Like the STRANGER THINGS Score? Check Out S U R V I V E

ouos14xohz62qr1dydb4Like everyone else on the planet who is remotely interested in horror, I recently devoured the eight episode masterpiece that was Stranger Things. As someone who grew up in the ’80s, this series has earned a very special place in my heart. And I could write for days about the loving homages to King, Carpenter, Koontz, Barker and many other horror masters that the Duffer Brothers wove into the show. But that’s not what I’m here to write about today.

See, there are few things that I love even more than horror, but one of them is music. There are places where my love of both horror and music overlap, and in the center of that Venn diagram are two words: John Carpenter. From The Thing to Halloween to They Live and more, John Carpenter’s synth-infused scores are etched into my brain forever.

So it should come as no surprise that the first time I heard the theme for Stranger Things, I was in love. And I immediately needed to know who was responsible for it, and the rest of the score that elevated the show to legendary status.

Michael Stein and Kyle Dixon are one half of the band S U R V I V E, are they’re the dynamic duo behind the music of Stranger Things. Over on the S U R V I V E Bandcamp page you can check out and purchase their current catalog of music, which you will absolutely adore if you dug any of the stuff on Stranger Things. They have a new album coming out on September 30th, and I will be grabbing that the day it arrives. You can also check out a bunch of their stuff on SoundCloud.

Most of my writing is done to horror movie soundtracks, and just about everything from S U R V I V E will immediately make it into the regular rotation. It was also announced that there will be a Stranger Things soundtrack release, though I’m less interested in the licensed tracks the show used (although they were universally great).

So, in summary–go support S U R V I V E, because Stranger Things wouldn’t have been have as good without Stein and Dixon’s wonderful score. Bravo, gentlemen. Bravo.

I am an Adult and So Can You: 13 Things That Happened This Week

There’s something happening here and I’m scared.

Over the past seven days at least 13 things have happened which lead me to believe my adulting game may be leveling up.

13. I took the first step towards a making a doctor’s appointment which I have been avoiding for about a decade.fade-away

12. I outlined the next ten posts for my blog.post-54191-waldorf-and-statler-typing-dow-1DiI
11. I applied to be a local chapter leader for a non-fiction writing organization.tumblr_n5jgqgyjlz1tq3cv7o2_500


10. I researched information for the marketing section of my non-fiction book proposal.
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9. I started a load of laundry AND switched it to the dryer AND started the dryer.brick-in-washing-machine-o

 

8. I accepted a promotion at work and, except for this very sentence, did not brag when I was informed the position was designed with me in mind.high fiving a million angels

 

7. I wrote the text of this post before assigning GIFs to each item–though I did have an idea of what I wanted but only made mental notes which his huge for me. Usually, I get much too excited about the visual to worry about the content.giphy-1

 

6. My superior sibling solicited advice from me AND I gave it to said sibling without sarcasm.lily-s-sister-o
5. I took my work to a coffee shop AND got almost all of that work done even with distractions. yyhRB4kZRmWCIHe1AIKq_Telekenesis Prank
4. I didn’t even swear once at judgey Netflix for asking me if I was “still watching?” New Girl. Instead, I set the sleep timer for a reasonable amount of time (90 min) so it was only another 72 episodes.giphy
3. I took a break from grading RIGHT when I realized I needed it, not after.fVDH5bN
2. My mother called me (ME) for car-buying advice and I had valuable information for her. vintage-footage-1900-modelt-ford-driving-animated-gif-1
1. I made the choice to honor these 13 things because this is my last semester teaching and I want my students, readers, family, and friends to know that for all the crap and grief and doubt and jabs I give myself,  I still deserve to recognize when I punch life in the throat.
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Do you have any things?

#HorrorTwins Cover Reveal! Are You Ready for #OrchardPointe?

You know what I love? Creepy towns with secrets.

Amusement parks have always felt ominous to me. Crowds of people happily running around, blind to what’s going on around them in their joy. The rides are running–death traps if I’ve ever seen one–carnival food consumed by the bucketful, made by people peering out at the cheery park goers who don’t know anyone in that town or have any reason to care about what happens when your food is made. It’s hot, the day is coming to a close, there’s a magic in the air that could be great, or could be…. something….else. And there’s so much noise. Who’s going to hear you scream?

Sound like a good time? Excellent, have I got the book to show you!

The Horror Twins are at it again! The creepy authors who brought The Woodsview Harvester to life in the serial killer YA Horror Harrowed are now giving us a tour of Orchard Pointe, and not everyone’s going to make it out alive.

Okay. Okay. I’m reining the excitement in.

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Okay, not really.

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If you follow Jolene Haley and Brian LeTendre on twitter, you’ll know they’ve been teasing us about this book for months. I’ve been banging on the gates waiting for the next teaser they’d give us.

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And now, here we are. Are you ready for this?

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Here we go. Take my hand.

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WELCOME TO ORCHARD POINTE!

 

Orchard Pointe FOR WEB

 

ORCHARD POINTE

Every town has its secrets. This town is made of them.

It’s been ten years since Hudson James stepped foot in the small beach town of Orchard Pointe. His parents are battling through a nasty divorce and he’s forced to spend the summer in Maine with extended family. But Hudson makes the most of it. He finds kindred spirits in his cousin Marley and her oddball friend Kit, and lands a security job at the amusement park he loved as a kid.

Oceanside Amusement Park was once the centerpiece of the beachfront tourist experience. But with attendance down and the park in need of an update, Orchard Pointe’s tricentennial celebration might be the last chance to turn things around. The town brings in a performance group all the way from their sister city of Monrive, France—Madame Chambers’ Coterie of Curiosities. From sideshow to burlesque acts, Madame Chambers and her eccentric group of performers mesmerize locals and tourists alike from the moment they arrive.

When a girl disappears from the park during Hudson’s very first shift, he feels responsible. When she turns up dead, Hudson can’t forgive himself. He vows to discover the truth about what happened and the more he digs, the more he’s certain that Madame Chambers and her Coterie aren’t what they seem.

Can Hudson stop the wave of darkness that has crashed down on Orchard Pointe, or will the undertow of secrets claim another victim?

Add Orchard Pointe to Goodreads!

Available August 16th, 2016!

 

ORCHARD POINTE TEASER #1

ORCHARD POINTE TEASER #2

ORCHARD POINTE TEASER #3

ahs nan

 

Are you ready for this?

Add Orchard Pointe to Goodreads!

Make sure to add Orchard Pointe on Goodreads, and join in the fun! Use the hashtag #OrchardPointe to share your excitement on twitter, and let the Horror Twins know about your own amusement park horrors! Follow them at @SeeBrianWrite and @JoleneHaley. Let them know I say hi! They always appreciate a good creepy gif. Or so I tell myself as I pour my Horror Twins love at them.

This is also a great time to reread Harrowed if it’s been a while! (I’m assuming you’ve read this book already, because why wouldn’t you have? YA Horror. Serial Killers. If you haven’t, you can one-click on Amazon. You can thank me later. Or now. I love hearing from happy readers in the comments. Hint, hint.)

Remember: Join the book buzz using hashtag #OrchardPointe

Orchard Pointe: Coming August 16th, 2016!

Blair Witch 2016

In October of 1994, three student filmmakers disappeared in the woods near Burkittsville, Maryland while shooting a documentary.

This is the first line of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT movie trailer.

Yeah.

I remember when THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT released in 1999. Everyone, including me, believed the marketing plan of three college students who go into the woods and end up shooting footage of their hauntings and untimely deaths.

S.C.A.R.Y.

The shakey camera footage helped to solidfy this idea in the minds of the viewers. I absolutely loved this film and now…there’s a reboot!

At Comic Con, people showed up to view a trailer of THE WOODS. Again, the marketing plan for this is pure genious. As the trailer began, fans were shocked to discover that what they were watching was infact titled BLAIR WITCH. We know that all of the original characters are dead, so what could the plot of this horror be in 2016? This film follows Heather’s brother, who is looking to find out what happened to his sister.

Even though we know ahead of time that this footage is not “found”, I would venture to guess that this film will still thrill horror fans in September 2016.

Amy - Midnight Society Signatures

Happy Birthday Brian LeTendre and Kim Graff!

It’s July! Which means:

  1. You need to watch Stranger Things on Netflix, Dead of Summer is out and (amazing!) and it’s almost October. Kind of.
  2. It also means we get to celebrate two of my favorite people ever!

Happy Birthday Brian LeTendre and Kim Graff!

 

Happy Happy Birthday Brian LeTendre!!!

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Brian, you are such a wonderful, fantastic person with big dreams, a huge heart, and talent beyond my wildest dreams. For you I gift you this music video, which is one of my favorite songs of all time from one of my favorite bands of all time. I treasure this macabre music just like I treasure you. – Jolene

 

 

 

 

Happy Happy Birthday Kim Graff!!!

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Kim, you are so fun, creative, intelligent, and witty. I admire your brains and skills, and your bookish prowess. To you, I gift this music video. It’s creepy, fun, and cool, just like you are. – Jolene

 


A Very Special Message for Brian the Birthday Boy:

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Today is your special day BRIAN. It is your BIRTHDAY.

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I just want you to know how much I want you to have a happy birthday, BRIAN.

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You should party with WHOEVER you want to, BRIAN.

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But I hope you pick ME, BRIAN.

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…and I hope your cake has a delicious taste, BRIAN.

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…and the ice cream too, BRIAN.

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Happy birthday BRIAN. Love, the Davis girl

A Very Special Message for KIM the Birthday Girl:

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What an EXCITING day your birthday is. Right KIM? Much adventure. Very happiness.

 

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I hope you get everything you want on your special day, KIM.

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And that you are surrounded by happiness with no escape, KIM. No escape.

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Maybe you’ll even get a few special surprises, KIM. Would you like that, KIM?

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Maybe you’ll get a new dolly to play with. Wouldn’t you like a new dolly, KIM?

Don't forget to make a wish when you blow out your candle, KIM.

Don’t forget to make a wish when you blow out your candles, KIM.

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Happy birthday KIM. Love, the Davis girl


 

 

Brain!

Thanks for sharing your knowledge of everything 80’s and slasher! I’ve learned so much from you.

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I hope it’s chocolate, possibly evil…

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Happy birthday!

Kathy

 

Kim!

You love the dark and creepy and that is what makes you fabulous! So here’s a message from Dean just for you…

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He’s so right. You are.

And CAKE! Zombie style.

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Happy birthday!

Kathy

 


Happy Birthday Brian and Kim!!!!

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Time for a party!!

You both are amazing and I wish we could be together for your birthdays. Since we can’t, I’ve created the perfect virtual freakshow party for us all to enjoy. So, cut the clown cake and let’s hope we all survive the celebration…

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XOXO,

Amy


Kim!

Since you’re a newfound Pokemaster, I found just the pokemon for you.

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You are such a valued, incredible member of both our spooky family and the writing community. The advice you willingly give in both PW and the Querying facebook group has helped myself and many others so much. You are so appreciated and I hope you have the best day.

Brian!

Not only does your writing wow me, but your passion for the craft is awe-inspiring. Every time you talk about your writing process or your inspiration, It gives me the urge to yank open my WIP and write. It makes being your friend seriously cool. Oh, and you HANDS DOWN give the absolute best music recs of all time. I haven’t stopped writing to the PRINCE OF DARKNESS.

So to the both of you, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

<3,

Jenna


Happy birthday to two amazing members of our group. We’re so happy you’re part of this team. Check your emails for a fun surprise from all of us!

Love,

The Midnight Society Signature

 

No Sleep Til Tokyo: American Reboots of J-Horror Classics… and their sequels

Back again this month with more j-horror films to trigger latent fears of technology: video cassette tapes, cell phones, cameras, the internet… nothing is sacred. Nothing is safe. Sure, we’re accustomed to haunted houses — that’s old hat — but a possessed eyeball?!

Okay, okay… so maybe not so much a possessed eyeball, but at least an organ that let’s you see into the spirit world.

One of the most fun conventions of j-horror is that it often uses everyday objects and turns them into vessels for terror. The films in this list, excepting Godzilla, all cater to hauntings of some caliber, and all are remakes of classic j-horror films.

In some cases, they’re even more terrifying than the originals (and in some cases, even more hilariously awful.)

It’s good to keep a sense of humor about things… especially if you might end up losing sleep because of them.

Summaries are from IMDB. Enjoy. :)

The Ring (Ringu)

A journalist must investigate a mysterious videotape which seems to cause the death of anyone in a week of viewing it.

The Ring 2

Six months after the incidents involving the lethal videotape, new clues prove that there is a new evil lurking in the darkness.

The Grudge (Ju-on)

An American nurse living and working in Tokyo is exposed to a mysterious supernatural curse, one that locks a person in a powerful rage before claiming their life and spreading to another victim.

The Grudge 2

Three interwoven stories about a terrible curse. A young woman encounters a malevolent supernatural force while searching for her missing sister in Tokyo; a mean high school prank goes horribly wrong; a woman with a deadly secret moves into a Chicago apartment building.

Dark Water

A mother and daughter, still wounded from a bitter custody dispute, hole up in a run-down apartment building. Adding further drama to their plight, they are targeted by the ghost of former resident.

The Eye (Gin gwai)

A woman receives an eye transplant that allows her to see into the supernatural world.

One Missed Call (Chakushin Ari)

Several people start receiving voice-mails from their future selves – messages which include the date, time, and some of the details of their deaths.

Godzilla

The world is beset by the appearance of monstrous creatures, but one of them may be the only one who can save humanity.

 

*meowing cat*

Happy watching!

Japanese Horror in YA: The Suffering by Rin Chupeco

As I mentioned earlier in the month, it’s J-Horror (Japanese Horror) month here at the Midnight Society! Last week I posted about J-horror in young adult fiction.

My post featured the fabulous book called The Girl From The Well by Rin Chupeco and I thought it would be fun to continue with my feature! She has another amazing sequel and don’t you worry, I’m going to tell you allllllll about it.

J-Horror in YA

The Suffering by Rin Chupeco

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Breathtaking and haunting, Rin Chupeco’s second novel is a chilling companion to her debut, The Girl from the Well.

The darkness will find you.

Seventeen-year-old Tark knows what it is to be powerless. But Okiku changed that. A restless spirit who ended life as a victim and started death as an avenger, she’s groomed Tark to destroy the wicked. But when darkness pulls them deep into Aokigahara, known as Japan’s suicide forest, Okiku’s justice becomes blurred, and Tark is the one who will pay the price…

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I think that it’s fantastic that Chupeco is sharing some of the popular Japanese ghost stories with us and now, we discover a Okiku, an unfortunate servant maid story that is one of the best known Japanese ghost stories. Google it, trust me, you wont be disappointed.

Have you read The Suffering? Do you have a favorite J-Horror inspired book? Tell me in the comments below!

Jolene - Midnight Society Signatures

A Selection of J-Horror Movies for Every Horror Fan Type

J-Horror

The ever-so amazing Kira has a list of her essential J-Horror movies here for you to pick from and  I previously mentioned the movies you can find on Amazon streaming and Netflix here.

And as I mentioned before, J-Horror is my favorite horror. I think K-Horror (Korean) and C-Horror (Chinese) are really spectacular as well, but J-Horror was kinda my first and you always have special feelings for your first.

And previously, our wonderful Erica mentioned how she has trouble with gore movies, so it got me thinking–I used to hate gore too, but now I can stomach it pretty well for no real apparent reason. I suppose I’ve been desensitized to it or something.

This is from Battle Royale, a J-Horror movie, btw

This is from Battle Royale, a J-Horror movie, btw

So I wanted to make a list of J-Horror movies for every type of horror fan: the Gore fans, the slow-burners, the Psychological (aka no gore), historical/old school fans, and the occult.

For Slow-Burner Fans:

Dark Waters is for you!

This movie is a slow burner for sure. It’s about a woman who moves into a haunted apartment with her young child, and all the chaos this creates. (This is also acceptable for gore-free fans, as there’s pretty much none.)

For Psychological Horror Fans:

Pulse aka Kairo.

This one has been mentioned before on our blog, because it’s just that good. It’s a psychological thriller (also good for the gore free folks, as people disappear into shadows and don’t get eaten/torn apart) about how we should be more mindful of how technology can controls us.

For Occult Fans:

Teke Teke

Teke Teke is a legend in Japan that every region has–generally with some variation depending on the region/city/town you live in. It’s about a legless lady that can sneak up on you realllllly fast and then ding, dong, you’re done.

The Slit-Mouth Woman:

She’s like Teke Teke, another local legend–every region has a different retelling of her. Some say she wears all red, some say white.

For Historical Fans:

Tokaido Yotsuya Kaiden (aka The Ghost of Yotsuya), this is a 1959 J-Horror adaption of one of the most popular ghost stories in Japan.

Kwaidan: This is a MUST WATCH for J-horror fans. It’s a long collection of a bunch of ghost stories. It’s also generally okay for gore-free seekers. 

For Gore Fans:

Audition is for you!

Warning: Seriously though this is for people who can handle gore. It seems slow and like gore-free at first but it is NOT GORE FREE and most likely should not be watched alone. Though I watched it alone … but I was smart enough to do that during the day. Had I watched it alone at night my life would be over probably from stress/fear. 

Over Your Dead Body (Kuime)

This is a fun one if you watched the old, classic Tokaido Yotsuya Kaiden! The main couple are in a play that is doing a retelling of Tokaido Yotsuya Kaiden but the one of them ends up cheating on the other off stage (give you one guess whether it’s the guy or the girl!). As the affair turns twisted, this movies gore goes wiiiilllld.


 

And there you have it! J-horror movies for all sorts of horror fans.

You should be warned that for the most part none of these are particularly easy to find in a *cough* legal *cough* way State side. You can find the old classic ones on Hulu.com though! At least you used to be able to, that’s how I watched them. The others I recommend checking out Shudder.com — you can for sure find Audition there.

Otherwise, Google is your friend and generally speaking you would be surprised to find how much good J-Horror you can find streaming on YouTube.com.

Going Back at IT

It_coverConfession time: I’ve never read Stephen King’s IT.

Well, that’s not entirely true–I’ve tried to read IT four separate times over the last thirty years. I was twelve when the book first came out, and I remember taking my dad’s copy after he was done with it. I was a big Stephen King fan, having gobbled up all of his short stories to that point. I’d also recently finished Pet Sematary, so I was excited when I saw IT on our kitchen table one day.

But despite two separate tries in the next year or so, I wasn’t able to get more than halfway through the book. In the years since, I’ve picked up IT on two other occasions, determined to finish the story, but to no avail. I remember some truly shocking and horrifying moments in the parts that I read, but for me there were times where things almost slowed to a stop, and I just couldn’t get through the rest.

I’ve seen the made-for-TV movie with Jack Tripper, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, Judge Harry Stone, Lana Lang and and Jon-Boy Walton. I watched that entire miniseries, although it suffered from a lot of the same pacing issues I had struggled with in the book. I’ve seen it a few times in recent years and watched it through each time. As a “kids fighting monsters” story, I really love the core of IT.

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But now, we are finally getting the much-delayed big-screen adaptation of IT. This week, we got our first glimpse of the new Pennywise, played by Hemlock Grove’s Bill Skarsgard. And all the talk of IT got me to thinking–perhaps the fifth time’s the charm.

So, I’m diving back into IT. I’ll be posting a blog or two about my experience with the story over the next month or so. If you’ve never read IT, or want to revisit the story before the movie comes out, I invite you to rad along with me. You can always hit me up on Twitter @SeeBrianWrite.

Salem…Witches and History and Fun, Oh My!

I got home from vacation and wanted to share a little day trip we took to Salem. Yes, Salem, Massachusetts…yup, the place of the horrific witch trials. A city dripping with history. The old buildings still stand, making it a neat place to visit. Because of time, I didn’t get to see everything. Dude, I didn’t even know about the everything there was to see.

Note: Give yourself an entire day to see Salem.

I thought it would be a cool place to see, but more than that, a fascinating place to just be. I wanted to walk the streets, to set foot where such terrible and interesting history happened.

There are plenty of touristy shops! And yes, I got a T-shirt. BECAUSE. And yes, the stereotypical “witch” image is everywhere, but you have to look past that.

First stop was the Salem Witch Museum.

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Cool, huh? There are two parts to this place. The first presentation focuses on the witch trials, the facts. All around the top of the room, eerie lights lit scenes of life in 1692 New England as a creepy voice told the tale of a group of girls, who, for reasons no one will ever truly know, began the craziness.

Fear. Accusations. Witches.

Many people died. Innocent people. Their names were written on a glowing circle on the floor to honor them, to remember what fear, what paranoia can do.

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This hangs on the wall of the waiting room of the Salem Witch Museum. And yes, that column is labeled hanged.

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Nineteen people were hung for witchcraft in Salem. And despite what the stories say, no one was burned at the stake, well, not in the good ole US of A…in England, however, that happened. Yup. The settlers brought the fear with them.

No pictures were allowed inside the museum, so if you’re interested, you’ll have to find the time to go.

The second part of the museum took a look at witches through the ages. From Celtic women, who used herbs to heal, to scary crones hiding in the woods casting spells, to the green-skinned wicked witch of the East, to the witches of now, yup, now. In the 1980’s Wiccan was recognized as a religion.

I was impressed with the museum. Even though they added plenty of creepiness, dim lighting, and a bit of drama to the story telling, I learned something. I left with the knowledge that the real horror of the time was not witches casting harmful spells, but the fact that so many innocent people died. Why did so many die? Because humans are constantly looking for a reason, for someone to blame.

To the people of 1692 Salem, the Devil roamed the Earth. He could be anyone, anything, influencing the weak and controlling the strong.

People trying to survive, to start a new life in America, constantly afraid…of death from disease, from accidents, from the weather. They looked over their shoulders for the Devil or for the evil lurking in someone else, blaming their neighbor when something went wrong, accusing each other of witchcraft.

That is true horror. Paranoia and fear, which comes from a lack of knowledge.

And still in the present, when bad things happen, we point fingers and pass the blame. And so the terror continues.

Salem is full of neat old buildings. I got to walk most of the city, but I did miss out on a few things. I’ll list them here, just in case.

Gallows Hill Museum and Theater… facts, myths, and legends of the witch trials.

Salem Wax Museum

The Witch House…the 17th century home of Judge Jonathan Corwin from the witch trials

Witch Dungeon Museum…A live reenactment of the trial and a guided tour of the dungeon

Witch History Museum…with scenes depicting untold stories of the witch trials

And of course there are walking tours of Salem…After Dark Walking Tour, Haunted Footsteps Ghost Tour, and The Salem Witch Walk. And I hear during the month of October the place is hopping!

I didn’t get to experience everything, which makes me sad, but what I did see was pretty awesome! Let me leave you with some of the pictures I took.

Street of Salem

Street of Salem

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The House of Seven Gables...The Nathaniel Hawthorne house

The House of Seven Gables…The Nathaniel Hawthorne house

Nathaniel Hawthorne birthplace

Nathaniel Hawthorne birthplace

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A great old cemetery...love to hang out there at night!

A great old cemetery…love to hang out there at night!

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A fun day! One that made me think. One that made me sad about what humans can do to one another.