Free Things, Thoughts and Further Recommendations

Gothic Giveaway
Gothic Giveaway

Free eBooks, Recommendations for Podcasts and Viewing

So, this is my irregular newsletter. Let’s get the free stuff out of the way first! The big Gothic Giveaway. Click here to browse what’s on offer.

I set this up and I have accepted a wide range of genres. It was supposed to be Gothic and horror but we have a fair bit of fantasy and fairy stories, which is fine.

Take your pick! There are a lot of books in the giveaway now.


I’ve been reading but not mainly horror. I read a science fiction book, kind of, about a man who was obsessed with text based MUDs at the beginning of internet gaming, much like myself, and I’m reading one of Iain Sinclair’s psychogeographical wanderings round London and well as several books on writing.

But I did manage to finish Ellen Datlow’s best of best of horror book. It was a class collection that I enjoyed.

I also read The Ghastling Book Twelve which is a horror zine that is very well done. I didn’t enjoy the stories as much as previous volumes, though there was a stand-out in Tom Johnstone’s Creeping Forth Upon Their Hands set in Ireland.

I also ordered two ‘zines called Strange Days from Etsy. They’re put together by a guy in New York called Andrew Juhl and are true life (apparently) stories about paranormal stuff, such as UFOs and cryptids. More power to his elbow for doing these.


I’ve been listening to a lot of Christmas Songs, but in addition I have bought Dvoynik’s Ghost Pieces on Bandcamp. Been listening to The Midnight Folk by Hare & The Moon and inevitably The Heartwood Institute. These are all for when I’m in my strange, haunted mood.

Otherwise I’ve been listening to the new Hawkwind album and Follakzoid, for getting my psychedelic rhythmic thing going. Very hypnotic both.


You will know that I spend a lot of my time producing The Classic Ghost Stories Podcast. I am very proud that I have recorded and published both The Turn of the Screw by Williams James and A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens for the podcast for the Christmas Season. I’m going to drop an M R James in for Christmas too.

Check them out:

A Christmas Carol

The Turn of the Screw

They are all free though a donated Ko-Fi never goes amiss for a thirsty podcaster. You can pick up some free audiobooks while you’re there too.

Other Folks’ Podcasts

I listen to lots of Podcasts. I enjoyed the Lore episode about the closes and tunnels under Edinburgh.

I listen to Buddha at the Gaspump when I’m feeling spiritual, and horror otherwise.

I have loved loved loved the Mystery Machine Lovecraft Investigations podcast. That has been the big hit of my December listening. The Shadow over Innsmouth was great. I wished it could have gone on longer.

I started The Children of the Stones mainly because I loved the folk horror original version on TV way back. Initially, I had reservations about the remake and I still do a little, but I warmed to it and enjoyed it in the end.

I also enjoyed the HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast’s take on The Turn of the Screw, especially since I’d just read it. Chad Fifer and Chris Lackey are hilarious. I also listened to Frankenstein by Mary Shelley as an audiobook and enjoyed it. Reminded me of Penny Dreadful, though it should have been the other way round.

My Own Writing

I was glad to finish More Christmas Ghost Stories with the aid of my beta readers. It’s selling reasonably without any advertising and has got three very nice reviews so far: two five star and one four star.

These Christmas ghost stories aren’t mean to be scary. They are intended to be sweet. I’ve republished the three stories from the original A Christmas Ghost Story book, so don’t buy that because the new one has those. I’ve also done the audiobook version.

That one isn’t showing up yet on Audible, though it will. One of my tasks for today, though I may not manage it, is to make some of these stories available as exclusives for the paying supporters on Patreon and Substack.

I’m going over and improving an old story called The Haunting of Dungarvan Castle. I wrote it a few years ago now, but I know better now and it will be a better story.

Merry Christmas to you all!

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