Welcome to Bob Freeman’s occultdetective.com

Posted in Alba Gu Brath, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on April 18, 2016 by Occult Detective

01 sigil magickBob Freeman is an artist, game designer, paranormal adventurer, and author of two book series — The Cairnwood Manor series ( Shadows Over Somerset  & Keepers of the Dead) and Tales of the Liber Monstrorum (First Born).

A lifelong student of mythology, folklore, magic, and religion, Freeman has written numerous short stories, articles, and reviews for various online and print publications and is a respected lecturer on the occult and paranormal phenomena.

He lives in rural Indiana with his wife Kim and son Connor.

In addition to occultdetective.com, Mr. Freeman can be found online on twitter and facebook.

cairnwood series

Cover 01 First Born

‘Tis the Season for Occult Detective: The Roleplaying Game

Posted in Occult Detective: The Roleplaying Game on October 19, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge



The Occult Detective RPG is going into another wave of playtesting this coming week. The gaming group I DM for, the Oak Hill RPG Club, will have their session zero next Thursday when we’ll roll characters and discuss the themes of the narrative I’m putting together.

Between now and then, Connor and I are going to sit down with the various iterations of the game and develop a new playtest document.

If all goes well and there are no major hiccups, we just might finally get that Kickstarter in 2020.

Agent Dale Cooper: Occult Detective

Posted in Media Macabre, Occult Detectives on October 18, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

The owls are not what they seem…

Been thinking a lot about occult detectives today, as I’m wont to do. I mean, when your website’s moniker is “occult detective”, well, it can never truly be very far from one’s thoughts, now can it?

SHERILYN FENN, KYLE MACLAUGHLINIf I were backed into a corner and compelled to advise someone as to what tv series to watch to satisfy their occult detective itch, I would suggest Twin Peaks with little hesitation.

How to describe Twin Peaks? There is this — An idiosyncratic FBI Agent investigates the murder of a young woman in the even more idiosyncratic town of Twin Peaks.

Of course, Twin Peaks shines brightest when David Lynch is at the helm. The first season is an amazingly compelling narrative and season two, despite disparate voices involved, works if you’re binge watching.

Season three, while a welcome (and brilliant) reprise is Lynch at his most strange, but it works on a guttural level, even if I would have preferred a different route that involved Agent Cooper throughout.

It is Cooper who is the heart of the series, ultimately, as the erstwhile occult detective (the Bookhouse Boys serve in this role as well) and I can’t help but think there are more stories to tell within that universe.

Lynch’s occult world building is surreal and dream-like, a perfect milieu for the strange and unusual. It can be difficult to navigate, especially once we’ve entered season three territory, when his cinematic universe collides with the chimeric Northwest of he and Mark Frost’s fertile imaginations.

I was drawn to Twin Peaks by its dark themes and its quirky and unusual storytelling, but in the end, it’s the characters the breathe life into the tale and the wonderfully acted performances by nearly everyone involved.

There are uncomfortable truths to discover in the world Lynch and Frost created and as much as I loved Season Three, a Fourth Season really needs to happen to give us a proper conclusion to Cooper’s journey.



My thoughts on Lost Teachings of the Runes: Northern Mysteries & the Wheel of Life by Ingrid Kincaid

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error with tags , , , , on October 17, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

I have had the pleasure (and I do mean pleasure) of reading Ingrid Kincaid’s Lost Teachings of the Runes. Before I delve into my thoughts on the book, here is Weiser Books description:

Lost Teachings of the Runes is an unexpected adventure into the hidden meanings and profound lessons held in these simple markings that are the signatures of ancient beings.

kincaid runesLost Teachings of the Runes invites the reader to journey to the realms of past and future that exist hidden beyond the horizon and beneath our feet. Using an engaging blend of stories, meditations, and ancestral knowing, author Ingrid Kincaid explores Northern Mysteries from the center of the Wheel of Life. Kincaid demonstrates ways the Wheel can be used to connect ancient wisdom with modern life, and offers tools and teachings that may be used on a daily basis to enable readers to reclaim their personal power. Lost Teachings of the Runes presents a life-affirming, death-honoring approach that returns the runes to a place of balance, to light and dark, to order and chaos, and to the roots and branches of the world tree.

kincaidKnown as the Rune Woman, Ingrid Kincaid is an author, educator and workshop facilitator with over 45 years of experience. She is a staff-carrying wise woman in the Old Norse tradition and her connection with the runes is ancestral. Ingrid teaches throughout the United States and Europe. Visit her at http://www.ingridkincaid.com.


I was quite surprised by Lost Teachings. I was expecting this to be another modern examination of the runes with that New Age slant you so often get these days, but instead a discovered a very vibrant and thoughtful poetic journey that mirrored for me how the runes are alive and a visceral part of religious experience.

I felt very connected to the author’s word, in a way that’s difficult to explain, and I think it’s because they speak on many levels, the most important being to that deeper, primordial essence that connects us to our Northern European forebearers.

There is true magic of the north within these pages. You will feel them echo in your bones. She writes, as the book closes, “Sometimes all that needs to change are the meanings we attach to the stories we tell.” Very insightful and true.

Lost Teachings of the Runes is a journey. I am reminded of the guided meditations I used to take part in back in the late 80s, when the world was still fresh to me and I had so many questions (and yet thought I had all the answers). Lost Teachings led me to that long ago place and connected it with an even greater expanse, back to my ancestors, and made me feel at peace.

These words came to me just as I needed them.

I obviously recommend this book to all seekers of knowledge and understanding. One need not be a practitioner of a northern faith to gain insight and benefit from the lessons here.

You can find Lost Teachings of the Runes: Northern Mysteries and the Wheel of Life by Ingrid Kincaid wherever books are sold, though I recommend one purchase directly from Weiser Books. The more money that finds its way into the publisher’s pocket ensures many more books from them in the future.


wolfecroweMy next book, Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum, will be available in trade paperback and ebook in just two weeks, dropping Hallowe’en, October 31, but you can preorder the kindle version right now via amazon.com.

An excerpt from Descendant, available October 31

Posted in Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 16, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

How about another excerpt from Descendant, my latest novel set to drop on Hallowe’en?


W4 Water PageThe final bell resounded, and the crush of students raced out of Converse High School and toward their buses for their journey home. Sarah Jones met up with her best friend Tracy Larson, and they climbed onboard Bus 14 for the ride across town. Sarah was chomping at the proverbial bit.

“Alright, what’d you find out? I heard that Dylan and Shaun and the others were out at the reservoir worshiping the devil on Halloween night. They sold their souls in exchange for unearthly power, but something went horribly wrong, and now they’re being killed off for trying to double cross the Prince of Darkness.”

“Whoa, slow down, and keep it to a whisper,” Tracy said, hushing her. “Really Sarah, you don’t believe any of that nonsense, do you?”

“I don’t know what to believe,” she said, her eyes darting toward the back of the bus to ensure no one was eavesdropping. “Maybe we should talk to Allen Parker. His dad writes about this sort of stuff.”

Earth 9Sarah pulled a book out of her backpack. The title was Strange Happenings in Beacon Lodge and Other True Tales of the Supernatural. Tracy took it from her, examining the lurid cover depicting an ominous building with a skeleton staring down from a third story window. The author was listed as Steven Parker, Paranormal Investigator and Occult Expert.

“We are most certainly not calling on Allen Parker or his dad,” Tracy said, handing the book back to her best friend. “Not yet anyway,” she added, reassuringly. “I’m not ready to believe our classmates are in league with Lucifer.” She laughed at the very idea of it, but something unsettling was gnawing at her gut.

“Fine, then what really happened?”

“I don’t have the foggiest, but I’m putting together the pieces. I’ve learned some things that raise more than a few red flags.  For instance, and this goes no further than us, I overheard Principal Stoner talking to Mrs. Thomas, and it seems that Jill Thompson and Chris Hunter were found dead in the pool this morning. And I’m pretty sure that creepy Gary Shirley was found in the parking lot. It’s all very hush-hush.”

“Oh my god,” Sarah said, looking about again to make sure no one was listening.

“There’s more, but I want to cross some T’s and dot some I’s before I say anything else,” Tracy said, even more hushed than before. “Tonight I’m going to get my sister to run me out to the Mississinewa, so I can have a look around Goose Creek.”

“Goose Creek? Why in the world…”

“It’s where Dylan and his friends had their little Halloween soiree,” Tracy said. “And if I’m right, I’ll get to the bottom of this mystery before night’s end.”

“If you’re not careful, it’ll be you that gets ended.”


Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum will be available in trade paperback and ebook on Samhain, October 31, but you can preorder the kindle version right now via amazon.com.


All Hallow’s Read 2019

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror on October 15, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

We’re just 16 days away from the sacred night… As I’ve said in years past, Hallowe’en is all about the masquerade, all of us behind masks, but when the masks come off, the real monsters are revealed. Or so it seems, especially these days…

And yet, 2019’s Hallowe’en season has been as magical as any from seasons past. Perhaps this one seems a tad bit busier, or maybe I’m getting older and it’s all a bit more…well, more everything.

But there is one tradition still to come that takes precedent over all others and that’s All Hallow’s Read.

“I propose that, on Hallowe’en or during the week of Hallowe’en,
we give each other scary books… Who’s with me?” — Neil Gaiman

Conceived of by Neil Gaiman in 2010, All Hallow’s Read really is the perfect way to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve. At the heart of it, Hallowe’en has always been about the stories… be they told around a campfire or read from an overstuffed chair. Poe. Lovecraft. Howard. Machen. Blackwood… and so many more.

It’s become a tradition very important to me and I hope you embrace it too.

Here’s my “Pumpkin King” poster for this year:


Ghosts and Gunpowder

Posted in Liber et Audax, Magick by Trial & Error on October 14, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

I was largely away from the internet over the weekend, so let’s catch up.

SATURDAY, Oct 12: The Nativity of the Beast

Spent the morning and early afternoon with Kim & Conn, then set out to set up for the Converse Historical Society’s Haunted History event.

ghosttourThere was a decent turnout for our second annual gathering, and the film, being a collection of historical footage from 1937-1985 on loan from the Converse Public Library, was a huge success.

Of course, the highlight for me is always the “ghost tour” of the old building…

I hosted four outings, with the first two being completely uneventful, although the third showed a spattering of activity including two doors being opened by unseen spirits and an obvious presence that seemed to follow the group around, even lingering with us on the ground floor.

bobtourThe fourth was filled with all manner of proverbial ‘bumps in the night‘. The most inexplicable phenomena related to mimicry. Members of ISPI who were visiting reported they stopped attempting to collect EVP because other guests (including myself) were being too loud speaking downstairs. The thing is, we attempted to recreate the experience, and despite raising their voices, no one could be heard from the floors above.

Just prior to them reporting this incident, those downstairs had clearly heard the group upstairs descending and paused their conversation anticipating their arrival. However, they never materialized, at least not until several minutes later. They assured the downstairs group that no aborted attempt to come down was attempted.

All in all, the entire event was an amazing success and CHS looks forward to hosting it again next year.

SUNDAY, Oct 13: Gunpowder and Fry Bread

Kim, Connor, and I spent the morning along the banks of the Mississinewa River for Mississinewa 1812,  the largest War of 1812 living history museum in the US. Sponsored by the Mississinewa Battlefield Society, it is a historical commemoration of the Battle of Mississinewa fought on December 17-18, 1812.

Here’s a video from 2014 to give you an idea —

The food was great, we had an interesting conversation with one of reenactors, and it’s always a thrill to explore all the wares being peddled by the vendors.


Afterward, we came home and finally decorated the house for Hallowe’en, then Connor and I swung an axe for a couple of hours to remove large portions of our ailing willow tree before finally calling it a day. Kim had made lasagna, and after a terrific meal, we collapsed in front of the television and continued our binge watching of Medium on Prime.

Monday, Oct 14: Footsteps and Hammerfalls?

So, what’s on the agenda today? I’ve the day job to address and some review reading to get in (once I get my paperwork squared), then, if the gods are willing and the creek don’t rise, the family and I will take a short hike through a local forest and then get some much needed work done on the pallet shack, which is dangerously close to being finished.

What’s coming up on our 31 Day Challenge?

Book reviews of Kincaid’s Lost Teachings of the Runes, Weber’s The Morrigan, and Casas’ Divination Conjure Style; a report on the Logansport Civic Players’ performance of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow; recaps of our Occult Detective RPG playtesting; lots on the release of my novel Descendant; some exciting news regarding the First Born audiobook release; and much more.

17 days till All Hallow’s Eve!

Who’s up for some Haunted History?

Posted in Liber et Audax on October 11, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

The Converse Historical Society is hosting its 2nd Annual Haunted History event this weekend, October 12, from 5-8 at the Eastern Woodland Carvers Club.

We’ll be showing off our latest acquisitions and presenting rare video footage captured throughout the history of the town. You’ll also have the opportunity to be led on a ‘ghost tour’ of the building by yours truly as I share with you the rich and storied legends of one of Converse’s most interesting landmarks.

Admission is FREE!



I unfortunately had to cancel my appearance at Para-Unity next weekend, but they still have plenty of exciting guests. If you’re out and about on Saturday, October 19th, you should swing by and support our local ghost hunters at the Riverview Event Center (421 W Canal St in Peru, IN) from 5– 8pm.


In case you missed it, I’m featured this month over at Horror Delve. I got to sit down with the talented Matt Cowen and answer 13 Questions. It was a great time and more than worth a look.

DescendantCoverYou might also check out my interview on The Star Chamber from a couple of weeks back. I had the opportunity to join Stephen, Holly, and Daniel for a deep dive into my shadowy past. And as an added bonus, Steven Shrewsbury drops in for a chat as well.

I have a blog tour coming up in November. If you’d like to open your corner of the internet up to me, I am available. You can sign up here for Bob Freeman’s Descendant Blog Tour.


And lest we forget why we’re all here, Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum will be available in trade paperback and ebook on Samhain, October 31, but you can preorder the kindle version right now via amazon.com.

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