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…

View original post

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


Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on March 11, 2017 by Occult Detective


“The whole secret may be summarized in these four words:
“Inflame thyself in praying.”

Happy Anniversary, Buffy

Posted in Media Macabre, Occult Detectives on March 10, 2017 by Occult Detective


Has it really been 20 years since Buffy the Vampire Slayer debuted on the WB?

How an unsuccessful early 90s movie became a smash-hit late 90s television series is some sort of esoteric alchemy that can not rightly be explained. Against all odds, Buffy conquered the small screen with a largely unknown cast spouting witty, irreverent, and sardonic dialogue.

The Scooby Gang, as they were so aptly called, were not us… they were who most of us wished we were.

Buffy was, without question, ground breaking television and, arguably, one of the finest modern depictions of the occult detective genre.


Fedoras off to Joss Whedon and the entire cast, crew, writers, and directors that helped turn Buffy into something more than just a tv show. Does it hold up after 20 years? Yeah, mostly. Oh, there are a few chinks in the armor, here and there, but the heart remains, even if there is a stake plunged into it.

First Born

Posted in Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice with tags , , , , , on March 9, 2017 by Occult Detective

Cover 01 First Born

Mark July 14th on your calendars. That’s right, at long last, I have a release date for my occult detective collection forthcoming from Seventh Star Press — First Born: Tales of the Liber Monstrorum.

For review requests or press inquiries, you can contact my publisher via ccjames (at) seventhstarpress (dot) com or email me direct through my freeman (at) occultdetective (dot) com address.

You can also sign up for the Seventh Star Press Read to Review Program

ssp 3.

The Occult Detective’s #LastWrites with… Jim McLeod

Posted in Last Writes with... on March 6, 2017 by Occult Detective



Welcome to the nineteenth 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.

jimToday’s guest is none other than Jim Mcleod, who, along with being the first person born on Christmas Day in 1971 in the whole of the UK, a championship winning rugby captain, and a Scottish and British kickboxing champion, just so happens to be the founder and driving force behind the UK’s largest independent website dedicated to the world of horror — Ginger Nuts of Horror.



At the risk of sounding like a cliched kilt wearing Scotsman, it would have to Haggis neeps and tatties, and more precisely the haggis that my Nan used to make. I have fond memories of my helping my Nan make the haggis and the smell associated with grinding up sheep hearts and lungs and mixing them with her special blends of herbs and spice and oatmeal is one that brings make deep and happy memories.

Many people think that all haggis tastes the same, but haggis like a good whisky has a unique taste and you a can instantly tell if the haggis is a good one made with love over a cheap mass produced one.

Haggis for me just embodies the Scottish spirit, rough and ready, full of flavour and packing a hefty punch. Like us it’s a social thing, it’s meant for sharing with friends, and family. When you eat haggis, it gives you connection to your fellow countrymen who came before you. It can be a real spiritual experience.


At first, I thought this question would be a hard one to answer, but as soon as I thought about it, I realised that it could only ever be Ray Bradbury’s “The Halloween Tree.”

Bradbury is a master storyteller; his lyrical prose is one of the most evocative voices ever committed to paper, and “The Halloween Tree” for me is the most evocative. I love Halloween, and this book is the perfect example of the spirit of Halloween, but more importantly it is one of the best books about friendship and doing the right thing.

The bond between the boys and their love of Pip, always brings a tear to my eye. The scene where Moundshroud tells them about the deal they will have to do to save Pip is one of the most heartwarming, yet chilling scenes ever written.

And even though Pip doesn’t really feature in the book, he is such a wonderful character, so much so that i tried to bring up my children to be like him. I must have read this book at least hundred times, I have read to, and listened to my kids read it to me numerous times and seeing the light of joy in their eyes as they read it just makes me so happy. So much so I bought half a dozen copies of it to donate to Ella’s school book drive this year.


This is a real hard one to answer, part of me wants to be all intellectual and go for for a film that has a lot of meaning, but to be honest the one film that I would want to see one last time would have to be the original Disney Jungle Book. I just love it, to me it is the perfect mix of a great story, great characters and a brilliant songs. It’s the sort of film that cannot help but lift my spirits.


I grew up in Britain at the tail end of the punk movement and missed out on it by a few years. The two tone and Ska revival was my first musical movement. It was a weird time in Britain, the BNP was in full swing and the country was a dark place both socially and politically. However growing up in St Andrews meant that you were to a certain degree sheltered from the worse of it.

Politics and social relevance was something just just didn’t appear on a thirteen year old’s brain. Until the music of groups like The Special, The Selector and Madness started worming their way into your brain. These groups made you think, made you look at your sheltered life in a totally different way. I certainly wouldn’t be the person I am today without the influence of these groups on my young mind. For the last song it would have to The Specials’ Ghost Town, a haunting and brutal look at the state of my country in this dark time. Even now almost 40 years since it first hit the airwaves it still has the power to chill me to the bone.


That’s and easy one to answer, it would have to be my Dad. And the first thing I would say to him be “I know you loved me, and I love you to”. Like many people I had father who ran his own business, he was a man who worked to provide for his family, a man who worked himself into an early grave. I had a strange relationship with him, because I never really saw much of him I never fully connected with him, and it is only now as a father myself that I fully appreciate just how much he loved us and how much he did for us. He may not have always been there, but he always cared. He was good man, I just wish I had more time to appreciate just how good a man he was.

For more on Jim, follow him on facebook and twitter, and be sure to visit the Ginger Nuts of Horror website.

%d bloggers like this: