Archive for the Occult Detectives Category

My Review of The Periodic Table of Paranormal Elements

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error, Occult Detectives on March 21, 2018 by Occult Detective

My friend Jill Pingleton reached out to me last night to share the new iOS app she and her husband Roger have developed to aid in categorizing paranormal phenomenon. — The Periodic Table of Paranormal Elements.

I have known Jill and Roger for a number of years and have had the pleasure to investigate with both on several occasions. I found them to be studious and dedicated researchers and got to see firsthand a number of innovative experiments conducted using equipment designed by Roger and his colleagues. One in particular that stood out involved dry ice and lasers that was absolutely brilliant.

They’ve always had an eye for utilizing technology to enhance one’s paranormal investigations and experience, and I find their latest project — The Periodic Table of Paranormal Elements — to be their best foot forward to date.

It’s innovative, useful as hell, and really does a thorough job of classifying the various types of phenomena one might experience.


The Table Layout

The table is divided into five distinct categories of anomalous phenomenon, each represented by a color.

paranormal elements

Visual Elements are red. Auditory Elements are orange. Physiological Elements are yellow. Environmental Elements are green. Super Patterns are purple.

It’s all there. I picked my brain to come up with something not covered, but you can find them all there in these 103 classifications. Each element is clickable, with a useful explanation of what the phenomena is and with examples of types of phenomena reported.

Admittedly, some of these definitions could be refined and expanded upon, but it’s a work in progress and a terrific start.

Based on their categorization, in my 35 years as a paranormal adventurer (44 if you want to go all the way back to my first encounter), I have experienced 54 elements of paranormal phenomena, though I am tempted to say 55. Here’s my score card —

my paranormal elements

You’ll see 54 white circles representing those things I’ve experienced. The one in yellow, Wn, represents Portal/Window and is defined as “An opening or view into what appears to be a parallel universe, time or dimension. Can be visible or invisible (only known to intuitive individuals). Often a place where paranormal phenomena occur is attributed to portal activity. Portals have been seen as physical doors, near or touching the ground. Sometimes visible in the sky, during which time a different sky can be seen through the portal. May be related to Divergent Reality or Glitch In The Matrix.

I would add preternatural vortices and  temporal nexuses to this description. I have been investigating one particular location for twelve years now, and while I have long suspected it to be one or the other, the proof of such has alluded me. I know it to be true, deep down in my gut, but I have yet to see beyond the veil and glimpse the other side.


The Periodic Table of Paranormal Elements is an invaluable tool and I look forward to seeing how it evolves in the coming months and years. For one, I’d really like to see them add a “realtime” investigation log feature, allowing the user to be able to click and add each element as they occur, noting time, place, temp, etc.

The app is only .99¢ via the Apple App Store. It is a dollar well spent, believe me.


Bob Freeman’s “First Born” Blog Tour

Posted in Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice with tags , , , , on March 12, 2018 by Occult Detective




I’ll be making the rounds all this week, promoting my occult detective collection, First Born, which is the opening chapter in my Liber Monstrorum Chronicles. As my appearances go live, I will update the blog roll accordingly.

Monday 3/12
Greg Mitchell’s The Coming Evil

Tuesday 3/13

Wednesday 3/14
Josh Reynold’s Hunting Monsters
Ginger Nuts of Horror’s “We’ve Got It Covered”

Thursday 3/15
Morgan Sylvia’s Through the Labyrinth

Friday 3/16
Sheila’s Guests and Reviews

Saturday 3/17
I Smell Sheep

Sunday 3/18
Jacob Floyd’s Ghosts and Monsters

Tuesday 3/20
Book in the Bag

Robert E. Howard, Solomon Kane, & Mythic Games

Posted in Dice Upon A Time, Occult Detectives, Sword & Sorcery with tags , , , on February 22, 2018 by Occult Detective

I posted a video for Oak Hill RPG Club that certainly should be an interest to my fellow occult detective aficionados. In it I talk briefly about my love for Robert E. Howard, Solomon Kane, and Mythic Games’ announcement that they’re producing a boardgame around Howard’s second most famous character.

Take a look. And if you dig games, like and subscribe. We’d appreciate it.

What’s Your Name? Who’s Your Daddy? #ConstantineOnLegends

Posted in Media Macabre, Occult Detectives with tags on February 13, 2018 by Occult Detective


The CW’s version of John Constantine, played convincingly by Matt Ryan, made an appearance on Legends of Tomorrow last night in an episode titled Daddy Darhkest.

Let’s just get this out of the way: Legends of Tomorrow is not a good show, by any stretch. In fact, I’m sorry to say, the entire Arrowverse has become unbearable to me. I abandoned Legends fairly quickly into its sophomore season, and it wasn’t long before I jettisoned the Flash as well. I stuck it out with Arrow the longest, but I dropped it as well in the end. They all suffer the same malady, I’m afraid: bad, clichéd writing and lifeless acting.


All it took for me to tune back in was everyone’s favorite chain-smoking streetwise exorcist.

The story was solid enough: Damian Darhk’s daughter is in a mental institution (nice nod to John’s visual inspiration there, Sumner Asylum, calling back to one Gordon Sumner, aka Sting) and possessed by the demon Mallus (voiced by the always brilliant John Noble). When Mallus name-drops Sara Lance, John calls on the crew of the Waverider and off we go.


There were some good visual effects, some nice graphic design with the inscribed Solomon Circle, and the like. Matt Ryan has got the charm to pull off Constantine well enough and I enjoyed both his flirtation with Citizen Cold and his hook-up with the equally sexually fluid White Canary, especially with the Zombies’ Time of the Season for accompaniment.


This episode, much as Matt Ryan’s Arrow guest spot did, once again underscores the missed opportunity to breathe new life into a Constantine television series. I was a fan of the short lived FOX effort, even though I felt the premise was a bit daft and setting all wrong. It still worked because it had a solid lead and great visuals.

300The fact of the matter is, DC has mismanaged Constantine as a character for a while now, pretty much since the original series took a bow with its 300th issue. Subsequent comics have been poor reflections of what made Constantine innovative and brilliant.

The TV version comes bloody close, but I still clamour for a more steady dose of Johnny Con-Job. With an animated series on the horizon from CWSeed, perhaps we’ll get something to scratch that devilish itch.

More Matt Ryan is never a bad thing, even if its just his voice carrying the load.


The 8th Annual Occult Detective Awards

Posted in Occult Detective Awards, Occult Detectives on January 4, 2018 by Occult Detective

2010 — A Gathering of Crows by Brian Keene
2011 — Hard Spell by Justin Gustainis
2012 — Tortured Spirits (Jake Helman Files) by Gregory Lamberson
2013 — Love is the Law by Nick Mamatas
2014 — The Last of the Albatwitches by Brian Keene
2015 — Human Monsters (Jake Helman Files) by Gregory Lamberson
2016 — The Secret History of Twin Peaks by Mark Frost
2017 — HeX-Rated by Jason Ridler

Read My Review of HeX-Rated


2010 — Ghosts Templar (Jason Dark: Ghost Hunter) by Guido Henkel
2011 — The Hellfire Club by William Meikle
2012 — Gathered Dust by W.H. Pugmire
2013 — In the Dark and Quiet by Joshua Reynolds
2014 — Bedlam in Yellow by William Meikle
2015 — Seeking Whom He May Devour by Joshua Reynolds
2016 — The Watcher at the Gate by William Meikle
2017 — When Soft Voices Die by Amanda DeWees

Read My Last Writes with Amanda DeWees


2010 — The Black Spiral: Twisted Tales of Terror, edited by Richard D. Weber
2011 — House of Fear, edited by Jonathon Oliver
2012 — A Cat of Nine Tales, edited by Tracy DeVore and Thaddeus Sexton
2013 — Weird Detectives, edited by Paula Guran
2014 — The Weiser Book of Horror and the Occult, edited by Lon Milo DuQuette
2015 — A Grimoire of Eldritch Inquests, edited by Joshua Reynolds & Miles Boothe
2016 — The Weiser Book of the Fantastic and Forgotten, edited by Judika Illes
2017 — The Weiser Book of Occult Detectives, edited by Judika Illes

Read My Review of The Weiser Book of
Occult Detectives


2010 — Edict Zero-FIS by Slipgate Nine Entertainment
2011 — Edict Zero-FIS by Slipgate Nine Entertainment
2012 — Operation Victor by Big Finish
2013 — Occult of Personality with Greg Kaminsky
2014 — Rune Soup with Gordon White
2015 — Rune Soup with Gordon White
2016 — The Horror Show with Brian Keene
2017 — Rune Soup with Gordon White


2010 — John Constantine: Hellblazer
2011 — League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century – 1969
2012 — League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century – 2009
2013 — Drumhellar
2014 — The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
2015 — Providence
2016 — Providence
2017 — Black Magick


2010 — Inception
2011 — Drive Angry
2012 — Solomon Kane
2013 — Odd Thomas
2014 — Deliver Us From Evil
2015 — Bone Tomahawk
2016 — Dr. Strange
2017 — A Dark Song

Read My Thoughts on A Dark Song

a dark song

2010 — Supernatural
2011 — Fringe
2012 — 666 Park Avenue
2013 — Hannibal
2014 — True Detective
2015 — Constantine
2016 — The X-Files: Season 10
2017 — Lucifer


2010 — Destination Truth
2011 — Brad Meltzer’s Decoded
2012 — Deals from the Dark Side
2013 — Haunted Highway
2014 — The Curse of Oak Island
2015 — Expedition Unknown
2016 — The Curse of Oak Island
2017 — Expedition Unknown


2010 — Perdurabo, Revised & Expanded Edition: The Life of Aleister Crowley by Richard Kaczynski, PhD
2011 — Destination Truth: Memoirs of a Monster Hunter by Josh Gates
2012 — In the Center of the Fire: A Memoir of the Occult by James Wasserman
2013 — The Best of the Equinox, vol 2: Dramatic Calls by Aleister Crowley & Lon Milo DuQuette
2014 — Aleister Crowley: Magick, Rock and Roll, and the Wickedest Man in the World by Gary Lachman
2015 — H.P. Lovecraft & the Black Magickal Tradition by John L. Steadman
2016 — The English Magic Tarot by Rex Van Ryn, Steve Dooley, & Andy Letcher
2017 — Getting Higher: The Manual of Psychedelic Ceremony by Julian Vayne

Read My Review of Getting Higher


2010 — Brian Keene
2011 — William Meikle
2012 — Gregory Lamberson
2013 — Tim Prasil
2014 — John Constantine
2015 — Miles Boothe
2016 — Sam Gafford, John Linwood Grant, Travis Neisler, and Dave Brzeski
2017 — Joshua Reynolds

Read My Last Writes with Josh Reynolds



Horror for the Holidays

Posted in Horror, Occult Detectives, Sword & Sorcery, Writing in Theory & Practice on November 24, 2017 by Occult Detective

Have you heard of jólabókaflóð? You must have, because the Icelandic tradition of exchanging books on Christmas Eve and then spending the evening reading, is fast becoming a cultural phenomenon around the world.

Now that’s a tradition I can get behind.

If you’ve got loved ones who love to read, and prefer something a little bit more — shall we say — sinister, might I suggest my offerings, published by Seventh Star Press.


Available on Shadows Over Somerset  & Keepers of the Dead

firstborn ad

Available on First Born

Nothing says Yuletide quite like stories about occult detectives, werewolves, witches, vampires, and immortal swordsmen. Add a sprinkling of Norse Gods into the equation and you’ve got yourself one helluva Christmas Party.


Hallowe’en is over, but Samhain remains.

Posted in Horror, Liber et Audax, Magick by Trial & Error, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on November 1, 2017 by Occult Detective


Another Hallowe’en has passed. We had a great night. We visited my parents at the Woodcarvers Building and watched some of the kids parade through in their costumes, then headed back home for a bonfire and camp supper.

We ended the evening with some para-entertainment, courtesy of Rob Lowe, and an episode of Lucifer.

All in all, a fine Hallowe’en that came and went too fast. Luckily, we’re still in the throes of Samhain, which will culminate this coming weekend with November’s Frost Moon.



It being November 1st, I can’t let the day pass without acknowledging the birthday of Landon Connors.

Yes, I know, he’s a fictional character, but in truth he’s much more than that. Giving him a birthdate grounded him for me. Knowing how old he was in, say, 1986, helps me make him a living and breathing person.

He was ten, by the way.

Happy 41st Birthday, Landon Connors. I hope there are many more to come…



If you were one of those who purchased the latest issue of Occult Detective Quarterly and found my Walter Davies tale, “Birds of a Feather”, truncated, fear not. The good folks at ODQ have uploaded the missing words in an Erratum, with future editions having the corrected prose.


That’s all for now… I’ve writing to attend to.

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