Sunday, January 31, 2016

Interview I Did With Paranormal Underground Now on Podcast

If you did not listen to my interview with Paranormal Underground live January 21st, the podcast for it is now available HERE. They mentioned it will also be on iTunes soon, if not already available there.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Supernatural Friday: Women Writers of Horror

Why would women write about monsters or ghosts? I am sure there are readers who say stick to writing romance or fantasy. But women have just as much right to write the scary stuff and about monsters as does their male counterparts. After all, in the long run, it is all about the story. 

At, an article mentioned how women writers “often found the supernatural a way to challenge and condemn their role in society.” It seems male writers have dominated supernatural fiction, those like M R James, Edgar Allan Poe, HP Lovecraft, Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, Oliver Onions and others.  But female writers have been on the horror scene in the past, too. Shirley Jackson, for instance. She wrote, The Haunting of Hill House, the only story to this day that scared me in the daytime, in a room full of people. Others had to do it at night, with me in a room alone. Susan Hill who wrote Woman in Black, is another. A classic ghost story from 1892, is Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper. Her nameless narrator, suffering from post-natal depression, is confined to bed rest under the care of her doctor husband and begins to lose her mind.  Confined to an old nursery with ghastly wallpaper, she sees strangled heads and unblinking “bulbous eyes” in its pattern. Eventually, a skulking female figure appears, seemingly trapped behind the bars of its design. Is it the narrator’s own hidden self? When her husband enters to find her tearing down the wallpaper, she tells him “I’ve got out at last. And I’ve pulled off most of the paper so you can’t put me back!”

Do women authors use ghost stories to exorcise their resentments over societal restrictions? After all, it can be said that the ghost is the ultimate outsider – an absent presence, all-seeing and yet unable to partake of life in any meaningful way. Do we have insight differently from male writers? Can what a woman writes be more downright frightening than what a man writes? Is the way we pen the words on paper or type onscreen haunt the person as they read? Maybe we even make the monster sympathetic. Still horrifying, but a monster the reader just care about. Or not.

With February coming around and Women in Horror a theme for the month, this may be the time for readers to discover female horror authors. There are those I am sure readers already know about; Anne Rice, Sarah Pinborough, Laurell K. Hamilton and Caitlin R. Kiernan.  Others are Tanith Lee, Elizabeth Massie, Lisa Morton, Yvonne Navarro, Carrie Ryan, Cherie Priest, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, and much, much more. A good place to check for women horror writers is at Horror Writers Association. Try someone new today. 

So instead of picking up that Stephen King or other male horror authors, try several feminine writers instead. We just might bring "SCARE" to a whole new level.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Paranormal Petersburg and Stories in Top Ten of Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 2015!

Final tallies of winners for the Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 2015 are up, and my nonfiction ghost book and two short stories made the top ten of their categories! 

Paranormal Petersburg, Virginia, and the Tri-Cities Area made #3 in the Nonfiction books category.  

My short horror story, "Silence," that appeared in the Nightmares and Echoes II: The Return anthology made #10 in Short Horror Story category.  Nightmares and Echoes II: The Return itself made #10 in Top Ten for Anthologies category.

The erotic horror short story, "Pick Up Date," I wrote under the pseudonym, Sapphire Phelan, and that appeared in the anthologyShivers and Lace,  made #6 in All Other Stories category. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Supernatural Friday: Snow Angel (Original Story)

Since a nasty snowstorm is suppose to hit my area, I thought to post again my short fantasy story, "Snow Angel." 

You never know what a snowstorm may bring with it.

(This story is copyrighted, so just share the link if you want others to read it.)

Snow Angel
          Pamela K. Kinney

I remember that winter night when I saw the snow angel. It had just started to snow after supper, about six o’clock. Thanks to the weather, when the sky would have been just turning dusk, instead darkness covered the scene like a shadow.
Pressing my face against the ice-cold glass of the large picture window in the living room, I watched the snow falling in the dark. It was illuminated by an eerie kind of ghost-light. At least that’s how I thought of it.
Silence. The only movement came from a lone cat struggling through the drifts to disappear down a storm drain across the street. 
I sensed rather than heard someone behind me. I blew out my breath, fogging the glass.
“Mom, it’s time for bed.”
My daughter, Marie. Of course, who else would it be, since I lived with her and her husband, Andy?
I looked over my shoulder at her. “This feels like a reversal of when you wanted to stay up later. Remember those days?”
She sighed. “I’m sorry, Mom, but the doctor gave me strict instructions that you get enough rest.”
Grumbling, I moved away and headed down the hallway to my bedroom, Marie close on my heels. Not caring, I shrugged off my clothes and flung them to the floor. Marie flashed frustration on her face, but stooped and picked up the clothing, tossing it in a hamper nearby, snatching my nightgown and slipping it on. I ducked beneath the soft pink blanket on my bed. My daughter leaned over to give me a kiss on my cheek. Feather-soft, her lips tickled my skin.  
“’Night,” she said, her voice a whisper, “and dream of snow angels dancing in the snow.”
“That’s silly,” I said. “I only told you that story when you were a kid to get you to sleep during the night. It was my way of getting you to not worry about monsters in closets or under your bed.”
“There are all kinds of angels in Heaven, Mom. The snow angel is God’s own special answer to make sure that snow falls just right so that children will have a wonderful winter world to marvel at.” She stroked my hair. “Least that’s how you explained it to me. Now go to sleep.” 
She left me alone. I didn’t feel somnolent.  Instead I never felt so wide awake.
I slipped out of bed and sat on the window seat by my bedroom window. I peered through the glass and tried not to smog it up with my breath, hoping the snowflakes were still lit up with that odd glow. Thank goodness, they still were.
Just then, I noticed a dark shadow moving in the distance, outlined by the glow, too. Flickering off and on like a shorted bulb, it appeared to be gliding closer and closer to the house. I rubbed my eyes, thinking they were playing tricks on me. But when I took my hands away, something peered back at me from the other side of the window, and it was not my own reflection! 
Heart pounding, I toppled off the window seat. Its head—at least I assumed that was its head—popped through the glass as if it were water and looked down at me. Twin orbs of icy-blue glowed from that dark visage. The glow grew brighter and brighter. Unable to move or speak, I fell into that glow and a sense of peace and warmth filled me. I stood. 
“Who are you?” I whispered.
Silence.  It slid its head back through the window. I got the feeling that it wanted me to join it outside. Not even stopping for a robe or shoes, I unlatched my window and shoved it and the screen up. Frigid air invited itself in and I shivered, but I still climbed out. I dropped down into a soft drift of snow piled beneath my window. To my surprise, I didn’t feel the cold snow squished between my toes and the freezing wind of the blizzard biting into my exposed skin. A warmth filled me, and, feeling giddy, I danced through the snow, laughing. 
My visitor took my hands, and I stopped dancing and looked up at it. It loomed over me, the ghost-light revealing a long figure of ice and snow. Its wings, made not of feathers but icicles, chimed like church bells. The being was glorious and terrifying at the same time. I wasn’t frightened. 
“You’re a snow angel, aren’t you?” I asked breathlessly. “A real snow angel.”
It just pressed me against it. Together, arm in arm, we danced a waltz through the snowflakes. We seemed to be floating on air. Magical, like Christmas morning or that first kiss. 
There was nothing to fear, and, when the angel offered, I let it fly me up, up, through swirling snowflakes, high above the neighborhood.
At first I never gave a thought to my family. But when I heard the screaming and crying from far away, it drew me back. I peeked at the scene below. Morning had dawned and the snow stopped. Something small and indistinct dressed in a pink nightgown lay blanketed by snow right under my bedroom window. 
The window was still propped open. Marie dropped to her knees in the snow and snatched up that still form, screaming and crying. Andy stood over her, talking on his cell phone. 
Marie stared up at the sky. She acted like she couldn’t see me. But I saw her tear-stained face and the pain in her eyes. “Why, God, why?”
I wanted to go to her, but I felt a touch on my shoulder and I looked to see the snow angel hovering beside me. It held out a hand. I took it.
I looked back at Marie and said, “It’s all right, everything’s all right.”
Ready now
I nodded with a smile. We rose higher and higher and passed through a tear in the sky that appeared.  The tear closed behind us and I passed through shining gates, entering the snowy fields of Heaven.

My Live Interview Tonight on Paranormal Underground Radio

Tonight, I will be interviewed by Paranormal Underground, a paranormal radio show.

It begins 9:30 p.m. Eastern and ends at 10:40 p.m. For Pacific it will be 6:30 p.m., Mountain: 7:30 p.m. and Central: 8:30 p.m. You can listen live at

If you wish to do the forum chat, you must sign up to do that at the Paranormal Underground Radio's Mixlr page.

It will not just be about my latest ghost book, Paranormal Petersburg, Virginia, and the Tri-Cities Area, but also two of the Paranormal World Seekers DVDS, Return to Fort Magruder and Investigation at the Bistro in Petersburg.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Two Appearances This Week: Chesterfield Historical Society and Marscon

I am doing two author appearances/signings this week.

I am doing a talk about ghosts of the Tri-Cities area, selling and signing copies of my book, Paranormal Petersburg, Virginia, and the Tri-Cities Area and selling copies of The Bistro in Petersburg Paranormal World Seekers DVDs afterwords. It will be this Wednesday, January 13th, at the Colonial Heights Historical Society meeting from 7:00-9:00 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Colonial Heights Library, 1000 Yacht Basin Drive, Colonial Heights, Virginia 23834. For directions, you 

can call the library at 804-520-0384.

I will also be a guest at Marscon, a science fiction,fantasy and horror convention at the DoubleTree Williamsburg, 50 Kingsmill Road Williamsburg VA. 23185. It will be from January 15-17th.  For more information  and to see what panels and programming will be held:

Friday, January 08, 2016

Supernatural Friday: Forget the Killer with the Hook--The Bunnyman is Scarier!

There are urban legends of the man with the hook in Lover’s Lane,  the Halloween campus murder, the babysitter story, and many more of serial killers that are not real. Or are they? But the Bunnyman is unique in that he wears a bunny costume. 

The myth first popped up in 1976. It had the Bunnyman responsible for the deaths of two children in Clifton, Virginia. Rumors of the disappearance of other children, plus the horrible mutilations of animals, circulated during the telling of the story that same year. No one dared go out at night, especially not near the bridge where this psycho is supposed to be hanging around. 

In 1992, more was added to the tale of the Bunnyman, where murdered children hang from a covered bridge and the supposed killer is an inmate escapee dressed in a bunny suit. The Bunnyman earned his nickname because he nourished himself on rabbits while perused by the police. Other variations of the tale had him hunting rabbits and using their pelts to make clothing for himself.

Years later, when people began to use the Internet, this terrifying legend got new rebirth. One widely circulated version on the Net has inmates from an insane asylum escaped in 1904 while being transferred to Lorton prison. One of the inmates was named Douglas J. Grifon. He murdered fellow inmate Marcus Wallster. He became the Bunnyman. The location, plus the names of several victims Grifon killed as the Bunnyman and dates of their murders are mentioned and says anyone can check the Clifton Town Library to verify the facts. Facts that are not true.

There’s no insane asylum in Fairfax County. Lorton Prison never came to be until 1910. And when it did, it was part of the District of Columbia corrections system, not Virginia’s. Neither Wallster nor Grifon appeared in any court records, and there is no Clifton Town Library. 

More is added to this tale of this murderer dressed as a Bugs Bunny from Hell. It says that a note found on the inmate, Marcus, who supposedly was found hanging from the tunnel entrance beneath Bunnyman Bridge. The words on the paper written, "You'll never find me no matter how hard you try! Signed, The Bunnyman." 

It is claimed that if you walk all the way down the tunnel at around midnight (which believe me isn’t much of a walk, as I’ve been there), the Bunnyman will snatch you before you get a word out and hang you from the entrance of the bridge. Then you’ll swing back and forth like a Halloween decoration left over after the spooky night itself.

Another story told in 2001 has a guide and six local students (no mention if they were in high school or college) had found parts of mutilated rabbits strewn around, heard noises, and thought they saw figures moving in the woods. Frightened, they left the area.

There are many stories told by young people about Bunnyman. The Internet is a great breeding ground for the Bunnyman legend where once it was spread by word of mouth, except now the world learns of this scary being, where before it was just the localities of Northern Virginia and lower Maryland. 

In Reston, Virginia, there used to be a dirt road leading off of Sunset Hills Road, just before it intersected with Reston Avenue. The kids in town knew that it led to the Bunnyman’s house. Supposedly, one Halloween night he dressed up in a bunny costume, shot his wife and kids, then opened the door to trick-or-treaters all night with the corpses of his family still in the house.

Another tale has a guy in a bunny costume standing in the middle of the road at the bottom of a hill in Clifton. As cars came down the hill, he would throw an ax at the vehicle and somehow, he always killed the person or persons inside.

There’s the tale of a mental patient that escaped from a bus transporting patients when it crashed in the woods near the bridge. The authorities were called in, but when they searched for the man, they never found him. Later, carcasses of rabbits began to be found, scattered around the bridge. It seems that the mental patient was living in the woods, surviving off of the meat of the rabbits. But when they discovered some teenagers gutted and hanging from the bridge, the local authorities put out a manhunt for "the Bunnyman,” as the local children called him. The story goes that they eventually caught up with him. Just as they were about to apprehend the Bunnyman, though, he jumped in front of a train roaring down the tracks. Since then, it is said that the Bunnyman’s spirit haunts the bridge, and that on Halloween at midnight, his spirit becomes visible right over the bridge that bears his name. Drunken teenagers can always be found at the base of the bridge at midnight on Halloween, waiting to see if the spirit of Bunnyman will appear.

Another take on the legend has a young man from Clifton, Virginia who came upon the bridge while traveling. Later, he killed his parents and dragged their bodies into the woods to hang them from the bridge, and then committed suicide. In 1943, three teenagers, two men and a young woman, went to the Bunnyman Bridge on Halloween night. The next morning they were found dead, hung from the bridge, their bodies slashed open. Notes were found attached to their feet, with the words written," You'll never catch the Bunnyman!"

One witness claims to his own personal experiences with Bunnyman Bridge. He has been out there about a dozen times, since it’s about fifteen minutes from his house. Most of the time, he and his friends hang around the bridge, waiting to see if anything would happen. Nothing does, but they feel as if someone or something is watching them. Even though the bridge is located about twenty-five miles from Washington D.C., it is still in the middle of nowhere. Only a few houses nestle within the woods that surround the bridge and railroad tracks. If you drive through the tunnel, only one car at a time, as it is small. The last time he and his buddies went out there, they heard voices that came from the woods, whispers that sounded as if they originated twenty feet from where the young men stood. Frightened, they bolted.

So scary is the Bunnyman, that he inspired a cult horror flick,Donnie Darko.

Monday, January 04, 2016

My Ghost Book and Short Story Nominated at Preditors and Editors 2015 Readers Poll

Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 2015 is now up through January 14th. 

Paranormal Petersburg, Virginia, and the Tri-Cities Area was nominated at Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 2015. If you read it or even to help, vote for it at

An anthology I have a story included, Nightmares & Echoes 2: The Return was nominated.

My story in the anthology, "Silence" was also nominated at

If you read any of them, please vote for them. Thank you.

Friday, January 01, 2016

Supernatural Friday: The Cultural Dinosaur: Guest Blogger Joseph Erhardt

Welcome author Joseph Erhardt as my guest blogger for todays Supernatural Friday. His collection of short stories was just released and is now available, and he is here to blog about dinosaurs.

Pamela K. Kinney’s Supernatural Friday column is, well, for the supernatural. But before we go there, I’d like to take just a few lines to talk about monsters that are, or at least were, Real.
Most of us remember our first exposure to dinosaurs. For many, dinosaurs arrived in our lives via the television or the movie theater. Whether Jurassic Park or The Valley of Gwangi—or even any of the Godzilla movies—these ancient behemoths brought forth a feeling of excitement, of awe. In a way, the dinosaurs were frightening without being that frightening.
For others, the first dinosaurs appeared in books off the school library’s shelves. I recall the first book about these creatures that I read, and how it began with the illustration of a dimetrodon, a synapsid that looked like a large lizard with a vertebral fin (probably for heat-exchange), but which was actually in the line that eventually led to mammals. Only later in this volume did it show brontosaurus (no apatosaurus at that time) and stegosaurus and tyrannosaurus rex.
For me, my first exposure to dinosaurs occurred in a bowl of cereal. Yup. Mom poured out a bowl of flakes, added milk, and set the bowl in front of me. Three spoonfuls later, I spotted a green leg among the flakes and said, “Mom! Mom! There’s an animal in my food!”
That’ll get your attention all right.
For the next several weeks, I ate only cereals that included, as premiums, small plastic models of various dinosauria.
So what is it about dinosaurs that makes them, well, likeable?
The dinos that walked on four legs and ate plants probably reminded us of elephants or rhinoceroses stretched out to sizes that made them even more stupendous and impressive. Because they didn’t eat meat, they were cuddly and good big friends to have, especially for a child so dependent on adults that having friends like brontosaurus or stegosaurus diminished that feeling of helplessness, of not being able to fend for yourself.
But the dinos that walked and ran on two legs—those fascinated because we, too, are bipedal. Our sense of awe here may be sparked by an innate, automatic anthropomorphication—these dinosaurs were, in a way, like us.
Today dinosaurs are still popular, especially as movie monsters, because they have a basis in fact, viz., they were the products of eons of natural selection. The ways they looked, acted and ate were that way because of evolutionary pressures. They were not artificial, ungainly monsters made up in some artist’s or writer’s fever dream. This gives dinosaurs a verisimilitude that other monsters simply do not have. These guys were our monsters. They existed, they lived on this planet, and they ruled it for millions of years longer than the arrogant genus Homo is likely to survive.
Heck, it took a whole asteroid and the subsequent volcanism of the Deccan Traps to knock these guys over. They deserve our respect. And awe.
Of course, one dinosaur did survive. And this scaly old curmudgeon has recently collected his tales of speculative fiction into a compendium known as The Dinosaur Chronicles. The foreword explains just how he survived, and who is responsible. The stories run the gamut from straight SF to fantasy to speculative mystery. About half have been published in paying print markets; most of the rest were just too long for the markets of their day. Included in the book are the following tales:

The Blue Smoke Test -- An over-the-top tale of a scientist who creates a time machine and precipitates the Ultimate Disaster.
The Men with the Power -- An aging, retired diplomat crashes a diplomatic soiree and uses his special talent against a dark-side version of himself.
Two Steps Forward -- A soldier with PTSD has his tormenting memories erased, which works. For a while.
Punkin' Vipers -- A Halloween tale of a man with car trouble and a field of corrupted orange orbs.
Evensong -- Of what use is a planet with a 20,000-year lifespan? And why would it be a locus for murder?
Open Frame -- Karma meets reincarnation in a bowling alley.
Eliza's Quick-Drying Polar White -- Crickets and an alternate dimension provide irony and amusement.
Who Mourns for Spring? -- An AA meeting ends with everyone really needing that drink.
Sheep in Wolf's Clothing -- A man infiltrates the annual meeting of the undead. Events do not unfold as expected.
Letter of the Law -- Sometimes being literal is being cruel.
The Practical Meek -- A man of the street exacts a painful vengeance for the death of this friend.
Edges of Memory -- A killer kills, and then forgets--utterly--that his victims ever existed. A nurse investigates and discovers a shocking secret.
Crawl Ice -- A couple is stranded in their Colorado cottage by an antagonized creature that they can't see, and it's getting bolder and smarter as the hours go by.
The Great Aribo -- Two boys at a county fair find the world's greatest juggler, who has a secret both wonderful and double-edged.

Excerpt from “Crawl Ice,” (Copyright 2015 Joseph M. Erhardt)

Evan Fisher lugged the suitcase down the walk, across a spray of ice and snow, and heaved it onto the opened tailgate of his neighbor’s pickup truck.
“That’s the last of it,” Fisher said, stuffing his gloved hands into his jacket pockets.
“Thanks, Evan,” Hank Stricker said, shoving the suitcase crosswise. He latched up the tailgate and added, “I just wish you’d get out of here along with the rest of us.”
Fisher looked back and watched as Hank’s wife locked the front door of their house. “Don’t see a need, Hank. I’ve got wood for the fireplace and enough gasoline to run the generator—when I need it—for two weeks. Power should be back by then.”
“There could be aftershocks,” Hank said. “Slides. If Mountain Electric can’t get their trucks to the lines—”
Fisher put his hand on his neighbor’s shoulder. “Hank, you worry too much.”
Snow crunched as Hank’s wife came alongside.
“Hank’s a worrier, all right,” she said, winking at her husband. “It keeps him out of trouble.”
Hank blushed but added, “So how’s Samantha feel about this?”
Fisher hesitated. “She’s not crazy about staying.” Then he grinned. “But I told her it would be romantic—just the two of us, all alone in town. Almost like pioneers.”
Hank’s wife laughed. “Evan, a weekend in a nice motel is romantic. Two weeks in a cold, dark valley in Colorado is a nightmare.”
Fisher watched Hank’s truck crawl up the winding north road. From time to time, the early-afternoon sun flashed across the tailgate, giving it one last lick before the truck finally disappeared into a cleft.
Fisher turned and trudged slowly up the block, to the rancher he shared with his wife. He wondered if the coming isolation would be a good thing or a bad thing for his marriage. Samantha had complained about being ignored, being neglected. For at least the next week, he figured, there would be no one else to “nore” or “glect.”
She should appreciate that.
As Fisher turned from the street into his walkway, he staggered as a sudden loss of traction threw him aside.
He righted himself and looked down.
A six-foot area of his front walk had iced over.
Ice in the middle of a Colorado November was no surprise. But he’d cleared the walk just that morning, and it had not gotten warm enough for any melt.
For a moment he contemplated the idea that Sam had poured water on the walk to spite him or—and his gut twinged at the thought—to deliberately injure him.
Sam might’ve changed her mind about staying, Fisher thought, but she’s not crazy.
Fisher walked to his door and let himself in.
The front door opened into the living room.
Sam’s voice carried out from the kitchen. “Evan?”
“You sonofabitch!”
Fisher rushed into the kitchen. His wife sat in jacket and panties, her bare right leg elevated on the kitchen table. A bloody bandage and a bag of ice lay across her knee.
Sam spat out the words: “You said you cleared the walk!”
“I did!”
“My ass! There’s a patch of ice—”
“I know! I nearly fell on it myself!”
Sam’s voice dropped to a menace, and she bared her teeth.
“Do you really mean to get rid of me?”
“Dammit, Sam, it’s winter out there! You’ve got to watch for the hazards, always!”
“You said you cleared the walk!”
“And I did—this morning. I don’t know how the ice happened. It couldn’t have happened. It never got above freezing today!” Fisher took off his gloves and reached for her knee. “Does it hurt? A lot?”
Sam sliced her fingernails across the back of his hand. “Do. Not. Touch. Me!”

Joseph Erhardt’s Bio:

          Joseph Erhardt is a published short story author and professional editor/writing instructor. His short fiction has appeared in Keen SF!, Maelstrom Speculative Fiction, Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine and Talebones, among others. He’s currently working on two novels and, along with Linda Lyons-Bailey, helped edit Robert E. Bailey’s final novel, Deja Noir, which is currently being marketed to the publishers. His editing services are described here: Joseph Erhardts GSC Editing

 You can buy The Cultural Dinosaur on Amazon KINDLE.