31 Days of Spooky!

“There is something haunting in the light of the moon.” —Joseph Conrad

Halloween is my favorite holiday. I’ve never really been able to pinpoint why. Maybe it’s because I love horror movies.

When I was younger, I loved the classic slasher films, but as I got older I started leaning toward Suspense, Thrillers, and Mysteries.

Every year a film company called ‘After Dark Films’ sponsored a film festival, by the same name, showcasing independent horror films. I think this was around 2008. They’d choose so many cities around the U.S. and I was grateful that San Diego was chosen each year in Southern California. I think only one year the film festival was held in Oceanside, which is about 3 hours north of San Diego on The Coaster, a commuter train similar to Amtrak, except it only went from San Diego to Oceanside. Not having a car and not even knowing how to drive, it was a nightmare to get there, but worth it in the end.

While attending my first film festival, I had befriended someone who also lived in San Diego. Every September we’d map out where the festival was going to be held and work out how long it would take to get there. We had such fun planning these annual excursions. Sadly, our friendship ended and I stopped attending those film festivals.

I still watched my fair share of horror movies on TV, but the older I got I started developing a distaste for them. Mainly, I think, because of the lack of good roles and good dialogue for women. Eventually, I stopped watching them altogether.

Then, around 2017 I was reintroduced to Old Time Radio and had joined a few groups on Facebook. In one group I asked if there were any companies that still made these radio shows. In other words, current productions, not old ones in syndication. That’s when someone introduced me to a director who was (still is) creating 15 minute Old Time Radio Mystery Theatres and puts them out on YouTube most Saturdays.

Before the pandemic he worked as a director of films, but during the pandemic he started a parent company called ‘Troupe of Lost Souls’, which produces ‘Radio Vault Mystery Theatre’. He lives in Los Angeles. The producer of the show lives in New York City. The various actors who take part in these productions live in different areas of the U.S. Some even come from other countries.

I got to know the director and producer to a degree and even hosted a listening party with both the director and producer. Good people. A few of the actors who were involved in the production on that particular Saturday while I was hosting, joined us. After listening to the show, we had a 15 minute Q&A session. That was definitely different. I had never done anything like that before. We had fun!

I’m still very much into Old Time Radio, and will listen to the Radio Vault Mystery Theatre, but I’ve not stayed in touch with the director and producer of the shows. That’s okay. Life keeps moving forward.

Now, Halloween is coming up again and there’s one thing I really miss. Sitting at the door with all the trick or treaters coming up and shouting, “Trick or Treat!” As I handed out the candy I’d tell all the little princesses and fairies how beautiful they looked, and show the appropriate fear and disgust when the Darth Vaders, hideous monsters and frightening goblins approached.

Because I’ve lived all of my adult life in apartments, there isn’t much opportunity to get these little visitors at my door anymore. *Sigh*

What I thought would be fun is if each of us put a short horror or suspense story on this page. We could keep it going for 30 days. Anyone can come in as many times as you’d like, multiple times a day, to publish a short yarn to put us all in the spooky mood. They don’t even have to be yours. I will start. Here is a short piece I wrote.

Helpless

She hurried off before he had a chance to let her know not to enter the house. She was deaf, you see, so it wouldn’t have done any good to call after her. Nor could he run after her, because he was tied up – literally.

He knew the creature that restrained him was also waiting for her inside the house. All he could do was helplessly watch her slowly recede into the murky mist.

~The End~

©Kelly Jeanne 2021

Happy Halloween Everyone!

Now, show me what you got….

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36 thoughts on “31 Days of Spooky!

  1. Trick or Treat?
    The dogs bark at the doorbell.
    Dusk gathers early, now the clocks have changed. Living out here, in the middle of fields, I don’t get trick-or-treaters. The two youngsters living up the drove don’t bother dressing up for our few terraced houses.
    I shout at the dogs to stop barking and search for treats to offer. There isn’t even a biscuit in the house.
    When I lived in the suburbs, I bought in supplies of sweets for Halloween to reduce the risk of having eggs thrown at the door. It didn’t always satisfy my night visitors, but I drew the line at encouraging extortion by handing out coins.
    I recall emptying the last of my small change into the Poppy collection box at the newsagent yesterday.
    The barking hasn’t put off our callers who ring the doorbell again. Too late, now, to pretend I’m not here. I should have stayed quiet and let the dogs bark. I grab the fruit bowl and shut the dogs in the living room, close enough to release quickly if required.
    I open the door on two shadowy figures, reminding me I have yet to replace the porch light bulb. One dark shape thrusts at me a copy of the Watchtower.
    “Are you ready to meet your Maker?”

    Liked by 3 people

  2. It’s hard to imagine you having a hard time coming up with ideas.
    If you’d like, we could do like one of the challenges in AFFWC. We can each write a bit and whoever comes in can add to it. It would be interesting to see what we’ll end up with by the end of the month. Anyone else who comes in is more than welcome to add to it!
    At the sametime, I’ll continue posting the continuation of my horror saga that I’ve begun.
    Happy Haunting=^..^=

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I submitted one to last year’s ‘To Hull and Back’ competition (written with Val C) with no luck. Sadly there was no room for any of them in our latest anthology, ‘Three Sheets to the Wind’.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Helpless (2)

    He heard her knock on the door and renewed his hopeless struggle against the bonds restraining him. Light shone through the mist as the wide door opened to swallow her, and the house seemed to leer at him.

    The creature that had restrained him was merely a tool. It was the house itself that was evil and the ghosts and ghouls inside its servants, summoned by its former owner to revenge herself on the village that burned her as a witch, centuries ago.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hey, guuuurrrlll! I love it! But, you lose Brownie Points because you piggybacked off my story. You fiend!! Great embellishment of my already masterpiece…….
      Go to 31 Days of Spooky Part One. I’ve started a continuing tale sure to give your goosebumps goosebumps!
      It’s something I wrote last year and I never finished. Hopefully, by the time I move along in the series it will be complete.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. think of it as your story inspiring me to think about what came next. (I do struggle with thinking up ideas…)
        Posting something as you go along does give incentive to finish it. I usually cheat and finish it before I post in bite-sized instalments.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Helpless (3)

    As dusk deepened, the windows of the house brightened with the flickering light of candle flames, lighting up the For Sale sign beside the front steps. Sounds of unholy revels echoed into the night, and the creepers around the door seemed to dance to the ungodly music, ready to catch any escapee. For hours he fought to free his hands so that he could at least cover his ears against the shrieking and cackling.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Helpless (4)

      He knew he would never stop trying to free himself. Finally, he managed to inch himself toward an old, rusty, rail spike where he frantically began rubbing the leather straps that kept him shackled. All the while, he kept his eye on the house. He could still see her silhouette moving from room to room. Keeping an eye on her is what kept him from giving up.
      Just imagining her at the mercy of that living, breathing, monstrosity of a house (on sale, no less!) was more than he could handle. Even though he was born and raised in Gary, Indiana, he always imagined himself to be a knight in shining armor. He wanted to be her knight in shining armor. All he needed was Excalibur.
      At this point, his imagination started going wild. In his mind he was standing like a Roman god, gleaming in the sun with Excalibur in his manly grip, shouting,
      “I’ll save you!
      Never fear!
      For I am here!
      Be of good cheer!
      Don’t shed a tear!
      His conscience stopped him and said,
      “Either you’re a knight in shining armor or a Roman god living in Rome. You can’t be both.”
      As it turned out, his imagination created such a surge of energy, and before he knew it, he had freed himself from the leather restraints.

      Liked by 3 people

    1. When I was younger I used to love those flasher films; the really gory ones.
      As I got older I started praying to God that He would make it easier for me to stop watching them. Now I love watching those older, cheesy films. As far as stories go, I love the tamer Halloween stories.
      I don’t go for gore anymore.
      You are more than welcome to add to the story. This is how I set this up this particular page,
      Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. But already the sun was rising. Sounds were fading from the old house that had looked to be a bargain ripe for conversion. In the half-light, the creepers and ivy settled back from the door, and all was silent. He rushed to the house, calling for her, even though she would not hear him.
    He realised he could not hear his own voice – or, indeed, anything at all.
    The house squatted, unmoved and unmoving, as in the estate agent’s photograph while he He searched inside and out. She was nowhere to be found.
    At 9am on November 1st, he was at the agent’s office to put a deposit on the house.
    He would be here next October 31st, ready to find her again.

    The End?
    (or is it?)

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I’m confused. Why did you set the date for November 1st? A date which is in the future? Are you saying that he is a time traveler?
    I’m also impressed that you wrote November 1st and not 1 November. You remembered they were in the states.
    Kudos to you, Cathy! I give you back your Brownie points!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. (That did actually occur to me… about the date. Over here we use both orders in conversation and text, but 1/11/22 in digits.)
    November 1st is All Saints Day, the day after Halloween, and the ghouls and ghosties have all disappeared until next year. (Unless one escaped…?)

    Liked by 3 people

  8. This morning.

    October early morning forest walk.
    Dogs leap at moving shadows in the bush.
    Fingers of white mist rising from the lake
    Surround three dappled cygnets, tawny-white,
    That drift between the rising hazy shrouds.
    Spooky.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. You know, Cathy, think of it this way. Since we’re getting older, it would be extremely advantageous to always have our cellphones with us in case of some sort of accident or emergency. Getting older means being more vulnerable.
    We have the luxury of being able to take our phones with us wherever we go. We ought to take advantage of that.
    Getting old isn’t for sissies.

    Liked by 2 people

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