Archive for March, 2017

The Occult Detective’s #LastWrites with… Amanda DeWees

Posted in Last Writes with... on March 27, 2017 by Occult Detective


Welcome to the twenty-first installment of LAST WRITES.

The premise is simple. My guests face their final rest, but before Death claims them they are granted a few earthly pleasures, the memories of which will travel with them into the great unknown.

adeweesToday’s guest is Amanda DeWees. Amanda wrote her doctoral dissertation on 19th-century British vampire literature—the perfect training, although she didn’t know it at the time, for writing Victorian gothic romance novels.Am ong these are With This Curse, which won the 2015 Daphne du Maurier Award in historical suspense/mystery. With her latest release, the novella As Vital as Blood, she returns to her vampiric roots.

Visit her website,, to learn more about Amanda and her books.


Every birthday for as long as I can remember I’ve requested my mom’s special “Amazon” homemade spaghetti sauce and meatballs from a family recipe. (One of my uncles claims that the recipe was given to us long ago by a woman whose nickname was The Amazon, but at this point the recipe has been in the family for so long that I think we can claim it.) It’s a meal that is both festive and comforting to me, and it captures the feeling of a warm familial embrace. I would choose that for my last meal.


Oh, this is a tough decision. Really, really tough. But Robin McKinley’s Beauty, her 1978 novelization of the “Beauty and the Beast” fairy tale, holds a very special place in my heart. It was a tremendous influence on me as a writer and remains one of my favorite comfort reads. I learned so much about characterization, world building, and creating a compelling love story from this book. I would definitely want to revisit it one last time, in part because the heroine is so lovable she feels like a real-life friend, and I would want to say goodbye to her.


I usually gravitate toward movies with more story to them, but there’s something about Sally Potter’s 1992 adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s novel Orlando, starring Tilda Swinton, that keeps me coming back to it. It’s a visual feast with an almost hypnotic quality, and it ends with Bronski Beat’s Jimmy Somerville as a gold-lamé-clad angel singing in the sky. What better way to usher in the afterlife?


I’ve been listening to Kate Bush a lot lately, so I’m very tempted to choose “Moments of Pleasure,” in which she remembers friends she has lost. It’s a beautiful and uplifting testament to the power of memory to keep our loved ones alive in thought after they’ve died, and that would be a comforting sentiment to have in mind during my last moments. But for a song judged purely on how much happiness it brings me, I might instead have to go with the Flying Pickets’ 1984 cover of Yaz’s “Only You,” surely one of the most beautiful a capella pop performances ever. All those cascading notes surrounding a sweetly yearning lyric are just too lovely not to listen to one last time…and I would totally sing along.


This may sound like the witterings of an overly romantic girl who has watched Somewhere in Time too many times—all of which may well be true—but it’s been at the back of my mind for many years. A friend used to tell me about a relative of hers, a brilliant young man who died tragically and too soon, and she always talked about how much he and I would have had in common had he lived. For some reason the fancy captured me that he and I might have been meant for each other. I’ve never forgotten this man I never met, and it would be lovely to be greeted by him on the other side.

Or Christopher Reeve. Because between Superman and Somewhere in Time, his would be a welcoming face indeed.


We’re getting closer…

Posted in Occult Detective: The Roleplaying Game on March 23, 2017 by Occult Detective


The box art for Occult Detective: The Roleplaying Game™

World Poetry Day 2017

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on March 21, 2017 by Occult Detective



in quiet desperation
a looming shadow grows
spreading like a cancer
from the mouth of
dead man’s road

it climbs across the pavement
consumes a dying sun
and whispers in the ear
of the girl who
should’ve won

but the secret was pervasive
and the mystery was sincere
clinging to the answer
to the question
she had feared

she rides the silent thunder
alight upon the wind
and with a gentle hand
she bathes once more
in sin

she sings of ancient wonders
another story spins
the beast has tipped its hand
she bathes once more
in sin

—BF 3/21/17

Pick a film for every year you’ve been alive?

Posted in Media Macabre on March 21, 2017 by Occult Detective

I’ve decided to take the “Pick a film for every year you’ve been alive” Challenge and to be honest, this was a lot tougher than I thought it would be. Some years were near impossible to narrow down to a single film, especially in the 80s.


Anyway, off we go, 50 years of moviedom.

1966 — Dracula, Prince of Darkness
1967 — You Only Live Twice
1968 — The Devil Rides Out
1969 — Legend of the Witches
1970 —  The Dunwich Horror
1971 — The Omega Man
1972 — The Night Stalker
1973 — The Exorcist
1974 — Chinatown
1975 — Jaws
1976 — Logan’s Run
1977 — Star Wars
1978 — Halloween
1979 — Alien
1980 — Somewhere in Time
1981 — Raiders of the Lost Ark
1982 — Blade Runner
1983 — Eddie and the Cruisers
1984 — Dune
1985 — Remo Williams: The Legend Begins
1986 — Highlander
1987 — Angel Heart
1988 — Alien Nation
1989 — Road House
1990 — The Exorcist III
1991 — The Fisher King
1992 — The Last of the Mohicans
1993 — Tombstone
1994 — The Crow
1995 — Seven
1996 — From Dusk till Dawn
1997 — The Devil’s Advocate
1998 — Saving Private Ryan
1999 — The 13th Warrior
2000 — Unbreakable
2001 — The Others
2002 — Bubba Ho-Tep
2003 — The Last Samurai
2004 — Hellboy
2005 — Serenity
2006 — The Prestige
2007 — 1408
2008 — The Spiderwick Chronicles
2009 — Harry Potter & the Half-Blood Prince
2010 — Shutter Island
2011 — Thor
2012 — Prometheus
2013 — Odd Thomas
2014 — Edge of Tomorrow
2015 — The Martian
2016 — Doctor Strange

The Occult Detective’s #LastWrites with… Michael West

Posted in Last Writes with... on March 20, 2017 by Occult Detective


Welcome to the twentieth installment of LAST WRITES.

The premise is simple. My guests face their final rest, but before Death claims them they are granted a few earthly pleasures, the memories of which will travel with them into the great unknown.

mwestToday’s guest is Michael West, author of Cinema of Shadows, Spook House, The Wide Game, Skull Full of Kisses, and the critically-acclaimed Legacy of the Gods series.

A graduate of Indiana University, West earned a degree in Telecommunications and Film Theory, and since that time, he has written a multitude of short stories, articles, and reviews for various on-line and print publications.

He lives and works in the Indianapolis area with his wife, their two children, their turtle, Gamera, and their dog, King Seesar.



Seafood enchiladas. My two favorite types of food are seafood and Mexican food, so combining them would be the way to go.


Stephen King’s The Stand. This and ‘Salem’s Lot are my two favorite books of all time. I re-read them every few years, and it always seems like I find something new with each reading. I would go with The Stand because it’s a longer work, and it might give me a bit more time to live. LOL


ALIENS. I have been a fan of the Xenomorph for nearly my entire life, and this is my all-time favorite film. Flawlessly combines Action, Horror, and Sci-fi. Character, plotting, and effects… A perfect film.


Either Hotel California by The Eagles or Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. These are two of the greatest songs ever written, and I really couldn’t go wrong with either choice.


This is a tough one. There are so many people who have left this world that I would love to meet, everyone from George Washington to Prince, but I think I would like to sit down and have a drink with Edgar Allan Poe. I think, as a Horror writer, that would be a great way to start eternity.

For more information on Michael, visit his official homepage, Amazon Author Page, or follow on twitter and facebook.

The Occult Detective RPG Major Arcana

Posted in Archive on March 14, 2017 by Occult Detective

Dice Upon A Time

Major Arcana

A little something for the Occult Detective RPG…

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Magick Writes

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on March 13, 2017 by Occult Detective

No #LastWrites today. Had a minor snafu with my file upload, but never fear, we’ll be back next Monday for sure with an all new graveside guest — Michael West.

In the meantime, enjoy this spot of artwork I dreamed up over the weekend. I’m noodling on producing a full color tarot deck and fancy this might be the look I’m after.

High Priestess

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