Posts Tagged ‘Christmas Spirits’


If you’ve had enough of the teen-aged, puppy-eyed, lovesick hounds with hearts of gold… if you like your werewolves with some bite, join us tonight at Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE! where we’ll be talking to werewolf horror author, W.D. Gagliani. Listen in for your chance to win a signed copy of the book of your choice from the Nick Lupo series.


W.D. Gagliani is the author of the novels Wolf’s Trap, Wolf’s Gambit, Wolf’s Bluff, Wolf’s Edge, Wolf’s Cut, Wolf’s Blind (upcoming), and Savage Nights. Wolf’s Trap was a finalist for the Bram Stoker Award in 2004. He has published fiction and nonfiction in numerous anthologies and publications such as Robert Bloch’s Psychos, Undead Tales, More Monsters From Memphis, The Midnighters Club. His book reviews and nonfiction have been included in, among others, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Chizine, HorrorWorld, Cemetery Dance, Hellnotes, Science Fiction Chronicle, The Scream Factory, The Writer magazine, and the books Thrillers: 100 Must Reads, They Bite, and On Writing Horror.


The team of Gagliani & Benton has published fiction in venues such as the upcoming X-Files anthology edited by Jonathan Maberry, SNAFU: An Anthology of Military Horror, SNAFU: Wolves at the Door, Dark Passions: Hot Blood 13, Zippered Flesh 2, Masters of Unreality (Germany), Malpractice: An Anthology of Bedside Terror, Splatterpunk Zine, and Dead Lines, along with the Kindle Worlds Vampire Diaries tie-in “Voracious in Vegas.” Some of their collaborations are available in the collection Mysteries & Mayhem.


Also, be sure to check out our novella, Christmas Spirits, which can be read as a stand-alone or as the fourth installment of the Ghosts of Ravencrest serial novel.

In The Ghosts of Ravencrest, Tamara Thorne and Alistair Cross have created a world that is dark, opulent, and smoldering with the promise of scares and seduction. You’ll be able to feel the slide of the satin sheets, taste the fizz of champagne, and hear the footsteps on the stairs.”

-Sylvia Shults, paranormal expert and author of Fractured Spirits

Christmas Spirits is available now!


You know what our favorite thing about Christmas is? TV of course!! And ghost stories.

Ghosts and Christmas go together like weenies and beans. Soap and towels. Cat pee and Grandma. Brain-death and DirectTV. Puberty and shame. Prom and a bucket of blood.


Christmas is tied to ghosts almost as strongly as Halloween, thanks only in part to Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Christmas arrives as the year dies. Morning arrives late, night falls early, life is at its lowest ebb… as are our attention spans and tolerance for long-winded, meandering stories about the human heart’s capacity for love, forgiveness, and kindness. And for this utter lack of patience, we blame Charles Dickens. Thanks, Chuck!

But imagine it’s just a century or two ago, and you’re sitting by the hearth on a cold winter’s night, the only illumination coming from the the fire, the lanterns,  candles and the monks sitting in the corner doing their fancy parchment work. In those days, you couldn’t get away from those pesky light-bearing monks and their gold ink. In fact, that’s why, to this day, a group of the little bald-headed fellows is referred to as an “infestation of monks.”

And if you were insane, of course, you had candlelight from your Christmas tree. Fire insurance must have been outrageously expensive back then. Instead of checking to see if you qualify for safe driver bonuses, they would have checked to see how many houses you’ve burned down in the past five years. It’s pretty ridiculous that OSHA didn’t step in, really, but who are we to judge?


Anyway, we take light for granted. In 1788 London, where our Ravencrest holiday tale is set, there was no electricity for light and heat. There was only candle and lantern light besides the hearth and, of course, the glow of your own healthy skin, which was obtained because there was no Burger King and you had no choice but to eat your fresh fruits and vegetables, of which there were none, since it was winter; the gas lamp was around the corner, but it would be decades before many houses had this luxury. And microwaves. And hot rollers. These things came much later.

Imagine the dark, whether in a city, the countryside, or within the syphilis-soaked confines of the local opium den-turned-cathouse. There were orders for every house facing the street to put out at least one lantern from 6 pm to 11 pm to illuminate the way for passersby – you were fined a shilling if you didn’t comply. That was almost the same cost as a reasonably-priced hooker with the majority of her teeth! And inside the house, there was never enough light to illuminate the dark corners where ghosts hide.


And there were ghosts everywhere. Seriously. In fact, every time you sneezed, it meant there was a ghost nearby, hence the expression, Bless You. In those days there were no television psychics to help our loved ones into the light, so it wasn’t uncommon to find misguided phantoms tangled in your hair, wandering aimlessly through your outhouses, inadvertently devouring your child’s soul, or even getting stuck betwixt your teeth after breast-stroking through your porridge. And this is why Goldilocks had to go for a walk that fateful day. Ghosts hate really hot porridge.

And speaking of hot porridge, we have compiled a list of our favorite Christmas ghosts on television because we feel very strongly that ghosts on television are taken for granted these days.


Imagine the 1700s, when all you got were 12 basic channels and every single one of them was just another live broadcast chronicling the various stages of construction of Marie Antoinette’s latest obnoxious hairstyle. And if you didn’t want to see her hair in that particular phase of styling, you had to physically bitch and ring a bell in your maidservant’s general direction to get her to change the channel. Seriously. Times were hard. But now, since television is less of a hassle to watch and has gone on to invade every single possible fucking aspect of our lives, up to and including the most sacred of holidays, here is our list. Do take take note that we’ve only included what we, as horror writers, enjoy. You will find very little in the way of warm fuzziness here. Yeah, baby. Let’s get on with this. We’ll mark our favorites with a star. Like this* And we will bold it, too. Like this. Except it will be italicized. Like this.


SUPERNATURAL (Netflix Streaming)

*A Very Supernatural Christmas (Season 3, Episode 8)

(This episode is contains pure horror satisfaction – and a lot of blood)


THE X-FILES  (Netflix Streaming)

*How the Ghosts Stole Christmas, Season 6 Episode 6

(A modern classic.)

Family Guy

FAMILY GUY (Netflix Streaming)

A Very Special Family Guy Freakin’ Christmas

*Road to the North Pole

Jesus, Mary & Joseph

Christmas Guy



Amends: Season 3, Episode 10 Amends (15 Dec. 1998)


SOUTH PARK (Available Free on-line)
*Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo

It’s Christmas in Canada

Starvin Marvin in Space

Red Sleigh Down

Woodland Critter Christmas Season

Mr. Hankey’s Christmas Classics

Merry Christmas Charlie Manson

A Very Crappy Christmas Season


BOB’S BURGERS (Netflix Streaming)

God Rest Ye Merry Gentle-Mannequins

Christmas in the Car

Bob’s Burgers: Father of the Bob


AMERICAN DAD (Netflix Streaming)

The Best Christmas Story Never Told

The Most Adequate Christmas Ever

Rapture’s Delight

For Whom the Sleigh Bell Tolls

American Dad!: Season’s Beatings

*Minstrel Krampus

The Polarizing Express (2010)


Eureka (Netflix Streaming)

*O Little Town

*Do You See What I See?


Warehouse 13 (Netflix Streaming)

*Seasons of Belief

*The Yattering and Jack



Let Your Hair Down

Twelve Days of Krampus

The Grimm Who Stole Christmas



Seasons of Belief

The Yattering and Jack


THE COSBY SHOW (pure horror!)

Getting to Know You

Clair’s Place

Christmas Spirits… coming soon…


Winter, 1788, the festival on the frozen Thames River.

Baronet Edward Manning and Lady Alice have brought their children, Prudence and Parnell, to London to enjoy the Frost Fair and visit their uncle, Sir Thomas. When tragedy strikes, the Mannings return to Ravencrest where the family doctor can see to their injured son. But no matter what Dr. Lanval does, the young master’s health continues to decline, and soon, the doctor begins to suspect darker forces are at work. Arcane forces.

When a hex bag is discovered under his patient’s bed, Dr. Lanval and Sir Thomas set out on a race against time to catch the spellcaster and try to save Parnell. As Christmas Eve approaches, things have improved and the Manning’s begin their celebrations. Father Christmas arrives… but on his heels comes a new kind of darkness that will forever cast its ominous shadow over the Mannings; a curse powerful enough to span generations… and continents.

For centuries the walls of Ravencrest have been soaked in blood and corruption. And now a new evil has spread its black roots into the very foundations of the manor… and into the Manning bloodline.

The fourth episode of The Ghosts of Ravencrest: Christmas Spirits will be available in early December. The first three installments are available now in an omnibus form titled Darker Shadows, at Amazon.