Kolchak: They Have Been, They Are, They Will Be…

Spaceship

By Kathryn L Ramage

This isn’t one of my favorite episodes; I routinely skip over it on the DVD. But I’ll bet that Chris Carter, creator of The X-Files, likes it more than I do. He’s always attributed the inspiration for his own show to his teenaged watching of the Kolchak series, and you can certainly see some inspiring points in this particular episode.

Carl Kolchak sits at his desk in the INS offices, speaking into his pocket tape recorder:

I knew this would be more than the biggest story of my career. It was the biggest story in …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Storylandia 20: “Cannonfire” PREVIEW

By Ginger Mayerson

Storylandia, Issue 20
Winter 2017

PREVIEW

Cannonfire
By Lane Kareska

1899–1914:

Tribal… a dark and criminal mind… older brother… wandering alchemist… widow’s humiliation… the larger world… gypsies.

You know my name.

For the record.

Doctor Khatanbaatar Namnansüren.

Aliases…

You know my aliases…

Your mask. Speak clearly please. Aliases.

Cannonfire Khan. Nam the Cannonfire Man. Cannonfire Xan. Namnan Sussex. Doctor Eric Buck. Doctor Arne Scholes-Young. Doctor Leon Southset. Lord Conrad Sussex.

Age.

100. I think. Perhaps 101.

Education.

Informal.

Place of birth.

I do not know the exact place of birth.

Be as specific as you can.

Somewhere on the slopes of the Kharidal Soridag Range. Within forty kilometers of the Bolot village, or what …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Christmas Mysteries

The Blue Carbuncle

By Kathryn L Ramage

For years, I collected different film & TV versions of A Christmas Carol on DVD and watched them around this time of year, until I got thoroughly sick of Tiny Tim and Jacob Marley and “Humbug!” and the rest of it.

I began to look around for other holiday-themed viewing, and eventually turned to the extensive number of mystery stories I have on the shelves. How many of them are set at Christmas, so I could watch bodies pile up at English country houses and missing jewels turn up in weird places over a holiday …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Kolchak: The Zombie

Zombie on a crosstown bus

By Kathryn L Ramage

The second episode of Kolchak: The Night Stalker breaks away from the template established by the two made-for-TV movies that the show was based upon. And it’s educational as well!
No exotic dancers, massage-parlor employees, or anybody else dressed like Barbara Eden get murdered this time; it’s a clash between Italian mobsters and a black numbers-running syndicate that drives the plot of this episode. All the victims are men.

This story was co-written by David Chase, who would go on later in his career to write a great deal more about mobsters, but sadly …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Kolchak: The Ripper

The Ripper

By Kathryn L Ramage

Carl Kolchak (Darrin McGavin, now and for always) is riding on an El train through Chicago and talking into his little pocket tape-recorder. Although his lip movements don’t match the narrative voice-over, this is what he says to get our story started on the right note:

“If by chance you happened to be in the Windy City between May 28 and June 2 of this year, you would have had very good reason to be terrified. During this period, Chicago was being stalked by a horror so frightening, so fascinating, that it ranks with the …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

CD Review: Return to Collinwood

Return to Collinwood

By Kathryn L Ramage

I’m not done with Dark Shadows yet. An extra feature on one of the final DVDs for the television series, after the last episodes, was about an audio play written by Jamison Selby, David Selby’s son; it was performed by some of the show’s actors at fan conventions in the early 2000s, then they went into a studio and recorded it.

I checked for it on Amazon. Still available!

The story is on 2 discs. Some of the actors play their old, familiar characters again. Nancy Barrett is Carolyn Stoddard, now owner of Collinwood since …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Excerpt from “Who Killed Toby Glovins?”

Toby Glovins cover detail

By Kathryn L Ramage

The bride’s and groom’s friends prepare decorations in the garden the evening before the wedding…

The last chain of flowers was finished as the sun sank out of sight behind the garden wall. Bicky and, at his brother’s insistence, Dotty joined the girls and Felix to help hang the garlands up around the bower frame. Evelyn, who had been working swiftly to finish before sunset, put down the knife he’d been using to trim the flower-stems, washed the green stains from his hands in the water from one of the tubs, and hastily left. Phillip …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

The Ghost of a Tower

Layer Marney towers

By Kathryn L Ramage

Or, the story behind a cover photo.

The photograph for the cover of Who Killed Toby Glovins? was taken at a place called Layer Marney, which is about 1/2 an hour’s drive outside Colchester in the UK. I went there at the end of the same day I wandered around the lanes of the Suffolk countryside in search of Abbotshill; after I visited Lavenham, I drove south again down around the other side of the city. This was my last stop of the day.

Let’s call this part of the …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

The Ghost of a Tower

Layer Marney towers

By Kathryn L Ramage

Or, the story behind a cover photo.

The photograph for the cover of Who Killed Toby Glovins? was taken at a place called Layer Marney, which is about 1/2 an hour’s drive outside Colchester in the UK. I went there at the end of the same day I wandered around the lanes of the Suffolk countryside in search of Abbotshill; after I visited Lavenham, I drove south again down around the other side of the city. This was my last stop of the day.

Let’s call this part of the …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

The Ghost of a Tower

Layer Marney towers

By Kathryn L Ramage

Or, the story behind a cover photo.

The photograph for the cover of Who Killed Toby Glovins? was taken at a place called Layer Marney, which is about 1/2 an hour’s drive outside Colchester in the UK. I went there at the end of the same day I wandered around the lanes of the Suffolk countryside in search of Abbotshill; after I visited Lavenham, I drove south again down around the other side of the city. This was my last stop of the day.

Let’s call this part of the …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

DVD Review: Night/Curse of the Demon

Dana Andrews said prunes gave him the runes...

By Kathryn L Ramage

This 1957 film is loosely based on M.R. James’s 1911 short story, Casting the Runes–a story about a warlock who sics a demon on his enemies by secretly passing them a slip of paper with a runic curse on it. The only way his victims can escape a horrible fate is by giving the runes back to him without him knowing it, so that the curse rebounds back on the caster. Although the plot and characters are altered from those in James’s story, this version is generally considered one of the best …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Now on sale: Storylandia 19, Who Killed Toby Glovins?

By Ginger Mayerson

Where to buy: online store; also Amazon (eligible for free shipping); and Kindle.

Sample pages

Where to buy: online store; also Amazon (eligible for free shipping); and Kindle.

Who Killed Toby Glovins?
Kathryn L. Ramage
ISBN: 978-1-942007-10-4

Freddie Babington has solved two mysteries. When he travels to Norfolk in the autumn of 1923 to attend the wedding of Amelia Marsh and Evelyn Tollarhithe, he doesn’t anticipate a third murder investigation. Then, on the evening before the wedding, a friend of the groom is found stabbed under circumstances …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

DVD Review: The Night Strangler

Murder in Pioneer Square area

By Kathryn L Ramage

Both this movie and The Night Stalker are on the same DVD. I was originally planning to do both as one review, then cut it into two pieces at the last minute.

After the enormous success of The Night Stalker, a sequel was inevitable. This second movie aired on ABC in 1973, about a year after the first. The plot follows the same general outline as its predecessor: newshound Carl Kolchak investigates the bizarre murders of a number of women and discovers that the killer is a man with supernatural powers, but Carl …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

DVD Review: The Night Stalker

Second murder

By Kathryn L Ramage

Now that I’m finished with Dark Shadows, I’ve decided to go on to another short-lived but influential series that began life as a Dan Curtis production and the movie that started it off.

The Night Stalker, screenplay by Richard Matheson, aired on ABC in 1972. According to the interview with Dan Curtis on this DVD, it was a huge success, hitting the highest ratings for any made-for-TV movie up that point. Different from Curtis’s previous work with its gothic settings and trappings, this was a thoroughly modern and cynical horror movie that let …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

CD Review: Dreams in the Witch House

Dreams in the Witch House scrapbook

By Kathryn L Ramage

Brown Jenkin has always creeped me out more than any of the betentacled, rugose, crinoid, or even squamose eldritch monstrosities that feature in Lovecraft’s other stories. It’s not Brown Jenkin’s rattiness that disturbs me, but his little human face and tiny human hands and feet, and his nasty way of chittering. Not to mention the gruesome death of the protagonist at the end of this story.

The first time I played this CD, it was during an evening hour with the light slowly fading as the sun went down. The Calico Horrors Part 2 and …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

DVD Review: The Dunwich Horror

Wilbur Whately's idea of a date

By Kathryn L Ramage

In some ways, this is a rather silly film as well as a loose adaptation of the original short story, but I can’t be too hard on it. It was, after all, my childhood introduction to the works of H.P. Lovecraft; if I hadn’t watched this movie and noted that it had some unusual elements that I hadn’t seen in other horror movies, and then seen the same title on the spine of a library book a few years later, who knows where I’d be today?

This was on television more than once in the …read more

Source:: WapshottOrg

      

Storylandia 15 print review

“Storylandia is the title of ‘The Wapshott Journal of Fiction,’ published by Wapshott Press. The Spring 2015 issue, Storylandia #15 (Wapshott Press pb, 142pp, $7.60), is dedicated to the work of Julie Travis, a writer who will be familiar to older readers from the early days of our predecessor The Third Alternative and possibly from other places as well. It contains five stories, all of them previously unpublished, and which, though the writer admits a preference for the term ‘slipstream,’ have about them much that should appeal to horror genre purists.”
Black Static #53, only available in print.

Click here …read more

Source:: Storylandia

      

Pasadena Oaks, by Jennifer Bentson

Where to buy: Pasadena Oaks, by Jennifer Bentson


Sample pages

Where to buy: Pasadena Oaks, by Jennifer Bentson

Pasadena Oaks: Pasadena is a pioneer in tree protection and community arts. This book blends the two forces together and shares the community stories about the significant oaks of Pasadena. Learn about the oaks still growing in the middle of the street where citizens have protected them from execution. Like John Muir who first came to Pasadena, learn about the Engelmann Oak or Pasadena Oak as it is often called. The artwork of Jennifer Bentson is full of the splendor of the limbs and settings of the oaks. She like no other artist is very involved in the oak paintings and collaborated with many groups to bring this book to you.

About the author: Jennifer Bentson has an ongoing series of Oak Tree paintings. These paintings are her journey through painting and sketching the oaks of California, which she considers everyday treasures. She has used various techniques to portray the oaks. Her training in art began in college at the University of Arizona and has continued to this day. She has won many awards and has exhibited all over California, as well as in Asia and Europe. www.jenniferbentson.com

Where to buy: Pasadena Oaks, by Jennifer Bentson

Storylandia 16 now on sale

Where to buy: 10% discount code: HDCYF4CR at this online store; eligible for Free Shipping at Amazon; and Kindle.


Larger version
Sample pages

Where to buy: 10% discount code: HDCYF4CR at this online store; eligible for Free Shipping at Amazon; and Kindle.

The Abrupt Disappearance of Cousin Wilfrid

By Kathryn L. Ramage

A murder mystery set in the 1920s. This story begins shortly after Freddie Babington’s first investigation in “Death Among the Marshes.”

1

Abbotshill had never been Frederick Babington’s home, but he was as fond of it as he was the environs of Marsh Hall. This tiny village ten miles from Ipswich had once been the site of a medieval abbey, now in ruins. In these modern times, a collection of quaint cottages, a post office, and a brown-timbered tavern sat at the convergence of five country lanes on one side of a mill pond. On the other side of the pond was the old mill with its enormous wheel, more cottages, and shops around a green. The Mill Wheel Inn sat adjacent to an on-request railway platform.

Babingtons had owned the former abbey lands since the days of the Reformation and had been a prominent family in the area for centuries. Many of them still lived in the vicinity… which was where the problem began.

Where to buy: 10% discount code: HDCYF4CR at this online store; eligible for Free Shipping at Amazon; and Kindle.

Dark Shadows: The End of Angelique?

Young David Collins has finally listened to the late Dr. Lang’s recorded message regarding the connection between Barnabas and his creation, Adam: the gist of it is that if Adam dies, Barnabas will become a vampire again. Conversely, as long as Adam lives, Barnabas can’t be turned back into a vampire no matter what Angelique does to him. She has tried with her dream curse already, and failed.

Unfortunately, once David discovered the message, he went to Angelique in her guise as his stepmother Cassandra, to ask her what it meant. This gives her the key she’s been looking for.

After …read more

Source:: TheNorthlands