Saturday, October 26, 2013

SCARE ME: Wodke Hawkinson

PJ -- The movie Thir13en Ghosts (alternate title: Thirteen Ghosts) is a paranormal movie about a ghost hunter, Cyrus Kriticos, who builds Basileus’s Machine and needs the Black Zodiac (13 ghosts) to open the Ocularis Infernum, or The Eye of Hell.

In order to open The Eye to Hell, Kriticos needs to catch and contain twelve ghosts before luring the thirteenth ghost to his home. After developing traps that would contain his ghosts, he and a team of paranormal hunters trap the following ghosts:

The First Born Son: The ghost of a little boy who died from being shot through the head by an arrow. The Torso: The torso is missing his head and his legs at the waist. The Bound Woman: The bound woman who was strangled by her boyfriend’s tie and buried. The Withered Lover: A woman who was partially burned in a house fire. This woman is also the wife of the planned thirteenth ghost. The Torn Prince: This ghost has much of the skin on the right side of his body missing, leaving bones and muscles. The Angry Princess: A young woman who apparently dies by committing suicide. The Pilgrimess: A woman sentenced to a slow, painful death in stocks, after being proclaimed a witch.  The Great Child and The Dire Mother: A very large and overweight child, the result of a rape by the tall man, was raised in a carnival as an attraction. He was his mother’s protector, who, at three feet tall, is unable to stand up for herself. The Hammer: A strong and muscular blacksmith who wields a large hammer. The Jackal: The Jackal is apparently the ghost of a disheveled man wearing a cage on his head. The Juggernaut: This ghost is that of a tall, ugly, and muscular man.

Cyrus captured the previously mentioned twelve ghosts and kept them in glass containment boxes in his basement. He built his entire house out of glass with spells to contain the spirits engraved throughout. He now needed the thirteenth ghost to activate the machine.

The Broken Heart: The entire plan hinges on a mortal leaping into the core of Basileus’s Machine out of pure love and becoming the thirteenth ghost.

In order to trap this person, Cyrus, who died and became a ghost himself during the capture of The Juggernaut, leaves his house to his nephew. When they arrive at the house to take possession they find the ghosts. Cyrus has an accomplice tie his nephew’s two children to the center of the machine’s floor. Sharp rails spin randomly around the two children and the only way to get to them is to jump through the razor sharp spheres. The nephew manages to make the leap without dying and thus destroys Cyrus’s plan and causes the destruction of the machine and Cyrus’s demise by the now released twelve ghosts.

But the whole reason for telling you this much about the movie is to tell you what frightened me, the paranormal aspect of the film.
First, the fact that someone designed a way to entrap ghosts and keep them contained within a single structure is a daunting thought. The only way to see these spirits was to don a pair of special glasses, and then you could see glimpses of them running at you, as if the film had been broken and spliced together incorrectly; each time they reappeared they were closer to you. Many of these ghosts were violent, wishing nothing more than to cause a person harm.

Second, three of the ghosts were extremely vicious. One, the torn prince, would swing a baseball bat with intent to end his target’s life. Two, the juggernaut, had been shot to death by the police after going insane and turning into a serial killer. His ghost haunted the junkyard he had been raised in. His grotesque height and appearance, coupled with his violence and insanity were a frightening sight. And three, the jackal. The jackal was a monster during his life that developed an uncontrollable taste for the female body; he became a wild and cunning sexual predator. After commitment to an asylum, the doctors locked his head in a cage and kept him in a dark basement cell.

Of these three ghosts, The Jackal frightened me the most. The device locked around his head, his wild long matted black hair, his exposed and rotted teeth, and his claw-like hands coming at you in flashes were enough to cause me to draw back into my chair whenever he tried to attack. I probably would have had nightmares if it weren’t for the fact that I already dream vividly and regularly and many of my nights are filled with horrors.

Whichever of these ghosts you would find the most terrifying, remember, there might be one out there that makes your choice seem tame. Ghosts walk with us, and not all are nice.

Karen -- This happened years ago, after The Exorcist (the book) was released and just before the movie version came out. I was home alone, watching a late-night talk show. I had gone into the kitchen to fix a glass of iced tea when I heard a sound from the TV speaker that raised the hair on the back of my neck. It’s one of the few times in my life that happened to me. It’s a strange feeling.

I rushed back into the front room and stood in front of the television. The guest that night was William Peter Blatty, author of The Exorcist, and he had brought along a recording of a genuine (allegedly) exorcism that had taken place in Italy. The sound I’d heard from the kitchen was supposedly the voice of a young boy. However, he did not sound like a child; it sounded like the voice of a huge beast. I could hear the priests’ voices in the background, and by their tenor, could tell they were yelling. Yet their voices were small compared to the bellowing of the possessed boy. It was, for that time period, quite shocking and creepy. All these years later, it still stands out in my mind as one of the scariest things I’d ever heard.

I had reason to be a bit jumpy in the house I lived in at that time. My dog, Blackie, would at times behave as if he were seeing something nobody else could see. Toward the end of the long hallway, for instance, there was a linen closet that made Blackie nervous. Many times, he stood and barked at the closed door as if there were an intruder hiding inside. If you opened the door, he would run. There never was anyone inside. At least, not that we could see!

One night I was reading in bed with Blackie resting near my feet. I noticed he was looking at the open door that led to the dark front room. I laid my book aside to observe him. He cocked his head and turned it slowly as if watching someone in the other room move about. I merely found it interesting at this point. That changed suddenly when there was a noise from the front room. It sounded exactly as if someone had picked up the big ceramic ashtray off the coffee table and then set it firmly back down. Blackie stood up on his little short legs and began barking, hackles raised and eyes glued to the dark doorway. I jumped up and grabbed a bottle beside my bed that was used to hold spare change, a hefty item with a long neck that would make a formidable weapon.

When I flicked on the front room lights, I expected to find an intruder skulking about. Instead, it was empty. No one was there.

I never figured out what made the noise or got my dog so wound up. The entire time I lived in that particular house, nothing supernatural caused me any harm. But there were occasions when it felt as if I was not alone although I was; there were a few more instances of unexplained noises; and Blackie never did like passing the hallway closet.


Wodke Hawkinson is the name under which Karen Wodke and PJ Hawkinson produce their co-authored works. They have published four novels, including Tangerine, Betrayed, Zeke, and Sue, three volumes of short stories, plus several short story singles. Their books are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. You can learn more about their work by visiting their website at



Today's giveaway is courtesy of the formidable writing team of Wodke Hawkinson! There are bad boys and then there's ZEKE! Yikes!  

THREE PRINT COPIES of ZEKE are up for grabs! If you like sexual obsession on the freaky side, this'll keep you up all night and insisting on background checks on all future dates! 

To win, visit the HALLOWEENPALOOZA OFFICIAL FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE. Find the October 26th post announcing this blog and giveaway and comment "I WANT TO WIN" in that post! If you're one of the first three to do so, you win! 

Good luck to all! 


Zeke is a dark novel of sexual obsession, psychological manipulation, and looming peril.

Sue Cox is a naive college student who falls for the exciting new clerk at the local used bookstore. Captivated by Zeke’s brooding good looks and menacing but irresistible charisma, Sue capitulates to his will, leaving her wide open for exploitation. Zeke begins to exert subtle control and entices her to leave town with him. As they travel, his behavior grows more deviant and increasingly volatile.

After Sue’s car is found deserted in an outlying cemetery, the police dismiss her parents’ concerns since it appears Sue left willingly. The Coxes immediately hire William Falstaff, a small-town private investigator. He begins his inquiry with only two objectives. First, to verify that Sue’s departure is voluntary. And second, to provide her family with information on her whereabouts. A simple case. However, he soon finds himself locked into a chase to save Sue’s life. Will he find her in time or will she become another victim of a cunning sociopath?

Approx. 102,000 words. Advisory: Zeke contains sexual situations and violence. The sequel to Zeke is now available: SUE by Wodke Hawkinson


  1. Wow! Loved the summary of Thirteen Ghosts. I hadn't know the stories of each individual caged in the elaborate traps.

    And the story about living in a house with Blackie, who sensed other presences? Spooky!

  2. I also loved the back stories of each of the ghosts. That movie still creeps me out to this day. To me the exorcist is the scariest movie of all time. Probably because I totally believe in possession and ghosts. I have had personal experiences with ghosts but none of them were scary. I believe animals & small children have more encounters with ghosts because they are to young or innocent to question their existence. I couldn't watch the exorcist until I was 28 years old and then only during the daytime, not alone, and with all of the lights on. I am not ashamed to say I turned 41 last Saturday and those rules still apply when watching that movie to this day. My advice "pay attention to Blackie I believe he is sensitive to things that you can't see". At least your visitors don't seem malevolent.