How To Wear: 31 Days Of Spooky Attire

by on Oct.30, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

Sadly I did not engage in my annual tradition of watching one horror movie a day, every day during the month of October. I didn’t have the time! I’m so sorry! If you missed them in previous years, you can find my 31 Days of Horror in our archives for 2018 and 2017. I’m definitely going to go for it again next year, so stay tuned.

(Although! In the first days of the month, I did watch one beautiful giallo-style horror movie with a cast almost entirely populated by queer characters, and that I highly recommend–Knife + Heart, on Shudder right now.)

So…maybe fill the void with something else, then? I gave it some thought and realized that over the past decade of assembling little fashion collages (see our How To Wear category for more!) so many of them, at least half, probably more, are horror-inspired! How fun would it be to gather up some of my favorites, dust off the cobwebs, and present them here at Haute Macabre? For …31 Days Of Spooky Attire!

A small disclaimer: many of these sets were made using a site that no longer exists. Whereas I used to have a list for every item I included for each ensemble, sadly that is no longer the case and I cannot link to any of the items used. I know–it’s a travesty! Some of them I might remember though, so feel free to leave any questions you might have in the comments and I am happy to try and guess!

DAY ONE // DAGON

DAY TWO // SALEM’S LOT

DAY THREE // LURID PAPERBACKS

DAY FOUR // SATAN

DAY FIVE // CRIMSON PEAK

DAY SIX // COVEN

DAY SEVEN // MORTICIA ADDAMS

DAY EIGHT // CARMILLA

DAY NINE // VAMPIRE SQUID

DAY TEN // WITCHES

DAY ELEVEN // A MOTLEY MENAGERIE

DAY TWELVE // JUNJI ITO (TOMIE)

DAY THIRTEEN // VIRGIL FINLAY

DAY FOURTEEN // FEMALE CENOBITE

DAY SIXTEEN // SPOOKY CHATEÂU

DAY SEVENTEEN // THE HOUSE ON THE BORDERLAND

DAY EIGHTEEN // PENNY DREADFUL

DAY NINETEEN // WENDIGO

DAY TWENTY // MADAME DE LA ROUGIERRE

DAY TWENTY-ONE // AN OCCULT ENDEAVOR

DAY TWENTY-TWO // TERRIFYING TOTS

DAY TWENTY-THREE// SPIDER BABY

DAY TWENTY-FOUR // GOTHIC ROMANCE NOVELS

DAY TWENTY-FIVE // OBSESSED HORROR FAN

DAY TWENTY-SIX // PEEPHOLE

DAY TWENTY-SEVEN // TWIN PEAKS

DAY TWENTY-EIGHT // A SPOOKY SCENT

DAY TWENTY-NINE // CARNIVAL OF SOULS

DAY THIRTY // ABANDONED AMUSEMENTS

DAY THIRTY-ONE // PET SEMATARY

Featured image: George Ziel for the cover of Shorecliff by Marilyn Ross

Leave a Comment more...

How To Wear: 31 Days Of Spooky Attire

by on Oct.30, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

Sadly I did not engage in my annual tradition of watching one horror movie a day, every day during the month of October. I didn’t have the time! I’m so sorry! If you missed them in previous years, you can find my 31 Days of Horror in our archives for 2018 and 2017. I’m definitely going to go for it again next year, so stay tuned.

(Although! In the first days of the month, I did watch one beautiful giallo-style horror movie with a cast almost entirely populated by queer characters, and that I highly recommend–Knife + Heart, on Shudder right now.)

So…maybe fill the void with something else, then? I gave it some thought and realized that over the past decade of assembling little fashion collages (see our How To Wear category for more!) so many of them, at least half, probably more, are horror-inspired! How fun would it be to gather up some of my favorites, dust off the cobwebs, and present them here at Haute Macabre? For …31 Days Of Spooky Attire!

A small disclaimer: many of these sets were made using a site that no longer exists. Whereas I used to have a list for every item I included for each ensemble, sadly that is no longer the case and I cannot link to any of the items used. I know–it’s a travesty! Some of them I might remember though, so feel free to leave any questions you might have in the comments and I am happy to try and guess!

DAY ONE // DAGON

DAY TWO // SALEM’S LOT

DAY THREE // LURID PAPERBACKS

DAY FOUR // SATAN

DAY FIVE // CRIMSON PEAK

DAY SIX // COVEN

DAY SEVEN // MORTICIA ADDAMS

DAY EIGHT // CARMILLA

DAY NINE // VAMPIRE SQUID

DAY TEN // WITCHES

DAY ELEVEN // A MOTLEY MENAGERIE

DAY TWELVE // JUNJI ITO (TOMIE)

DAY THIRTEEN // VIRGIL FINLAY

DAY FOURTEEN // FEMALE CENOBITE

DAY SIXTEEN // SPOOKY CHATEÂU

DAY SEVENTEEN // THE HOUSE ON THE BORDERLAND

DAY EIGHTEEN // PENNY DREADFUL

DAY NINETEEN // WENDIGO

DAY TWENTY // MADAME DE LA ROUGIERRE

DAY TWENTY-ONE // AN OCCULT ENDEAVOR

DAY TWENTY-TWO // TERRIFYING TOTS

DAY TWENTY-THREE// SPIDER BABY

DAY TWENTY-FOUR // GOTHIC ROMANCE NOVELS

DAY TWENTY-FIVE // OBSESSED HORROR FAN

DAY TWENTY-SIX // PEEPHOLE

DAY TWENTY-SEVEN // TWIN PEAKS

DAY TWENTY-EIGHT // A SPOOKY SCENT

DAY TWENTY-NINE // CARNIVAL OF SOULS

DAY THIRTY // ABANDONED AMUSEMENTS

DAY THIRTY-ONE // PET SEMATARY

Featured image: George Ziel for the cover of Shorecliff by Marilyn Ross

Leave a Comment more...

Red All Over: An Interview With Adam Nevill

by on Oct.29, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

Years ago, I read a horror book called The Ritual. I don’t remember how it crossed my path, though I do have a fondness for both wilderness spookers and Scandinavia — probably it was on a list of books compiled by someone I trusted, or maybe the Internet’s various algorithms simply delivered me to its chilling doorstep. Either way, I read it and loved it and that was that.

A while later I purchased a book called Last Days. It was found-footage in literary form, complete with cults and that strange flavor I call nonfiction-y fiction, where an author with a clear obsession for research and libraries and esoterica — someone who would make a brilliant nonfiction writer, in other words — decides to, instead, set their imagination loose upon facts with teeth and claws until what remains is something uniquely terrifying.

I read Last Days, and I loved it, and I thought… this author’s name is familiar. Since then, I have been devouring everything Adam Nevill has conjured. With the release of his newest book The Reddening around the corner, Adam has kindly answered a few questions for us. Read on to learn about folk horror, memetic evil, and the unfortunate end of a humorless librarian.

The Reddening is available for pre-order now and will be released on October 31. Grab your copy from Adam’s Ritual Limited Shop or Amazon.

— Sonya

One of my favorite things about your work is how I often get the feeling that you came across something that interested you — guerrilla film-making, recording underground cave sounds, etc — and then read a lot about it. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve had to research for your writing?

Hello Sonya and thanks very much for not just reading my horrors but also for appreciating the work that goes into them. I am a fiend for research. I don’t have any professional expertise that I can readily call upon to inform stories, but I have a very inquisitive mind so am compelled to do my own extensive research to try and create plausibility in my horror fiction, in the characters and their worlds. I don’t think writers ever get tired of writing about themselves, but readers may feel fatigue at reading about the same characters in similar situations in the same author’s books. Unless you can turn this compulsion into a series which relies upon the same character and a certain familiarity, an inevitable predictability can creep in. I strive against that very thing in every book I write. It has to be part of your vision for horror, but not the same thing every time.

I also make writing more difficult for myself, but unintentionally, by obsessively researching. It slows me down but I really enjoy learning, acquiring knowledge and reading, and almost all of my secondary material comes from non-fiction books. I’m not a Googler; I still have an academic approach to research. I also believe that fiction has a greater chance of enduring and finding readers across a long game if it’s better considered, from the actual writing to what underpins the world and characters and story that a writer creates. My position on this becomes more entrenched in a publishing world in which four books published per year from a single author has been normalised. My heart tends to leap when I discover a book that took a writer a decade to finish; that alone can sell it to me.

But to (finally) answer your question, I tend to fixate on a subject and when I delve deeply into the wealth of information available, the truth is far stranger than anything I could have imagined independently. This might be true of all human existence and endeavour. 

One of my weirdest research experiences occurred right at the start when researching my first novel, Banquet for the Damned. I wrote the first draft while a mature student at St Andrews University in the late 90s and discovered a wide array of books on witchcraft, folklore and demonology, written by scholars from all around the world, in the anthropology section of the university library; much of it was also part of a personal collection bequeathed to the library by a former Rector. The limit for borrowed books was about 30 tomes, which I quickly and repeatedly reached. Eventually, a librarian, who often checked out my loans, asked me, “Can I ask you what you’re doing at this university?” The experience was all very M R Jamesian.

I told him I was researching a horror novel and his expression changed; it was as if he was suddenly chewing on one of his own turds.

I received exactly the same expression filled with revulsion and disdain from another librarian, at a branch library in London, when I borrowed books and took out inter-library loans on titles with the subject of taxidermy and puppetry. This was for the House of Small Shadows research. This guy also asked me why I wanted these particular books. I didn’t care for his tone and found the question a bit intrusive, so I asked him if he thought I was a serial killer? He didn’t see the funny side of that (and still hasn’t, though he’s had years to consider my jest as he sits in my loft, staring into the darkness, with the same expression on his face).

I’ve also had a couple of uncanny experiences. When researching for Apartment 16 and investigating the subjects of British expressionist artists, as well as the British Fascist movement before and during the Second World War, I was also working as a night watchman in a swanky apartment block in West London. And I came across a passage in Diana Moseley’s biography that indicated that the Moseleys, Oswald (leader of the BUF) and Diana, had lived in an apartment in the very building that I was guarding. This was after they came out of Brixton Prison at the end of the war. I nearly slid off my chair. I was creating a story about a fascist expressionist painter who occupied an apartment in the very building that Oswald Moseley had lived in. There are thousands of these mansion blocks in London; what were the odds for me choosing this subject while working in Moseley’s old home?

Last one! Though I have many. While researching the Manson Family for Last Days, I realised that I had been walking past a building, twice a day for 5 years, in which one of the suspected murders had been committed in London, during a scientology conference in the 70s (so that Manson could keep an annuity he’d taken from a follower). On many of these walks I made mental plans and notes about writing a horror novel about a counter-culture cult from the 60s & 70s, who were murdering former members in different parts of the world in inexplicable, baffling ways . . . 

And just prior to this time, I had also worked as a porter in another building in Mayfair that I discovered was the original headquarters of The Process Church of the Final Judgement. It was as if, something sinister in London, was helping me to write stories about itself.

Folk horror is an established genre, and people have some preconceived notions about what a folk horror story entails. With The Reddening, were there any tropes that you particularly wanted to play with, subvert, or avoid?

An ancient legacy of myth and tradition with unique trappings in a remote English locality, appealed to me; a trope for sure, but one that never loses currency or value to me. It’s how you put your own spin and interpretation on these ideas that matters. I wanted a legacy of isolated folklore to actually reach back sixty thousand years, and beyond, and deeply into prehistory itself. I was reaching for that Nigel Kneale vibe, with a strong element of cosmic horror in which vast swathes of time and space are suggested by the locale and the aesthetic. So it was most certainly folk horror but with a definite cosmic horror angle too. It was to be a savage, brutal and genocidal folk legacy, one of industrial slaughter, and not something that involved flowers, maypoles, saucy rhymes, wenches, or the Green Man. So, yes, I avoided much of the window-dressing while focussing on the core tenets of remoteness, legacy, buried power, animosity to outsiders, horrid pacts between man and a pre-Christian God continuing in isolation. A dirty dog mouth issuing a humanlike scream in a lightless limestone cave, festooned with old bones dusted red, was my starting point. There was no corn dolly, no wreath or totems on my mind; I wanted something earthier, more bestial and stranger that still might find a place in modern festivals, witch-wives and folk magic.

The very landscape was also important – I needed the actual ground, sea and sky to evoke the wild, but in a feral and mistreated way: heavily mined, defoliated, made barren and inhospitable by ancient industries. No vast barley or wheat fields or orchards.

So my approach to any subject in horror — the ghost story, the serial killer, the cult, the alien, the paranormal — is to keep it fresh and strange whilst still maintaining an attachment to the tradition or field of horror.

More broadly, what horror gimmicks reliably scare you? Do you use them or avoid them in your work?

Not sure I’d call them gimmicks, but situations involving tight tunnels and crawlspaces compress my chest and I often have to look away. I might not actually be capable of writing something of that nature without permanently damaging myself.

What makes me really tense too, and I see it in almost every kind of film or TV show, is a driver not looking out the windscreen when in a moving vehicle, but turned to camera and talking to a passenger. I often shout “Watch the bloody road!” I brace for impact. I find those scenes unbearable. Another is if a character is searching a house and the owner comes home and the front door clicks open. I hate it. I don’t even like looking at someone mooching through another’s belongings. It’s oddly simple things like that that set me off squirming.

But it is an ongoing debate in horror fiction — does it have to be scary? I always liked Ramsey Campbell’s definition that it should, at least, be disturbing. And yet, the primary reader expectation for horror is to be frightened. Same for film viewers. It can be a straightjacket. Horror has this terrible win or lose arbitration set against it — did it or didn’t it scare you? And yet, the field can do so much more than offer a scare.

But horror is always going to be more effective and memorable if a storyteller strives to conjure awe that is both wondrous and terrifying. A sublime of terror. The greats do this. It’s the hardest thing to conjure, but aspire to do it and by falling short you’ve probably written something better than the run-of-the-mill using the same-old, same-old. From that kind of ambition comes the real dread, the lingering unease, maybe even fear. There’s little worse in horror than a writer trying too hard to frighten a reader; in the first place, the horror has to arise from out of what a writer is compelled to write about and needs to feel authentic, the ground laid painstakingly first. Sure, there are techniques that can be used, but I tend to imagine what frightens me and just describe it as simply and accurately as I can using ordinary language. The opening scene in No One Gets Out Alive is a good example, as is the opening scene of The Ritual. Both are based on my experiences; one in which I awoke and heard an intruder in my completely darkened room, during my first night in that room (it was actually a very noisy mouse inside a plastic bag), and the second on finding dead sheep hanging from trees after a punishing hike and fruitless search for somewhere to pitch a tent in the dark, as it began to snow.

I have set myself goals too — in one novel, in which there is a high and gruesome body count, I endeavoured to never once use the word “blood”, and in every situation to use ordinary diction and indirection to describe anything gruesome — to avoid language that carried an unpleasant association alone. To my eye, that makes horror more effective. So how you write something we’ve all read a hundred times before, or how you depict something that has appeared in a 100 films, is the challenge and is key. There is always another way to create, or recreate, everything.

Your characters are often writers, film-makers, and other artists who are coerced into spreading that story’s evil through their work — a memetic enemy of sorts. (You’ve also mentioned liking Gemma Files’ Experimental Film, which is one of my favorite examples of memetic evil in horror.) What draws you to this type of threat? Is it something you ever worry about spreading as a writer yourself?

Interesting question. I wouldn’t flatter myself to be capable of spreading anything in this way, but I have been told scores of times by readers that water stains now make them uneasy after they’d read Last Days. They see teeth in them!

But that concept of a malignant influence or presence transferring through other mediums I do find fascinating and a source of inspiration — it can also be metaphorical and commentary about what continually happens; how people are conned, how people are convinced to vote for stupid things, or deny the existence of important matters and issues because they are too challenging or inconvenient to behold. Ideas are viruses; Yuval Noah Harari writes about this brilliantly in Sapiens. We may even be more prone to ideas spreading like viruses than ever because of the speed and variety of dissemination, the expertise behind spin and the effectiveness of disinformation if its produced convincingly. The idea of subtle oppression, and of gradually being driven into penury, despair and even madness, by near indefinable forces that are driven by self-interest and low animal cunning, is something I return to again and again; my dread of it actually fuels much of my horror.

But I don’t write techno thrillers and even my science fiction novel, Lost Girl, is very low tech. To me, the consequences of runaway climate change in an overheating world immediately conjured the French idea of King Death during the Black Death, and not Mad Max or high tech biospheres on other planets. It’s how my imagination works — I tend to look back on the grotesque in human history and culture to clothe ideas that are contemporary, or timeless in that they are always universally relevant. I guess specific, almost minor details in my secondary reading tend to strike me and set my imagination on fire for what, for instance, would spread a terrible influence or reanimate a curse. So I go for things like ancient oil paintings too sickening to be undraped for more than seconds (‘The Saints of Filth’ in Last Days), or a certain kind of communal meditation or 60s charlatan’s astral projection exercise, that exposes you to a kind of psychic contamination you’re never free of (Hazzard’s paradise belt in Under a Watchful Eye). I tend to use that kind of imagery or aesthetic. I find low tech imagery and ideas more effective, more exciting to write about and more affecting in fiction. As an editor, I remember mountains of stories sent to me about IT related conspiracies and email chains and computer viruses and hackers — I found none of it affecting, some of it “neat” but not memorable. So, I’ll stick to blackened bones that fall from the sky if you embrace a certain kind of communal living, and the screams of pigs in the night in places where there should be no pigs … missing paintings, old film footage, childhood memories, peculiarly charged domestic spaces that begin to inhabit a consciousness like a new persona … this kind of material makes me want to write horror.

In The Reddening, I was delighted when Steve found an album called “Thin Len and Choker Lottie.” And in Under A Watchful Eye, I remember a reference or two to Last Days. Do you see this interconnectedness more as an easter egg for readers or as the building of a mythos?

It’s a vague and diffuse suggestion of a mythos, but one not especially considered or designed into a series or universe. I think each of my books has a slender link, or links, to another, or others, in some small, discreet way, but massive kudos to spotting the reference in that song. There are also three other references to other books between that album track listing and the Wiki entry for Tony Willows. 

More than anything it’s a bit of fun and a murky glimpse into sub-cultures and esoteric individuals and rare books and artefacts that suggest a bigger, darker picture; not so much a conspiracy but a glimpse into something simply awful that awaits us all. Were I to properly connect everything and do a big reveal in a future book, the enigma and mystique might be entirely lost. It would be very hard to reconcile everything too because of the various interpretations of an afterlife I have created as I have gone along.

Anyway, I found the interview invigorating; it’s nice to hit pause now and again and think on what the hell am I doing?

Thanks for having me!

The Reddening is available for pre-order now and will be released on October 31. Grab your copy from Adam’s Ritual Limited Shop or Amazon.


Leave a Comment more...

The Feral Feminine: An Interview With Kristen J. Sollee

by on Oct.22, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

When we discovered that Haute Macabre favorite Kristen J. Sollée’s follow-up to Witches, Sluts, Feminists was a book about cats — more specifically, about the connections between cats and women, the feline and the feminine — we eagerly awaited its release. Cat Call: Reclaiming the Feral Feminine is out now from Weiser Books and during Kristen’s promotional tour, I caught up with her about its slinky, shapeshifting contents. After you’re done reading, perhaps you want to pick up your own copy of Cat Call from Amazon, IndieBound, or a signed copy at Haute Macabre? And maybe you’d also like to follow Kristen on Instagram and Twitter? Very well. Now, let’s get started…

Cat Call was born during the writing of Witches, Sluts, Feminists, when you realized there was a strong link between femininity and felinity. Can you tell us a bit about that?

So much of my research for Witches, Sluts, Feminists was crawling with cats. Cats are an intimate part of early modern witch lore, either as familiars or the animal form witches would supposedly take to commit their evil deeds. Cats are associated with heightened and taboo sexuality, and feline symbolism has been part of feminist action for decades. So all that — combined with a lifelong cat obsession — led straight to Cat Call

OK, so this is one of my very favorite questions to ask authors. What’s the weirdest thing you came across in your research for this book?

There were so many delightfully weird tidbits that arose in my research (like that cats have a naturally kinky form of torture some behaviorists call “overflow play”), but I particularly loved learning about the things feline familiars did for their witches. In 16th century England, Elizabeth Frances confessed that her cat (named Satan, of course) showed her how to induce an abortion with herbs and how to incapacitate her abusive husband. It’s no wonder that when facing the threat of death Frances tried to shift blame for what she did onto her pet at a time when women had so little bodily autonomy and protection under the law against domestic violence. And, hey, if Frances actually had a cat who taught her these things, that’s one feminist demon cat.

Photo: Natasha Gornik

My academic background is in linguistics, and I loved the chapter where you covered the etymology of words like “cat,” “pussy,” and even “heavy petting.” Did you end up looking into cat etymology in non-Germanic languages? (There’s a 2002 study that compared the cultural associations of words that had different grammatical genders in German versus Spanish — and the word’s gender ended up dramatically altering the speaker’s perception of it!)

Ooh I really wish I had been able to go deeper — that study is so fascinating! However, since I only touch on etymology I didn’t get past the Germanic languages. But even within that language family, I did love reading about the contested origins of “pussy” and all the lengths linguists have gone to pin that one down.  

Who is your favorite famous cat?

Tough question. If you mean live action cat, it’s probably Pet Sematary’s Church or Bell, Book and Candle’s Pyewacket. If you mean animated cat, it’s Cleo from Heathcliff or Arlene from Garfield. If you mean celebrity/internet cat, I’m going to go with Butters; she is the absolute cutest! 

Cat Call goes deep into the history of the feral feminine while also involving modern takes like hashtags and pussyhats. How did you balance stories from the past with stories from the present?

In all my work, what I’m most fascinated by is the interplay between past and present — like, for example, how we can see the expression of thousand-year-old ideologies in today’s Twitter hashtags — so I sort of balance the book with a 1:1 ratio. Every time I talk about something from history I ground it in the present, or, conversely, every time I talk about some pop culture thing from recent times I trace it back to its cultural antecedents as best I can. 

Do you have any particular rituals for when you write? 

I love writing first thing in the morning before I’ve read any emails or checked social media in an attempt to catch the still lingering tails of the dream state. I also love waking up in the middle of the night and writing too, if I’m so moved. I have a writing charm that’s made of fluorite that I bought during the writing of my first book that I try to wear when possible, and sometimes I do automatic writing without trying to think my way through a passage or an idea. However, I know sometimes there is no magical feeling, there is no gust of inspiration carrying you through, so often my ritual is drinking a huge glass of lemon water and getting the fuck to work no matter how I feel. 

We talked a bit about this in person, but I worked for the company that owned icanhascheezburger.com for five years. One really curious thing about the Internet and cats is how that website started out with a young male demographic and eventually ended up swaying heavily female — and older. On each posted lolcat, “cheezfrenz” would gather in the comments and talk in lolspeak about their day; there were hundreds of comments per post. It was wild! What do you think about that?

First of all I am jealous of your job! I was definitely a Cheezburger fan back in the day although I was more in the Cute Overload scene myself. I’m not surprised that the engagement swayed female because there are so many more proscriptions against men and masculine folks getting down hard with animals and cute culture. I have a lot of male friends, but all day long who do I send cat memes and pictures to? Mostly women. I think you can also point to the long-running associations between femininity and cats (and animals and animality in general) as another reason why women and feminine folks feel more comfortable and drawn to communicating in that milieu. 

You adopted a new cat while working on the book, and dedicated it to her. Can you tell us more about Cherie Purrie and how she informs your writing?

Cherie Purrie is named after The Runaways’ singer Cherie Currie and I got her serendipitously when I was midway through writing Cat Call. She loves to put her paws on the edge of my laptop if I’m in bed writing or squeeze between the back of the chair and my back if I’m at my desk. I find her presence really calming yet energizing, and she inspired me to get my first cat tarot reading from Sarah Potter which I document in Cat Call as well! I spend a lot of time trading slow blinks with her trying to decompress.  

I’m personally curious about what it’s like to do scholarly work that intersects with both pop culture and the occult — two things “scholars” often deride. Is it hard to find a place where you feel like you belong? Have you found that place, and what would you call it? 

I don’t actually think I’ve found a place where I fit in really… I often feel I’m too pop or too weird for the “real” academics and too academic for “everyday” readers. Of course I am very grateful to get to combine my interests in a way that straddles academia, the occult, and pop culture, although I do feel that high culture/low culture divide (which is classist/elitist/annoying but it does absolutely exist) informs how people approach me and my work. Either my books are too “cute” or “fluffy” (ha) for the folks who love dense, complex theory that takes a lifetime of education to decipher (or too woo-woo and out there for the positivists/rationalists), or my work is too theoretical for folks who want a light read. Thankfully there seems to be a sliver of readers who enjoy my writing and I’m so stoked they do! In the end, you just have to write what and how you’re called to, so that’s what I’ll keep doing without trying to pretzel myself into unnatural shapes to be more palatable for more people.

I already asked what the weirdest thing you researched was, but was there anything that really surprised you? Something where, upon reading it, made you think either “wow, that makes so much sense” or a strange fact you still can’t come to terms with?

I think the fact that we can trace the disparagement of female cats — and, by extension, human women — back to Aristotle is pretty wild. Like, the Father of Western Philosophy took the time to call out cats for being sluts in a foundational zoological text?! Really?! I guess I’ll never get over the surprise of how you can trace so many of our contemporary ideas about cats directly to a statement made in the 4th century BC. 

Can you tell us what your next project is? 

I’m moving into the realm of travel writing, which, as a lifelong, avid traveler, is a total dream. My next book (also out on Weiser Books) will be the first exploration of the early modern European and American witch hunts in the form of an action-packed travelogue. I have spent years visiting historical sites for my own enjoyment, and now I finally get to write about it all! The book will be one you can literally use as a travel guide to significant witchy sites across Europe and the US, but is equally compelling for anyone interested in approaching the witch archetype and the witch hunts through the lens of place. There’s a lot more I could say but I will keep the rest under wraps for now…

Cat Call is available now from Amazon and IndieBound, and signed copies in the Haute Macabre Shop.


Leave a Comment more...

Gothic Splendor

by on Oct.21, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Leave a Comment more...

Gothic Splendor

by on Oct.21, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Leave a Comment more...

Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures In Hell

by on Oct.19, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

The now turned cult classic (at least, priced as such) “Diableries” is releasing a second edition later this month – naturally, its street date falls on Halloween.

Compiled by Brian May, Queen founding member turned astrophysicist, with Denis Pellering and Paula Richardson Fleming, both photo historians, the group has revitalised the nineteenth century French fascination with tableaux depicting life in hell, better known as Diableries.

In France, around 1860, from the loins of a traditional national fascination with all things diabolical, was born a new sensation – a series of visionary dioramas depicting life in a strange parallel universe called ENFER – Hell – communicated to an eager audience by means of stereoscopic cards, to be viewed in the stereoscopes which had already become popular in the 1850s. This 3-D phenomenon, which fascinated a nation for 40 years, is yours to share. 

You may order the book directly from the publisher in the UK, or via Amazon.


Leave a Comment more...

Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures In Hell

by on Oct.19, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from | Go to Original Post

The now turned cult classic (at least, priced as such) “Diableries” is releasing a second edition later this month – naturally, its street date falls on Halloween.

Compiled by Brian May, Queen founding member turned astrophysicist, with Denis Pellering and Paula Richardson Fleming, both photo historians, the group has revitalised the nineteenth century French fascination with tableaux depicting life in hell, better known as Diableries.

In France, around 1860, from the loins of a traditional national fascination with all things diabolical, was born a new sensation – a series of visionary dioramas depicting life in a strange parallel universe called ENFER – Hell – communicated to an eager audience by means of stereoscopic cards, to be viewed in the stereoscopes which had already become popular in the 1850s. This 3-D phenomenon, which fascinated a nation for 40 years, is yours to share. 

You may order the book directly from the publisher in the UK, or via Amazon.


Leave a Comment more...

Obolus: Jamie Draven + Heather Gabel

by on Oct.18, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Leave a Comment more...

Something Wicked this Day 17 Comes with Lisa McNeely

by on Oct.17, 2019, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from The Gothtober Blog | Go to Original Post

Visit Gothtober 2019 and Check out DAY 17!

Truth be told, at the end of the day, bouncing from one mean boss to the next is not a very effective formula for finding satisfaction at work. It might be natural to want to get away from a nasty boss. Sometimes the best course of action is to work inside one’s own sphere of influence. We’ve heard that making a line of pure salt in the doorway can neutralize a particularly hellish boss.

If, however, Satan is your boss, your job is just gonna be a thousand flaming tons of awful. No career book or crisp career advice is going to shape a better experience for you, this is what eternal damnation looks like. We’re sorry to say that you are SOL.

Watch and learn, people, watch and learn.

Thank you, Lisa McNeely and associates, for a lil’ trip to the Devil’s infernal lair! Happy Gothtober!

Leave a Comment more...

Site Representation Request

If you have a relevant website and wish to be represented on GothicHoliday.com, please send a link to your site with a brief description and be sure to include a note granting permission to include your content. Send requests to netherworldnetwork[at]comcast[dot]net with the subject line "content feed permission" and we will be happy to consider adding your site to our family of associated websites.

Information Content Disclaimer

The views and opinions stated in any and all of the articles represented on this site are solely those of the contributing author or authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of GothicHoliday.com, The Netherworld Network, its parent company or any affiliated companies, or any individual, groups, or companies mentioned in articles on this site.