17: SCARY STORIES

T. Fox Dunham & Phil Thomas dedicated this #podcast episode to the trilogy of horror anthologies that haunted & fascinated them as children: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark from author Alvin Schwartz. We’ve created a show with interviews, stories and songs about this macabre collection of folklore.

 

Based on the cover art for the upcoming Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark documentary.
Based on the cover art for the upcoming Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark documentary.

LISTEN TO EPISODE 17: SCARY STORIES:

 

We’re also ecstatic to announce that we are joining the programming at PARA X RADIO! Para X is an internet radio station that has featured #paranormal programming for the last decade. It’s a great forum to satiate all your paranormal and ghost story needs with shows from dedicate supernatural explorers from around the country. What Are You Afraid Of? is adding a new element into the show, bringing not only our paranormal journalism but also our stories, fiction, music and dark entertainment. We will still be available on all major podcast services such as iTunes, and we will debut on Saturday, September 10th at 6PM for our usual weekly time slot.

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Check out their programming at: http://www.para-x.com/

Indeed. I said weekly. Starting in September, the podcast will start doing three new episodes a month, which means more Phil & Fox banter, more guests, more stories and new features as we expand our staff and content. So spread the word! Ghouls of the night, we’re coming for you–or joining you.

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We started with a true ghost story sent to us from a C.C. in England. C.C. and her friends decided to play Seance one night and invited a guest into their home–a guest who refused to leave. Read by Jon Prive.

 

 

In honor of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, T. Fox Dunham researched two pieces of American horror folklore and re-wrote them into new stories: Don’t Sell my House & The Bloodstain, read by our voice actors and dramatized with eerie music. These are two pieces of classic American horror. They’re about the past, guilt and not being able to let go. The Bloodstain tells the tale of a party gone wrong with murder. Don’t Sell My House is the story of a widower who is not allowed to move on with his life. Both stories are classic examples of the kind of work that can be found in our subject of this episode, the infamous trilogy of collected horror folklore, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, collected and written by Alvin Schwartz.

scary-600Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is a series of three children’s books written by Alvin Schwartz and illustrated by Stephen Gammell. The titles of the books are Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (1981), More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (1984), and Scary Stories 3: More Tales to Chill Your Bones (1991). Alvin spent years collecting American horror folklore then masterfully penned them into stories that terrify and inspire. The books become iconic and controversial. The collection has been named the most challenged series of books from 1990-1999 and the seventh most challenged by the American Library Association because of the violence, dark themes and macabre illustrations, which of course make the book. America was so innocent back then. And as it is with most infamous collections, these books played a profound and founding influence on so many of us in the horror community. We all remember these books with love and a morbid fascination. They inspired T. Fox Dunham to start writing horror.

So we went to the modern expert on these books, a film maker with a history in children’s literature. Fox interviews Cody Meirick who is filming a documentary on the anthology. Cody has spent the last years indulging in his love of these books, gathering nearly thirty interviews with such notable authors as R.L. Stine to show the influence these books had on us. He shows us why these dark stories and others like them are so vital. As he says in the interview,

 

“In many cases, kid’s wouldn’t read without darker content.” – Cody Meirick

Check out the interview and learn more about the documentary at http://www.scarystoriesdoc.com/

Our beloved British folksinger, David Walton, returns to put to music one of the songs collected in the books. Known as the “Don’t Ever Laugh as the Hearse Goes By” or The Worm Song, David sings it in his usual mournful tones, bringing back to life a popular anti-war song from the last two centuries.

“Don’t you ever laugh as the hearse goes by,
For you may be the next one to die.
They wrap you up in big white sheets
and cover you from head to feet.
They put you in a big black box
And cover you with dirt and rocks.
All goes well for about a week,
Until your coffin begins to leak.
The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out,
The worms play pinochle on your snout,
They eat your eyes, they eat your nose,
They eat the jelly between your toes.
A big green worm with rolling eyes
Crawls in your stomach and out your sides.
Your stomach turns a slimy green,
And pus pours out like whipping cream.
You’ll spread it on a slice of bread,
And that’s what you eat when you are dead.”

We are expanding, growing, exploring the darkness, and we have some amazing stuff planned for our future content. During October, we will be making live appearances including readings, live recordings, storytelling sessions and even going on some ghost hunts. We’ve been out in the field, collecting new ghost stories in places like Gettysburg, Jim Thorpe and Brandywine. Everyone’s got a ghost story.

On Saturday, October 22nd, we will be recording live for an evening on horror at the Doylestown Bookstore in Bucks County PA.

Enjoy the episode and spread the word. We need your true ghost experiences. Check out our submissions guidelines and our ghost story archive, growing often. The darkness is coming for you.


Follow us on Twitter: @pfwhatafraidof

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Sponsored by Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing. http://perpetualpublishing.com/

 

Thank you to #podernfamily for all your support.


MUSIC ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS:

The Chamber – Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) – Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

B – Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) – Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Land of the Dead – Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) -Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

The Haunted Record – 2706 from Mystary & Mystary Records. Played with permission of Mystary Records. More information can be found here, and the album is available on iTunes & GooglePlay. MYSTARY RECORDS ON FACEBOOK

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