrupted him. For suddenly it seemed his father had discovered a great truth: “No son! Tell me it isn’t so! You’re not--!”

“Yes! I have a manuscript that’s making the rounds now. I’m hopeful. I really am! I am determined!”

“No! Put me back,” his father wailed. “Put me back son. And I’ll save a place for you!”

© Copyright 2011 Carole Gill

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Amityville Horror or Hoax?

The infamous house in Amityville is at the core of the horror that occurred there. And yes, there was horror. The eldest son blew away every member of his family. They were literally murdered in their beds.

The question arises, why would anyone live there? Would you? I sure as hell wouldn't. But others have and it's their right.

The film purports to tell the horrific story of what happened one night in November, 1974. The film is based on the book by Jay Anson. The book and the films have done well.

What's The Amityville Horror about? We're told all sorts of things but can they be true? What is true is George and Kathy Lutz bought the house 13 months after the murders. They were advised by the agent what had happened there. As a matter of fact some of the DeFeo's furniture was still there.

Things start to happen immeditely and it's pretty scary. We're scared, the Lutzes are scared, their dog is scared. Windows suddenly slam shut, there are flies from hell and the priest, simply trying to bless the house, is nearly driven insane.
Lutz, played by James Brolin starts to look like Butch DeFeo, the killer son. He wakes up every night at 3:15 am ( the time the murders occurred). He starts acting up and seems to develope a particular fondness for an axe.

The Lutzes eventually beat it the hell out of there. Who wouldn't?

So what's the story with the house hoax or no hoax?


Eventually Butch DeFeo's lawyer admitted that he, along with the Lutzes, "created this horror story over many bottles of wine." The house was never really haunted; the terrifying experiences that the Lutzes described, and that were later embellished by Anson and other writers, were simply made up. 

There are actually a string of people who lived in the house over the years who didn't flee in the night, but who stayed and reported nothing unusual every occured.

List of owners, including the DeFeos up to present

June 28, 1965 - Nov 13, 1974 Ronald & Louise DeFeo $unknown**
Nov 14, 1974 - Dec 17, 1975 (vacant — owned by DeFeo estate)
Dec 18, 1975 - Jan 14, 1976 George & Kathleen Lutz $80,000
Jan 15, 1976 - Aug 29, 1976 (vacant — owned by Lutzes)
Aug 30, 1976 - March 17, 1977 (vacant — owned by bank)
March 18, 1977 - Aug 10, 1987 James & Barbara Cromarty $55,000
Aug 11, 1987 - June 9, 1997 Peter & Jeanne O'Neill $325,000
June 10, 1997 - September 2010 Brian Wilson $310,000
September 2010 - present David & Caroline D'Antonio $950,000

By the way, the address (112 Ocean Avenue) no longer exists and the house has been remodelled so that the distinctive 'half moon' windows in the rear are no longer there. The curious are not welcome at the property and I can understand why.

What do I think about it all?

From my own personal feelings I would never live in a house that had a mass murder. I just wouldn't. It would bother me too much. I also believe that evil leaves something behind and if this wasn't evil, this mass murder, I don't know what is.

If the whole thing was a hoax to make money, I think that is pretty immoral. Of course we can say that even if that was the intention, that doesn't mean that some sensitive people won't feel something inexplicable within the property.

What I would like to see is the victims of the massacre remembered as victims and not used in any way for any purpose other than to be remembered. The images below are of the parents and the murdered siblings. Butch DeFeo is pictured sitting alongside those he killed.

Louise DeFeo, Mother

murdered siblings, John, Allison, Marc, Dawn with Butch DeFeo

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Did Rose's Father Let Evil In?


"Night, I decided, was the worst time in this place, for I heard sobs and screams, too. Rarely did anyone come to comfort those who suffered. I tried to shut my ears to the noise but it was impossible.

There was one woman near me, who just wept. I crept out of bed to see if she was alright.  I whispered to her. I was afraid to reach over and offer a comforting hand for fear as to what she might do. But I did ask her if I could help. There was no answer. Not even a word.

As I walked back to my bed, another called me over. “There’s nothing you can do for her, no one knows why she cries, not even the staff. They don’t even know her name. They just found her that’s all, found her near dead outside. Someone nearly killed her. Best go back to bed now, ‘fore they see you up.”

That was all she said before she turned over. This was an awakening for me. I wasn’t the only person to have suffered hell on earth. I lay back and thought about what I had heard. And between my thoughts and the occasional scream and sob, I was serenaded until sleep finally came.

An attendant woke us all with a bell. “Time to get up. Breakfast now. Time to get up!”

No one grumbled or said anything. The faces looked as they usually looked, blank for the most part, sometimes sad. It varied. The unknown woman was just rising when another attendant yanked her out of bed and began hollering.
I nearly called out but was advised against it by one of the other inmates. “You can’t do nothing. Best not to try.”

My first Monday at Marsh. There were buckets of water so that we could wash. After which we had to put on the same shift again. Then we were marched two abreast, toward the dining room to get our meal. We weren’t supposed to talk, although many did. Some spoke gibberish and others in half sentences no one understood.

I decided those that inhabited a far-off world, were better off than those like myself who had most of our wits about us. It was one of my first lessons. The lesson of Marsh.

Breakfast was potage and watery tea. I just stared at mine until an arm reached out and took both the potage and the tea away. When I glanced after it, one of the women shook her head. “If you don’t take it quickly that’s what happens. Serves you right love, this ain’t Buckingham palace.”

There was a ripple of laughter after that, although I think in retrospect few understood what they were laughing at.
“Yes, of course, any information you can give me is of great importance.”
Monday morning found me staring at Dr. Bannion’s ink bottles trying to summon up the courage so I could go on.

“Please Rose, it is good to tell me these things. You are brave and I admire you, do go on. What kinds of fairy tales were they?”

“They were different than those my mother told me. These were about monsters and demons…you see Father was so different after his stroke, so very changed.”
He admonished me gently for not having told him of this before. I said I was sorry and went on. “They were dark stories filled with violent deaths and sometimes even things children were not meant to know about…”

“What kinds of things?”
“Just things that were upsetting about ladies and gentlemen.”

“Dr. Bannion, please…”
“But you must give me an idea, Rose.”
“He told me things they did to one another, vile disgusting things! Things he did to me…” I broke down then. There I was, a sobbing mess with Dr. Bannion shaking his head.

I felt I knew what he was thinking—he was thinking of my father and the effect that recent assault must have had on me. He told me to rest and get my breath back, which I did.

“They are terrible things you have locked away in your mind, best let them out and they will go away.”
“Yes, sir.”
He was studying me carefully. “And there was violence, too. Your mother you say suffered as well as your siblings?”

“Yes, quite.”
“But that is all?”

We both knew what he meant by that. “Yes,” I replied. “I am certain of that.” My mind began to wander, or not to wander really but to fix itself upon a thought I had had.

“Rose, you look far away, what is it, can you tell me?”
“Dr. Bannion, do you believe people can invite evil in?”
Every drop of blood appeared to have drained out of his face. I watched him put the pen down.

Now I began to worry that I really sounded insane, but he started speaking just then, “Let us be clear, Rose. When you say, ‘let evil in’, what exactly do you mean?”

“Well, I mean he changed so much and as I was a child, I hadn’t connected his actions with other things…”
“Like what other things?”

This was difficult. “I don’t know. Our home seemed to have changed when he did.”
“You mean his actions caused things to be different.”

“No, Dr. Bannion. I think I mean more than that. I mean, truthfully I had forgotten about this for the longest time. But now, what I mean is, I remember clearly feeling the house was different. We were all unhappy, yes—and suffering too—but there was something else. Something dark had come to dwell amongst us.”

Dr. Bannion stared at me. It was difficult to say what he was thinking. “Did anything happen then?”

“No, it was more like a feeling of dread that came upon me. I asked my mother if she felt it too, and she told me—I was a child you understand—not to worry about such things. And that’s when the fairy tales started.” Suddenly I paused:.“Dr. Bannion, now that I am an adult it seems to me that he was using those fairy tales to accomplish something evil.”

He didn’t reply for the longest time. He looked quite thoughtful, then he said, “Sometimes bad things happen to nice people through no fault of their own. Sadly, it is what happened to all of you, including your father.”

(end of excerpt)

or buy complete acclaimed The Blackstone Vampires Series

2014 - Amazon Bestseller in Dark Fantasy - THE BLACKSTONE VAMPIRES OMNIBUS
2015 - Amazon Bestseller in Vampire Horror - THE BLACKSTONE VAMPIRES OMNIBUS

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Just want to say that I'll be posting some free horror stories over the holidays! Watch out for vampires and zombies!  The stories are from my best selling House of Horrors! 

By the way, ghost stories and scary tales were customary in England Christmastime. It was a Victorian tradition. Hence, Dickens' Christmas Carol!

Victorians gathered around the fire to spin scary ghost stories. This tradition has sadly died out (for the most part), HOWEVER, there is still the tradition of the ghost story that shows up in a film on tv over the Holidays.

I remember some years ago seeing the first film version of The Woman in Black which scared the hell out of me. I love both versions! And I love Susan Hill's novel, too. If you haven't read it, please read it!

Meanwhile, stay scared and watch this space!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Exorcist: Classic, But Still Scary?

The face that launched massive theater and church attendance!

It most certainly did. It frightened people by its very nature. A young girl becomes possessed of the devil. We must all know the gist by now. Her frantic mother doesn't know what to do. Doctors can't help, this is beyond medical science. But the rest of us sitting in the theater with our hands over our mouths know the problem. SHE IS POSSESSED OF THE DEVIL!

What can be done? Mom finds out a proper exorcism is the only recourse she has, so she arranges it, after a great deal of effort because the Church doesn't do this sort of thing often.

Two priests come, one is the elderly, Father Merrin who knows with whom he is dealing. The priests set about their mission. It's chilling and I found myself saying, 'The power of Christ compels you,' along with the priests! When Regan raises up slowly from the bed, I nearly fainted. That was back in 1973. I was out on a date. Yes, I'm that old!

I remember sitting and waiting for the film to start. When the house lights dimmed, BEFORE THE FILM WENT ON, A GIRL SCREAMED! There was muffled laughter throughout the theater, but we were all nervous!


There are those who say it isn't. They don't find it frightening at all. That's fair, it's their opinion. But let's look at it this way: if a person could become possessed of evil, of the ultimate most intensely powerful evil there was, what then?

I happen to think evil and good exist in the hearts of human beings. However, I do think it is entirely possible for a force of pure evil to exist, something beyond our comprehension or possibly something else. That's up to each and every one of us to decide and think about.

There is a book I read years ago that I recommend to anyone with the slightest interest in this subject. It is entitled, Hostage to the Devil, by Malachi Martin. Father Malachi Martin, a prolific author and ordained Roman Catholic priest and aide to the Vatican, wrote this three years after the release of The Exorcist. It presents, what purports to be, five cases of (American) possession and exorcism. Whatever anyone's beliefs, if they have seen The Exorcist (film)­, I recommend this book. At the very least, it is extremely interesting and thought-provoking (review coming).

Evil has been done in the name of religion and not in the name of religion. I never want to exonerate human beings who have done great evil by blaming a force that may or may not exist. That would let them off the hook. Still, anything is possible. I don't know what the truth is. I can believe what I want, but I don't know. I don't think any one human being can know.

With regard to this film, let us say that anything is possible. If we can do that, the film is that much more horrifying. One of the priests, Father Karras, the one the girl's mother first sought out, battles his own demons. He is guilty about his elderly mother. The evil that he is trying to drive out of the girl, knows this and throws it back in his face. How could it know?! It can't but it does.

There are two forces at work here, good and bad. The film and novel show this in the most dramatic way. Each of us has on our conscience things we have done, wrongs we have committed. What if some night something whispered our wrongs to us, reminding us, demonstrating to us that it knows!

What if we could record it all and play it back so that we knew it wasn't our imagination? What then? I'd be frightened, would you?

So, is the film still scary? I say, yes! This film is still scary because EVIL is scary. Our own belief systems can label that evil whatever we like. It is more comfortable that way. We can pray and put symbols up of our faith 'to protect ourselves' or not. We can scoff and then open up a newspaper and read that a gunman blew away the entire senior class somewhere (anywhere). And we can certainly watch the news any night at all and see all the rotten, murderous acts of violence and insanity that occur with nauseating frequency around the globe.

If a young girl, living in Georgetown in America can be possessed of evil for whatever reason, I find that scary. So yes, the film is still frightening because it presents through good acting, great direction and chilling images, not only a morality play, but a memorable horror film. That's what I think. What about you?

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Know what this isl!

Know what it is? I’ve seen it many times. I don’t live far from it. It’s on desolate moorland. It seems to be hiding away from the world, like something cast out. Even in summer it can look grim there. The only real color is the purple heather that carpets the moors; that’s in spring, by autumn, the heather is brown and wild, driving rain and howling wind is quite common.

A great writer was inspired by the place or so they say. She and her sisters didn’t live far. They walked on these moors quite often; Charlotte and Anne–and Emily with her favorite dog, Keeper. Perhaps she paused to look at the ruins there, for there were ruins at that time.

Legend has it that Top Withens (pictured) inspired Wuthering Heights. No one can agree whether or not that is true. I like to think that it is. I can easily picture Emily standing there and dreaming of the house that would be known as Wuthering Heights.

My inspiration for my first novel, the first in The Blackstone Vampires Series, The House on Blackstone Moor, was inspired by those same moors. Perhaps not by those ruins, though–those I shall leave for Miss Bronte for I would never claim them. The moorland is something else. As I did picture a grand looking house built upon them. A house completely out of place on such grim and lonely moorland. When I peopled that house, I began to write my novel.

There followed three more novels after that one. The story is a saga and was written as such. Unholy Testament - The Beginnings, Unholy Testament - Full Circle, The Fourth Bride. 
All four novels including The House on Blackstone Moor have been comprised into The Blackstone Vampires Omnibus. 

If you come to England, please visit West Yorkshire and the village of Haworth. You will find the Bronte Parsonage there. The house is alive with their presence.

Be sure to walk down the old streets toward the moor. Close your eyes and perhaps you will feel yourself being led to Top Withens. Is that a dog barking near you? And that woman–is she really there? Could it be Emily with Keeper, or is it just your imagination? Who can say? If there are spirits about the place, perhaps you will find Cathy and Heathcliff as well. I am certain they are all there and always will be.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Castevets In Rosemary's Baby, Not The Sort of Neighbors You Want!

Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse move into the Dakota on Central Park West in New York. It's a nice building but there is no way they are prepared for what happens. Maybe if they had moved a block away, they'd have had a child and everything would have been a hell (ho ho) lot better than it was.

Guy is ambitious and fertile ground for the horrific Minnie and Roman Castevet's dastardly manipulations. See this seemingly pleasant couple serve something a lot more potent than the Neighborhood Watch Committee.

I can't imagine anyone not having seen the film, but I suppose there are those that haven't. If you haven't, you are missing out on a great film. The film is based on the bestselling novel by Ira Levin.

I happen to think this film and the novel it is based on, created its own sub-genre of horror. Now, Satan was really scary and so were those who served him. He wasn't Vincent Price hamming it up. (I loved Price, btw). It was something else entirely.

The film showed us power. The innocent, if they are trying to thwart Satan and his plans, are just picked off as Rosemary's friend is. This film is a giant leap beyond the black and white films, classic though they may be, that purported to show Satanism and devil rites.

The superb actors, Ruth Gordon and Sidney Blackmer are the neighbors from hell (literally). They seem friendly, they look like they don't bite. They even look to be the kind of sweet, elderly couple you can leave your kids with! NO WAY!

Of course what makes this a great story is the realization that some people are easier pickings than others, easier for the forces of evil to gain a foothold that is. Rosemary (Mia Farrow) isn't like that. She just wants a child because she's in love with her husband. But the husband--played by John Cassavetes is a very willing vessel and so game for a pact. He wants to live in the Hills of Beverly and everything. In short, he's willing to do anything for stardom. That is sinister as hell, shocking really to see how far this man will go. He came across a lot scarier to me than anyone else in the film.

The Castevets (Minnie and Roman) are a riot as are their friends. They look like everyone's idea of pleasant elderly folk. That is brilliant! But make no mistake, the pace gets stepped up. And when Rosemary is desperate to protect her unborn child (her suspicions have led her to believe they want it for a sacrifice), that is for me, when the film is at its most potent.

Remember her schlepping around the heavy suitcase in order to get a new gynecologist? She never looked more vulnerable!

There's a great twist in the tale and between that and the superb direction by Roman Polanski, the film is great.

By the way, there is a scene where Rosemary is talking to an actor made blind conveniently so that her husband could take over the role. Polanski wanted her to look shocked and nervous. He didn't tell her that Tony Curtis was (non credited) the voice of the blind actor. Curtis and Farrow were good friends. She looked shocked because she didn't expect to hear his voice!That's a great director. The scene came off as Polanski intended. Perfect.

Great story, acting and directing and a lot of chills. What else do we need?

Monday, December 8, 2014

Mysticism and Myths Blog Tour!




Pre-order your copy today – ONLY $0.99! Final price will be $2.99, so be sure to secure your order today.
Available through AMAZON
Release Date: December 15, 2015
Bound By Blood (A Night Shift Novella)
By Margo Bond Collins

Sometimes the monsters in the dark are real...
As a child, Lili Banta ignored her grandmother's cryptic warnings to avoid children outside their Filipino community in Houston. When many of those other children fell ill, Lili ignored the whispers in her community that a vampiric aswang walked among them.

Years later, Lili returns to Houston to work for the Quarantine Station of the Center for Disease Control—but she is plagued by dark, bloody dreams that consume her nights and haunt her days. When a strange illness attacks the city's children, Lili is called in to find its source, and maybe even a cure.

But in order to save the city, she must first acknowledge the sinister truth: A monster stalks the night—closer than she ever expected....

Isa: Gift of the Baloma
By Perri Forrest

Isa: Gift of the Baloma is a fantasy tale created from a myth that derives from the Trobriand islands (today officially known as the Kiriwina Islands). Isa is the beautifully tortured soul who has never known love, and who has pretty much travelled through life alone.

When tragic circumstances lead her into the depths of the sea, she has no idea what her fate may hold, and thus prepares for worst. However, as in life, sometimes we have to go through our very worst to get to the place we were destines to be. Such is the case with Isa.

Just when she thinks all is lost, she meets Chief Topileta, headman of the villages of the dead, and an unexpected love affair ensures. As Isa will soon find, nothing in her life stays peaceful for long, and before she knows it, she is separated from the only person to ever care for her.

When tragedy strikes and Isa finds herself awake after two years of falling into a deep sleep, she is surprised to find that all thoughts are still with the man she has not forgotten. But has he forgotten her? Will he come for her? Will she find love again?

This is only the beginning of Isa's story, in the full length novel that is set for 2015 release, readers will find out the many layers of Isa and be able to journey with her as she finds out about her lineage and the family she was sure did not exist.

Micco, Anguta's Reign
By Dormaine G.
Micco (2)
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.

Cursed: A Yorkshire Ghost Story
By Karen Perkins
She's back. This time no one is safe.
A skeleton is dug up at the crossing of the ways on Hanging Moor, striking dread into the heart of Old Ma Ramsgill – the elderly matriarch of the village of Thruscross. And with good reason. The eighteenth-century witch, Jennet, has been woken.

A spate of killings by a vicious black dog gives credence to her warnings and the community – in particular her family – realise they are in terrible danger. Drastic measures are needed to contain her, but with the imminent flooding of the valley to create a new reservoir, do they have the ability to stop her and break her curse?

Carnem Levare
By Jaxx Summers

We are born, live and eventually leave the mortal world. For Stefano Bonaro the same can be said, with a powerful exception. He was born to live and love in Venice, beyond death.

Stefano is passionately in love with Anastasia Soranzo. They grew up with the promise of a future together, through family bonds and emotional ties. Then suddenly their lives are torn apart by unforgivable deception. For the sake of family, Stefano and Anastasia can no longer have a future together. While Anastasia can easily move on, Stefano refuses to do so.

During Eighteenth Century Carnival, Stefano seals his faith when he commits a crime of passion that ends with him even taking his own life. But this is not the end for the jilted lover, when he is suddenly brought back to life a year later. Stefano's spirit continues to hope in love, even as he becomes ruled by madness. But will it ever truly end for Stefano Bonaro?

The Life Keeper
By Abby L. Vandiver
Life Keeper Cover

The bloodline of Romania, older than the legend of the vampire, the strigoi are vile, evil creatures who suck the life from the people of the villages that line the impenetrable forests of the country. In this tale with a twist, Jessica Petrescu dotes on her grandmother and takes care of her family in the aftermath of the fall of communism in Romania. Her family is disrupted by a red headed, indigo colored eyes cousin, who turns her household upside down in his quest to discover whether a strigoi is living among his relatives.  


Saturday, December 6, 2014

Can Fiction Be Fictionalized?

Lamia, flesh-eating vampire
I know vampires fly because I saw them fly in True Blood. My vampires fly and they do it without turning into a bat. They don't need to turn into bats, that was Stoker.

If fiction writers want their vampires to eat an occasional bit of pate (they might be at a posh party) they have them do it. They do require blood however, but there is an herb, Wolfbane, mixed with Mistletoe (yeah, I know)! which can stave off their need for blood. How do I know this? I know it because I have written it that way in some of my fiction. I can do what I like because it's fiction.

If I show depraved monstrous vampires partaking of flesh I can do that too! Why shouldn't I?

If vampires can live in urban communities, in backwoods little Southern towns, in the present as well as the past--they can also go to high school or not. They can be anything the writer wants them to be.

There is no Gospel According to Vampires. If there is I haven't seen it. Thus there are no dictates as to what vampires must do--the writer is free to use his or her imagination. That's why writing is considered to be creative.

By the way, the Lamia ate flesh and drank blood. In ancient Greek mythology, Lamia was a beautiful queen of Libya who became a child-eating demon. Aristophanes claimed her name derived from the Greek word for gullet which referred to her habit of devouring children, not nanny material at all!

If a genre is not infused with new ideas it becomes stale in my opinion. I have written about vampires every which way. I have them as Gothic, romanticized blood-sucking creatures, as tortured beings and as monstrous flesh eaters. I've depicted them as feral monsters caught in the wilds of Transylvania by hunters who supply Victorian freak shows. Press link to read excerpt about this from Justine: Into the Blood.

The day that there is a government dictate telling me how vampires must be depicted I will write only for myself.

Fiction is fiction. We world-build, we put different spins on established monsters because we seek to entertain as writers, readers want that they have told me they do.

I have in mind another series which is going to be quite different but there again, I am, I assume, permitted to use my imagination and if I want a bad-ass Tinkerbelle type to drink blood and spit acid at people she doesn't like I will have her do that.

In the meantime, whatever you're reading or writing, I hope you enjoy it. As for me, I'm going to keep creating fiction in the belief that it is fiction. I'm going to do it because fiction is fiction and not factual. It is the stuff of dreams and if you write horror as I do, it's the stuff of nightmares!  BOO!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Green Mile: Poignant And Masterful

The 1999 film, starring Tom Hanks is based on the serial novels written by Stephen King. It is as superb as Shawshank Redemption (review coming). In fact, in its own way, it is more special because it has about it something of the divine.

When I see or read something great I find I can boil the plot down to analyze the basic ingredients. I can with The Green Mile. The story is basically about guards performing their difficult duties on death row in a southern prison. It can’t be easy. We see that it can’t. It seems at times they are also sentenced to serve their time in this terrible place. Whatever we may feel about capital punishment, the men (except for one) are sympathetic and try to be as helpful as they can be. After all, these are condemned men they are overseeing, men preparing to go to their deaths. They are paying for what they did, most of them. In John Coffey’s case, it is more complicated and that’s at the core of the story.

John Coffey (like the drink, but not spelled the same) – one of my favorite lines, seems to have been put amongst them to bring divine grace and a special insight to the Green Mile. The light he brings lights up the darkness and it stays there. I am certain it remains always as an afterglow.
Coffey has been tried and convicted of a double child murder.  When Hanks and his men get a look at this giant, they don’t know what to make of him. But then they do and when they do, they each become affected by this unusual man as he touches all of their lives.

So why do they work there when it’s so difficult? Well, it’s during the Great Depression, a time when a secure job was prized—so they too serve and suffer. It is their fate.

Of course there is amongst them Percy, one nasty piece of work with an important relative—he taunts them with. Percy, we hope will get his come-uppins. He is stupid, mean and sadistic and this prison’s death row should be the last place for him to work in. I wanted to pull his head off, just sayin.’

An elderly man, Hanks grown old played by another actor, spins the tale and it's haunting and gripping at the same time. There are secrets to be told and one hell of a story. It is unforgettable and as for the mystery surrounding one little mouse--well that is just some of the beautiful magic.

I’d say there is a great lesson for all of us here. A man, many would consider to be an angel, visits this hellish place for a purpose. Perhaps it is to bring hope to the hopeless, whatever it is--i have always considered John Coffey to be that angel.

May I just add my own personal tribute to Michael Clarke Duncan who plays John Coffey and say that he will be sorely missed because he was John Coffey, there is no way he wasn't!

Director: Frank Darabont

Writers: Stephen King (novel), Frank Darabont (screenplay)

Stars: Tom Hanks, Michael Clarke Duncan, David Morse