Lights Out: Mars Hill Cemetery

Welcome to another Lights Out episode! If you knew about a church and cemetery out in the middle of nowhere, that was supposed to be haunted because of Satanic activity … would you go check it out? I did, and you can come along with me. https://youtu.be/PDx9Si2nT4k

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Lights Out: Malvern Manor

Gather ’round the virtual campfire — it’s time for another episode of Lights Out! Malvern Manor, in Malvern, Iowa, was once a grand, gracious hotel, the pride of the town. Through the years it played host to a very different clientele: it became a nursing home, then a home for transients, closing in 2005. Do some of these lost souls still roam Malvern Manor’s halls and curl up on the mattresses in the abandoned rooms? Join me and find out! https://youtu.be/aBd5tKtkDy0

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An Extra Christmas Present

This holiday season, my friend Elizabeth Koelle suggested a return to the grand old Christmas tradition of telling ghost stories. She’s right — ghost stories are a great way to celebrate the darkest, spookiest days of the year. A roaring fire, good things to eat, a glass or mug of something lovely, and wonderful entertainment … I can’t think of a better way to spend a winter’s evening.

Here is a true ghost story from my collection Spirits of Christmas: The Dark Side of the Holidays. Enjoy!

Footprints in the Snow

It was a cold winter afternoon early in the last century. A mother huddled in her cabin on the west fork of the Little Pigeon River in Tennessee. She held two of her children in a tight embrace … but one was missing. Her two-year-old son had wandered away from the cabin earlier that day. Since then, the temperature had been falling steadily, along with a heavy snow.

A neighbor came in, stamping the snow from his boots, to grab a few moments’ warmth by the fire. The mother looked up, hope dawning briefly in her eyes—then looked back down, defeated, at the shake of the neighbor’s head. She was grateful, of course, that all the menfolk were out looking for her precious lost little one. Word had been passed from cabin to homestead, from house to church, and soon the entire community was out looking. Her own husband was off in Europe in the trenches, fighting the Germans. All she could do was pray that one of the neighbors would find her little boy—and soon.

Dr. Thomas appeared at the door of the cabin. He’d dressed warmly for the trudge through the woods. He’d come thinking to help the young mother. One look at her stricken face, though, and he realized that he could best help not by doctoring her, but by finding her missing son. Pulling his heavy overcoat closed, he headed out into the snowstorm with the other searchers.

Dr. Thomas struck off in a random direction, hoping he was looking at ground that hadn’t already been covered. With the snow falling so thickly, the footprints of the searching men were soon being covered over. Dr. Thomas held his lantern high in the gathering dusk as he scanned the area.

The shadows of the evening crowded close under the pines as the last light of day slipped away. The doctor stopped for a moment, listening to the silence of the woods. Somewhere, he knew, men were searching for the little boy with dogs. But he hadn’t yet heard the deep bay of a hound on a scent.

All around him, the snow fell in a silent hush. The branches of the pines swayed with the wind, even as laden with snow as they were. As night fell, the snowstorm grew worse. Dr. Thomas trudged along the dwindling path in the woods, stopping every so often to look closely at any fallen log that might shelter a shivering little boy. His toes were beginning to go numb, even with the three pairs of thick woolen socks he wore. But he kept wandering the woods, his lantern held high in search of any sign of the boy. If he was cold, the toddler would be even worse off.

Dr. Thomas stopped and turned in a slow circle. He couldn’t give up hope, not while the boy was still out there lost in the storm. He held his lantern high … and there on the ground was one footprint. Dr. Thomas bent closer to study it. It wasn’t the track of a deer, or a dog.

It was the footprint of a child. A child who was barefoot.

The doctor’s heart leapt, and adrenaline spun in his cold fingers and toes, warming them briefly. Finally, here was some sign of the boy! The doctor looked around carefully for more footprints.

There was another one, and a third! The bare footprints were just visible in the hard-packed old snow, and as the doctor watched, more appeared, the feathery new snow blowing off of the old prints. Carefully, the doctor followed the prints. As soon as he passed the last one, the next one appeared, leading him further into the woods. The doctor no longer cursed the biting wind, because oddly enough, the wind seemed to be blowing the fresh snow off of the prints, revealing the path the barefoot toddler had taken through the woods.

Dr. Thomas followed the footprints as they led him to a patch of evergreens. The doctor lifted a low-hanging branch, and gasped. There, curled up on a soft bed of fallen pine needles, was the young boy. But the doctor had come too late. The boy’s skin was waxy-white, and his little chest didn’t rise and fall with peaceful sleeping breath.

The boy had frozen to death in the storm.

Dr. Thomas stifled a low moan, and gathered the child up in his arms. He unbuttoned his coat and his woolen shirt, and cradled the boy to his chest. The boy had died in the freezing cold. Although it was too late, the doctor could at least keep him warm for the sad walk home. He rebuttoned his coat and headed back to the cabin.

As the doctor approached the cabin, the young mother came out to meet him. Seeing her there, silhouetted against the yellow glow of the lit cabin behind her, Dr. Thomas felt his spirits sink. How could he break this woman’s heart?

The mother caught sight of the doctor, with his sad burden, and ran to him. Dr. Thomas reached the open cabin door just as the woman came out, crying joyful tears at the return of her baby. The doctor unbuttoned his coat and opened his shirt.

“I’m so sorry. At least I found him …”

And to his shock, the little boy blinked sleepy brown eyes at him. The child turned his head, hearing his mother’s cry of joy. “Momma?”

Stunned, Dr. Thomas handed the toddler to his mother, who cuddled him fiercely. She looked up, tears of gratitude standing in her eyes.

“Thank you, doctor, thank you so much. You saved my little boy. Please, come inside and get warm.”

The doctor followed her into the cabin. His analytical mind fumbled for an explanation. The boy must have been chilled to the point where his vitals had slowed, putting him into a state of suspended animation. The walk back, cuddled against the doctor’s warm chest and wrapped in the heavy overcoat, must have warmed the child slowly, enough for him to recover with no harm done. The gentle warming had brought the child back to life as surely as a violet blooms in the spring. Vaguely, he became aware that the boy’s mother was still talking.

“I’m so grateful to you for finding him!” She kissed the toddler, who sighed sleepily in her arms.

Dr. Thomas roused himself from his thoughts. “Yes, I followed his footprints in the snow. I’m amazed he was able to wander so far with bare feet.”

“Bare feet?” the mother said, puzzled. “But he’s wearing shoes.”

Frowning, Dr. Thomas lifted one of the boy’s feet. Sure enough, the boy was wearing sturdy brogans.

“I have to tie his shoes on tightly, with double knots, so he won’t kick them off,” the mother explained.

“Here, have some coffee, it’ll warm you right up. Good job!” a neighbor said, putting a tin cup into the doctor’s hand. Dr. Thomas accepted the congratulations and heartfelt thanks of his neighbors. The little boy was safe. That was all that mattered.

But the doctor’s scientific mind wouldn’t rest until he’d figured out the answer to the mystery. Several nights later, he woke from a sound sleep, sitting bolt upright in bed, reeling from a thunderclap of realization.

The wind hadn’t blown the fresh snow off of the child’s old prints. The bare footprints had been appearing in the snow, step by step, as he’d been following them. He hadn’t been tracking a living child. He’d been following an invisible child—a ghost, or an angel.

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The Twelve Nightmares of Christmas, Day Eight: Creepy Boston

Holden Chapel, at Cambridge in Boston, is said to be haunted by the spirit of a young woman who suffered a tragic loss. In the 1800s, a Miss Pickham was enjoying a sleigh ride with her fiance when the horse pulling the sleigh trotted onto a patch of black ice. The horse’s feet went out from under it, and the sleigh wrecked, flipping its passengers out onto the pavement. The hysterical bride-to-be crawled from the wreckage, only to discover her fiance lying motionless nearby. His neck was broken in the crash, and he died in her arms as she cradled him, sobbing uncontrollably.

The young man was laid to rest in the Old Burial Ground, which was nearby. But Miss Pickham never got over the loss of her love. She was well aware that “resurrection men” prowled the graveyard in search of fresh burials. The grave robbers would dig up the fresh corpses and sell them to Harvard for dissection in the medical school labs. The young woman spent the rest of her life at her family’s home nearby, lamenting the early death of her lover and the loss of a lifetime with him.  And with the first snowfall every year, her old paranoia and suspicion would be rekindled. She would escape the house and run shrieking to the door of the laboratory, pounding on it, demanding justice, until she was dragged away, sobbing and exhausted, by family members.

Even today, a female spirit is said to appear during the first snowstorm of the year. She howls and wails, still mourning her lost love, never letting us forget her pain.

The interesting postscript to this story is that when Holden Chapel was renovated in 1999, archaeologists were allowed to conduct a dig in the basement. Their excavation turned up the usual detritus associated with a medical laboratory, broken test tubes and glassware and such. But the archaeologists also found human remains — including skeletons whose bones had been sawed apart, a sure sign of dissection.

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The Twelve Nightmares of Christmas, Day Six: The Kallikantzaroi

Kallikantzaroi – The Holiday Demons of Armageddon

The kallikantzaroi are Greek demons who can vary in appearance. Sometimes they are described as gigantic hairy demons with a pair of horse legs and boar tusks, and at other times they are just described as small black Satanic-looking imps. They are said to eat frogs and other adorable woodland creatures.

According to Greek folklore, the kallikantzaroi spend most of the year living underground, sawing at the trunk of the World Tree. The World Tree’s trunk connects the earth to the heavens, and keeps the heavens from crashing down onto the earth. In other words, the kallikantzaroi spend all year long trying to destroy the world.

They are usually nearly finished on Christmas Eve, but they are allowed to come up to the earth’s surface during the twelve days of Christmas. So at dawn on Christmas Day, the goblins come topside and wreak all kinds of havoc, mayhem, and murder (if they can get away with it). Fortunately for the world’s continued existence, the damaged trunk of the World Tree heals itself completely during the time the demons are away on the surface. On January 6, the demons return to the underworld and start their destruction of the tree trunk once more.

Any child born within the twelve days of Christmas ran the risk, when reaching adulthood, of turning into a kallikantzaros themselves. The antidote for this was to swaddle the baby in wisps of straw or braids of garlic, and to singe the child’s toenails.

Fortunately, there are ways to protect yourself against the kallikantzaroi. One is to leave a Yule log burning for all twelve days of Christmas, so the demons can’t enter your house through the chimney. Another method is to toss a pair of smelly old shoes onto a fire. The stink of burning sweat and shoe leather repels the demons, possibly because it reminds them of the stink of the underworld.

Another way to protect yourself against a murderous kallikantzaros is to leave a colander on your doorstep. A kallikantzaros can’t count above two. Because three is a holy number, pronouncing it will make the demon explode. So it sits on the doorstep all night, trying in vain to count the holes in the colander, and completely forgetting that it wanted to get into your house to kill you. (Excerpted from Spirits of Christmas: The Dark Side of the Holidays, by Sylvia Shults)

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The Twelve Nightmares of Christmas, Day Five: Throwback … Um … Tuesday.

Welcome to the Dead of Winter! Today we’re going to revisit a couple of Lights Out episodes from years past.

Lights Out #66: Christmas 2018 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvAANf27Eb4&t=4s

Lights Out #52: Christmas 2017 — The Roving Skeleton of Boston Bay https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1o74O6A-aw&t=27s

Lights Out #51: Plymouth Courthouse https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZY-ntKexJk

Lights Out #32: Christmas 2016 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Alg6AOjuQvE&t=6s

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Lights Out: Volo Antique Mall

Here’s another episode of Lights Out for your entertainment! Antique stores can be very haunted places, just by being the repositories of bunches upon bunches of family heirlooms. Come visit an extraordinarily haunted store with me; the Volo Antique Mall. Featured on Discovery Channel’s Ghost Lab, this sprawling complex houses over 400 classic cars, thousands of antiques — and a few spirits. https://youtu.be/8nvVr2mfp3E

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Lights Out — Zion Cemetery

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Welcome to another episode of Lights Out! Zion Cemetery is a little graveyard hidden away among the cornfields of Illinois. It has a reputation among local paranormal investigators as a place to chase ghosts. As it happens, the reputation is well-deserved. Join me and investigator James Brija for a peek behind the iron gates of Zion Cemetery. https://youtu.be/2VbUil_9dF8

Inadvertently Humorous Cemetery Art

I’m one of those people who enjoy wandering around cemeteries. In particular, I love seeing how people choose to remember their loved ones, both in the stones they choose and in the more ephemeral decorations they leave at the grave site. Most of these tributes are wonderfully touching.

But sometimes, the artwork sends … a different message.

 

As I wandered around Mount Carmel cemetery a few weeks ago, I noticed a beautiful little mausoleum near the end of the row.

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If you walk closer, and peer inside the tomb, you can see a gorgeous piece of stained glass artwork at the back of the structure — a picture of Jesus as the Lamb of God.

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I walked around the mausoleum, and discovered to my horrified delight that if you look at it from the opposite direction … it looks like Jesus has landed Himself in the slammer.

Just in Time for Halloween…

My husband is a complete skeptic. He doesn’t believe in ghosts, or things that go bump in the night. He doesn’t even believe in an afterlife.

But he loves me, and that’s what counts. And because he loves me, he got me a present during his last trip to Goodwill.

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That’s right … my dear, sweet, loving husband bought his ghost-hunter wife a Ouija board. It appears to be a Parker Brothers throwback from the mid-1980s, with suggested questions on the box like “Will I star in my own music video?” and “Does Taylor like me?”

Oh, and it glows in the dark. 😀 (So, his reasoning went, I can use it on investigations even if we’re lights-out. Good thinking, love.)

I know my friends are going to be, in about equal measures, intrigued and appalled that I now own a Ouija board of my very own. (I myself am intrigued and appalled in about equal measures.)

 

But it glows in the dark.

 

That’s going to give me the giggles for weeks.

Listener Feedback

I’m having so much fun being a guest on Ron’s Amazing Stories every month. And happily, our listeners seem to enjoy our back and forth banter too. Ron was kind enough to share an email he got from one of our listeners.

“Hello Ron — First let me say what so many others have said, you have the most unique podcast out there. Your mix and mash of stories is wonderful and fun to listen to. You asked, ‘What is our favorite segment?’ For me, hands down, it’s Ghost Stories With Sylvia. You guys seem to like each other and have a lot of fun. I do have a question for the both of you. Do you agree on what ghosts and spirits are? I am betting this question is going to spark a debate.”  — Jeanette Porter, Harwick, PA

For the answer, just take a listen to our show. You can find it here: http://www.ronsamazingstories.com/

Lights Out: Galena, Illinois

Here’s another fun episode of Lights Out for your delectation and enjoyment! Galena, Illinois, is a pretty little touristy town, that is loaded with ghost lore. Come along with me for a tour of this haunted place. We’ll join Steve Repp for his All About A Ghost tour. Steve is a great storyteller with a lovely, self-deprecating sense of humor — he even let slip a couple of “dad jokes” as we walked around. His tours are $15, and well worth the scratch. I highly recommend catching a tour if you’re in town. https://youtu.be/GIaRnqai02I

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October’s the Month for Scary!

So last night, I bundled up a blanket, an afghan, a thermos of hot sweet tea, and some picnic snackies, and went down the street to lay on the grass and watch the meteor shower. I didn’t see any meteors, but I spent an enjoyable twenty minutes or so listening to the old-time radio episode presented by Ron’s Amazing Stories.

This podcast features the most highly regarded episode of the old-time radio series Quiet, Please. It is called The Thing on the Fourble Board. This story has led both fans and OTR experts to label the episode one of the best radio horror programs ever broadcast. Richard J. Hand of the University of Glamorgan notes that “The Thing on the Fourble Board” is not only cited as the finest example of radio horror but occasionally cited as one of the best examples of radio drama as a whole. RAS401-Thing-100819.mp3

Ron says, “An oil rig worker discovers an invisible creature of unknown origins living beneath the depths of the earth. What happens to this man is horrific, and the ending is absolutely brilliant. If you’re alone, turn the lights down low and listen. It will help get you into a Halloween mood.”

So, you guys want to know what’ll freak me out? I was wondering the same thing. Last night, I found out. After listening to “The Thing on the Fourble Board” at night, by myself, I was quite thoroughly creeped out. Thank you, Ron, for giving me such a deliciously spooky experience!

Thoughts on the Afterlife

So the other day, at the library, I was checking books in, and I came across a book by a doctor who had clinically died, visited the afterlife, and come back to tell the tale. My first thought was, hey cool, here we have an actual sciencey-type person who can back up our theories on the afterlife. That’s great!

And then, I thought, why do we NEED someone to back up our theories? I mean, I personally believe in an afterlife. I know many people do not, and that’s their own business. I happen to believe in an afterlife the same way I believe that if I drop an apple on the floor, it’s going to fall down, and not float off sideways.

But WHY do I believe this? Why do I, and sooooo many other people, believe that death is not the end? Just to play devil’s advocate here for a second, evidence of the paranormal can be faked. Pictures can be faked. Ghost voices can be faked. I can sit here and tell you that I saw a full-body apparition in my bedroom. You may believe me, you may not. But you only have my word for it. Am I telling the truth? Or am I making up stories to get attention? (Full disclosure, in case anyone’s keeping score: I have never ever ever faked evidence. Any story I tell, is true as far as I experienced it.)

Here’s the thing my mind dropped on me as I looked at the book by the scientist: maybe we believe in an afterlife because we have evolved to believe in an afterlife. In the same way we are unique on earth in having opposable thumbs, and we cry with emotion, and we’ve developed religion, maybe we have ghosts because we have evolved to have ghosts. Maybe the human spirit is SO unique and SO powerful, some of that psychic residue sort of hangs around after that particular organism has died. And sometimes, the lucky ones among those that are left behind can see or hear or sense that psychic residue.

And that means we are not alone.

Lights Out: Peoria State Hospital Cottage

Oh boy, do I have a treat for you! It’s another episode of Lights Out, your virtual campfire. And we’re going back to the hilltop! The Peoria State Hospital closed in 1973, but it is still a very active place. The Peoria State Hospital Museum is preparing to move into its new, permanent home: one of the cottages that remain on the hilltop. This building is steeped in history, and it even has its own ghost story. Join me for a very special sneak peek inside the building. https://youtu.be/d6nh_4SIabc

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Book News!

Hello to everyone out there in electron-land! I hope you’re about to kick off a great weekend.

For fans of Fractured Spirits, and those who are waiting oh-so-patiently (or not-so-patiently) for Fractured Souls, I have some news. Someone has already ordered a copy from Amazon — thank you! And I did get a big box of preorder copies to send out to all you wonderful people.

But! When the books arrived, I looked through them, and they had egregious printer’s errors in them. You guys trust me to bring you a quality reading experience, and … this was not it. I’ve contacted the publisher, and we are working hard to fix this, and get you good-looking copies of the book — the book you all deserve.

This means, though, that the copy currently up on Amazon is also … flawed. Again, I got in touch with the publisher, and he says that he can’t make that one an un-book — all he can do is put up a corrected copy when it’s all fixed. Again, as soon as the corrected copy is available, I’ll let you know, and you can then feel free to order from Amazon. (And hey, maybe if you’ve already ordered a wonky copy, it’ll be worth buttloads of money someday! You never know…)

Meanwhile, I have a special gift for you guys. In a couple of weeks, Lights Out will feature a sneak peek into one of the men’s cottages at the PSH, the building that will soon become the permanent home of the Peoria State Hospital Museum. So, enjoy the look into Cottage B1, and I promise to let you know as soon as GOOD copies of Fractured Souls become available. Now go out and get this weekend started!

More Lovely News Bits!

If you’ve noticed (and it’s perfectly okay if you haven’t), there’s a new heading at the top of this page. It’s called Multimedia Links for Books, and boy is it ever cool!

See, if you’ve gotten Fractured Souls or Fractured Spirits, and you’re sitting there reading it, you may notice that there are little cartoon ghosties sprinkled throughout the text, in both the ebook and print versions. Those wee ghosties are there for a reason. Whenever you see one of these little dudes, that’s your signal that fun stuff awaits you on the Interwebs.

If you are reading along, and you say to yourself, “Boy, that video (or sound file) sure sounds interesting! I’d love to watch it (or listen to it),” well, guess what? You can! Just pop on up to the Multimedia Links for Books tab, or if you’re on Facebook, go to the Fractured Spirits page and click on Notes to find a page of links. You can browse through all that evidence to your heart’s content. Enjoy!

The Latest News …

Okay, you guys all know me. You know that when one of my friends has something to celebrate, I’m up there cheering right along with them. Well, I have some fabulous news, of the “rising tide lifts all boats” kind.

In January, Ron Hood, of Ron’s Amazing Stories, asked me to be a regular guest on his show once a month, with the segment “Ghost Stories With Sylvia”. (I’d been a yearly guest before that, appearing on “Ron’s Month of Spooky” five years running.) We have been having a dandy time, sitting around talking about things that go bump in the night.

I recently found out that Ron has been successful at getting “Ron’s Amazing Stories” onto Pandora! You read that right — my friend’s podcast now appears as part of the lineup on freakin’ Pandora. Which means that, once a month, I get to be on Pandora too! I am so very stoked!

So, congratulations, Ron, and I am SO looking forward to many, many more months of Ghost Stories With Sylvia. Thank you so much for inviting me to be a part of your show. ❤

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Hi there! Hey, you look great! Did you do something new with your hair?

. . .

So guess what? The wait for the new asylum book is (nearly) over! I’m jazzed to be able to tell you that the ebook version of Fractured Souls is now available, and now … drum roll please … I can show you this magnificent cover, courtesy of Christina Morris and volunteers at the Pollak Hospital. The building in the background of the photo, by the way, is not the Pollak — it’s one of the B Row cottages, the building that will become the new and permanent home of the Peoria State Hospital Museum.

“Sylvia, how do I get the ebook?” I hear you cry. Fractured Souls is available in Kindle , mobi, and epub formats. The Kindle version is up on Amazon right freakin’ now, and here’s the link: https://www.amazon.com/Fractured-Souls-Hauntings-Peoria-Hospital-ebook/dp/B07TY8R9ZH/ref=sr_1_5?keywords=sylvia+shults&qid=1562984175&s=gateway&sr=8-5

As it’s a new book, it’s priced at $4.99. For the price of a Starbucks iced latte (which, admittedly, is really quite appealing this time of year), you can immerse yourself in the history and hauntings of the Peoria State Hospital. And unlike the iced latte, you can enjoy the book more than once! (Unless it turns out that you’re deathly allergic to coffee, and it comes back up, and … okay, you can still only enjoy the latte once, my bad.)

And to those who preordered the print version: you guys rock. Seriously. That means a whole lot — it lets the publisher know that people out there are eager to read the book, even plunking down cash (or PayPal) on the table for a book that doesn’t even have turnable pages yet. And it gives me a huge confidence boost too — thank you so much for placing your trust in me, to give you a good read. It’s coming. I promise. And when it does come out, I’ll announce it here, so you can get a heads-up that your copy will soon be in your mailbox. Thank you all for your patience.

(PS, you guys can see the cover too! Here it is:)

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Lights Out: St. Louis Canyon

Here’s another episode of Lights Out, for your listening pleasure! The area around Starved Rock State Park in Illinois is breathtakingly gorgeous. But the park itself has a dark history. Join us as we visit St. Louis Canyon, where three women were brutally murdered in March 1960. We’ll also visit Moon Point Cemetery outside Streator in search of the Hatchet Lady. https://youtu.be/j0N-Igp8298

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Oh Say Can You Hear …

I’ve got some very cool news to share! First of all, I found out from my good friend and colleague Ron Hood that his show, Ron’s Amazing Stories (which includes the monthly installment of Ghost Stories With Sylvia) is now sponsored by Audible. That’s really great news, because now, when you listen to Ron’s show and click on the Audible link to get a free trial, the show gets a bit of coin, and you get to keep listening to this fabulous show for FREE. (You can listen to this podcast on Thursdays at Ron’s Amazing Stories, download it from iTunes, stream it on Stitcher Radio or on the mobile version of Spotify. Do you prefer the radio? They are heard every Sunday Night at 8:00 PM (PST) on AMFM247.COM.)

And the second part of the very cool news is that one of my books, 44 Years in Darkness, is now available on … Audible! So if you wanted to do the whole “two birds, one stone” thing, you could listen to Ron’s show, get yourself a free trial, and — ta-dah! — listen to the incredible story of Rhoda Derry, one of the patients at the Peoria State Hospital. (The publisher told me that the narrator was in tears several times as she was reading it. It’s that good.)

So go! Check out Ron’s show — the next Ghost Stories With Sylvia will air on July 4, BTW — and while you’re there, support the show by giving Audible a try. And while you’re at Audible, check out 44 Years in Darkness. See? Circle of life, baby.

And Ron says that since he’s such a stand-up guy, he’s giving you guys a free link! Here it is: https://www.audible.com/ep/podcast?source_code=%20PDTGBPD060314004R&fbclid=IwAR1N6smqE7RP0joTLfP1sXDoX9QWff5oskPvjJAvARKs4yWYVEp9yEIxn-0

Book Review: The Murderer’s Maid, by Erika Mailman

Four and a half stars. I’m a sucker for anything related to Lizzie Borden, just because her case is SO strange and the family relationships SO dysfunctional. Mailman does an amazing job of describing the atmosphere leading up to the Borden murders, casting LOADS of suspicion on Lizzie while never quite coming out and saying she’s the one whodunnit. (And I could tell Mailman had done her research. I’ve been to the Borden home, and I was able to mentally follow the characters through the house — it was almost as fun as going back for a return visit!)

The modern story was well-done too, and had me guessing up ’til the end. There were parts of the modern story I did NOT see coming, which is always super fun.

Mailman took a certain liberty with Lizzie’s story, in order to link it to the present day, but I’ll allow that for the sake of the storytelling. 🙂 All in all, I would recommend this to anyone interested in Lizzie Borden’s story. Well done!

The Murderer's Maid by Erika Mailman