If you are unable to get to a live event to watch me wave my arms about and witter on in front of an audience, there is now an alternative – The Fortean Freak-Out with Geoff Holder, a downloadable podcast of me wittering on in front of a microphone (in the best traditions of radio, the associated arm-waving will have to be imagined).
The first podcast is entitled “The Vampire with Iron Teeth” and deals with an episode covered in Paranormal Glasgow – a children’s hunt for a cannibalistic vampire in 1950s Gorbals. I expand the story into Glasgow’s wider history of children’s hunts – from ghosts and ‘maniacs’ to Spring-Heeled Jack – and look into the cultural context of the events, from American horror comics to crypto-Communists and the only time the Houses of Parliament have debated the activities of a vampire.
The podcast can be downloaded FREE from the official Fortean Freak-Out with Geoff Holder page, or alternatively listen through the Podcast page. The Fortean Freak-Out will be a regular feature, so check back for future podcasts on cannibalism in Scotland, fairylore, Jacobite paranormalism, bodysnatching, poltergeists and much else.
Thanks to Jamie Cook for editing and engineering.
**CHANGE OF DATE.** Due to the traditional Circumstances Beyond Our Control, the event at Ladywell on Monday 25th July has been cancelled. A new date has been rearranged for Wednesday 24th August, at the same time and place. Apologies to all.
On Monday 25th July I’ll be at the fab Ladywell shop in Glasgow’s Merchant City to formally launch Paranormal Glasgow with a talk and book signing. Topics of discussion will include witchcraft, demonic possession, big cats, the Vampire with Iron Teeth, and the Weegie who could prove he could miraculously go without food for weeks because he had a certificate from the Pope saying so.
The Ladywell is just a few doors down from its partner 23 Enigma, an emporium of magical artefacts that I featured in The Guide to Mysterious Glasgow. The setting is intimate – it’s a bit like the paranormal equivalent of MTV Unplugged – and so tickets are limited. I’ll have copies of all my books for sale and signing.
The Ladywell is at 268-270 High Street,
G4 0QT. Tickets are £7 – please call 0141 552 7810 or visit the shop in advance to reserve yours. The event kicks off at 7pm. Full details are at www.theladywell.com.
Paranormal Cumbria, the next book, is under way, and as part of the research I’m looking for personal stories of the supernatural and strange within the county.
So if you’ve encountered a big cat, a Black Dog, something odd in the sky, or a bogle or spirit – or anything else bizarre – please get in touch using the contact form located at the bottom of the ‘Events and Booking’ or ‘Media Room’ pages. Family traditions and stories passed down from previous generations are also welcome.
Please include as many details as possible – such as date, time of day, location, what happened, names of witnesses and so on – and indicate whether you are happy for the story to appear in the book, and for me to use your name in Paranomal Cumbria.
It doesn’t matter whether you are a visitor or a resident – all that is important is that the event or sighting took place in Cumbria. And of course Cumbria is much larger than just the Lake District.
I look forward to receiving despatches from the frontline of Forteana…
Over the night of Wednesday/Thursday the 29th/30th June I’ll be yabbering away on IPI-Radio, the net-based radio show run by the fine folk at International Paranormal Investigators. More details at www.ipi-radio.info. Things kick off at midnight UK time, which is early evening for the audience in the USA and Canada. I suspect Paranormal Glasgow will be discussed, along with much else relating to the rational analysis of alleged paranormal phenomena.
The live event is fully interactive, with listeners/viewers sending in questions via chat and webcams. So if you want to ask me about vampires with iron teeth, miraculous fasters, the cabinet-maker who channelled Hafod, Prince of Persia (and companion of Jesus), big cats, the Maggie Wall Witchcraft Monument or anything else from my casebook, come along to www.ipi-radio.info/ipi-live-video/ for live chat across two continents. Apparently electronical technology is involved, including something the youth of today call ‘the internet’. We’re living in the future, I tell you.
‘Paranormal Glasgow‘ is published this week (June 20th) by the fine people at The History Press
Here’s a chapter breakdown, which should give you an indication of what it2’s all about:
- Chapter 1 Spectres, Psychics and Spooky Events
- Chapter 2 Big Cats and Other Strange Animals
- Chapter 3 The Weird Human Body: Miraculous Fasts, Stigmata and Spontaneous Human Combustion
- Chapter 4 Witchcraft in Glasgow Part 1: A Hundred Years of Witch-Hunting
- Chapter 5 Witchcraft in Glasgow Part 2: The Witches of Pollok, and The Possessed Children of Bargarran and Govan
- Chapter 6 Hunting The Vampire With Iron Teeth
- Chapter 7 Bizarre Beliefs, Strange Superstitions and Magical Thinking
Among the other topics covered you can find precognition, crisis visitations, emissaries from Hell, ghosts, the Knights Templar, hoaxes, and anomalous racoons.
The book is a partner to my earlier works Paranormal Dundee and Paranormal Perthshire. For a photo gallery of Paranormal Glasgow and others, go here, or to see the sneak preview trailer visit the video page here!
Paranormal Glasgow is available from Waterstones and other bookshops, as well as Amazon and directly from The History Press.
For details of the upcoming book launch in Glasgow, please see the Events page.
This Thursday (26th May) I’m at Aberfeldy, giving a talk at the Breadalbane Community Campus at 7.30pm. The subject is ‘Mysterious Perthshire’ although I’ll be concentrating exclusively on the Highland part of Perth & Kinross, with episodes ranging from Pitlochry and Moulin through Strathtay to Loch Tay and Ben Lawers.
On the slate will be: Big Cats in Highland Perthshire, including a photograph of a big cat print in snow; UFOs, especially the notorious Calvine/Pitlochry Incident of 1990; and the Alleged Haunting of Ballechin House, a Victorian ghost investigation by the Society for Psychical Research that led to scandal, rows, and angry letters to The Times. All these will be taken from my recent book Paranormal Perthshire.
A big thank you to Bruce Paterson for letting me witter on for his show on Heartland FM.
Tickets for the talk are £5, available from the Breadalbane Community Library, or by phoning 01887 822405. The event starts at 7.30 and lasts for about an hour, and there’s free parking. Oh, and I’ll also have books for sale, as managed by my glamorous assistant.