One of my favourite moments from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) is not a typical choice considering the film’s many infamous scenes. Rather than showers, murders and other more memorable images, I particularly love a relatively bland scene later on in the film. It has narrative development in its eerie punch line but has little else on screen in terms of Hitchcock generally: it is perfunctory … Continue reading Horror’s Pleasure of Distance
On a rather muddled day in early autumn, I decided to visit M.R. James. In recent years, I’ve become interested in the places that James frequented, usually because they have had clear and profound effects upon his ghost stories. Visiting them with a sense of curiosity seems to invert the man’s clichés back upon him; walking in search of the known as opposed to the … Continue reading Wanders: M.R. James’ Grave
At the time of writing this, my book on Folk Horror is a few weeks away from being printed. By the time you read this, however, it should be available to buy. I’ve written about the detail of the book earlier when it was due to be published late last year. However, I wanted to get a few words down again now that it is … Continue reading Folk Horror: Hours Dreadful and Things Strange
As recently announced, I have a book being released in January all about Folk Horror and its many related areas of interest. The book has been in the works for the last year or so though many of the arguments within have been growing now for several years. Though I’ll undoubtedly being doing the usual interview-esque things to coincide with the release in December and … Continue reading Folk Horror: Hours Dreadful and Things Strange (January, 2017)
I have been lucky enough to have this year’s Halloween film, No Diggin’ Here – a film about M.R. James, Aldeburgh and A Warning To The Curious – premiered on the BFI’s website. It was a Halloween treat that, until I saw it happen in full, I didn’t quite believe, but I count myself incredibly lucky for such an opportunity. A few weeks back, the … Continue reading Short Film – No Diggin’ Here.
This presentation was originally given at the Folk Horror Revival day at The British Museum (16/02/2016). My thanks to the fellow admins of the Folk Horror Revival, especially Jim Peters and Andy Paciorek. There’s an overt connection between analogue technology and the narratives surrounding paranormal activity in British horror, especially when made during the 1970s. No doubt there are connections between the interest in such … Continue reading The Ghost In The Grain: Analogue Hauntings of the 1970s
There are few writers that figure more prominently in everything I do than the teller of beautiful Edwardian ghost stories, M.R. James. Alongside W.G. Sebald, J.G. Ballard, Alan Garner and Virginia Woolf, his writing holds a great power over me with its familiar yet unfamiliar worlds. His writing preys upon my mind at regular intervals, even outside of the Christmas period from which they were … Continue reading Trailer – No Diggin’ Here.
Above is the trailer for the next short film, Heavy Water. This is to be the longest film this year and the most ambitious in terms of scope in spite of future projects containing narratives and actors. Heavy Water ‘s difficulty is the connection of its two main themes represented by adjacent places on the Suffolk coast; the strange, liminal landscape surrounding Sizewell nuclear power … Continue reading Trailer – Heavy Water.
“The contours of the Sizewell power plant, its Magnox block a glowering mausoleum, begin to loom upon an island far out in the pallid waters where one believes the Dogger Bank to be, where once shoals of herring spawned and earlier still, a long, long time ago, the delta of the Rhine flowed out into the sea and where green forests grew from silting sands.” … Continue reading Wanders: Sebald, Sizewell and Dunwich (Suffolk).
In October I released a ghost story for Halloween. It was partly inspired by Algernon Blackwood’s The Willows, but the majority of its actual narrative structure (especially in terms of character) came from a short story of my own inspired as well by Blackwood’s story. As it’s near Christmas, the original story is presented below. It’s very typically Jamesian and should be read late at night … Continue reading Salthouse Marshes (Ghost Story).