Wolf species have different howls

The University of Cambridge have published an interesting article, ‘Wolf species have “howling dialects”‘, about the different ways in which wolves vocalise their howls. It is an enlightening article that gives more depth to these fascinating creatures.

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Gothic Romance and romantic Gothic

In order to celebrate Valentine’s Day the IGA have a guest post by Val Derbyshire, ‘From Romance to romance: Gothic tropes in Harlequin Mills & Boon novels’. It’s a thoroughly enjoyable read and made me reminisce about borrowing the Mills & Boon Temptation series from my local library before I was old enough to know any better!

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Which scenes in literature have chilled you to the bone?

The Royal Society of Literature is posing the question ‘What have been your scariest reads?’ to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein. Feel free to comment below if you have any good ideas. I think mine is Dean Koontz novel.

Addendum: The Dean Koontz novel which I mentioned above was called Fear Itself  (1998). I must have read it when I was about 14 or 15 (thank you local library for letting me take out Fear_Nothinginappropriate books). It’s about government conspiracy theories and animal testing and biological warfare.  The cover of the edition which I took out was particularly memorable and gave me a nauseous headache which seemed to fit the tone of the book very well.

The scene that has stayed with me the most (though I may be misremembering it) was when a police officer, who has been exposed to the chemicals being tested, is telling the protagonist, Christopher Snow, about the side effects. One of the side effects is increasingly violent dreams that involve a young female relative. The conversation ends with the officer telling Christopher that he knows that at some point in the future he will act on his dreams. Even today it makes my stomach clench.

A more canonical Gothic text which unnerves me is ‘The Great God Pan’ (1890) by Arthur Machen. It is the perfect example of how obscurity functions in the Gothic. The entire time I was reading it I felt I was at the edge of darkness peering into the gloom filled with a sick sense of dread.

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CFP: Science Fiction Film and Television

The ‘Science Fiction Film and Television’ journal have released the following on their Facebook page:

‘Science Fiction Film and Television continues to invite submissions for upcoming issues. Preferred length for articles is approximately 7000-9000 words; all topics related to science fiction film, television, and related media will be considered. Typical response time is within three months. Check the journal website at Liverpool University Press for full guidelines for contributors; please direct any individualized queries to gerry.canavan@marquette.edu’.

More information can be found on the website at Liverpool University Press.

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‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ also in book form!

Exciting news for all Harry Potter fans, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be coming out in book form as well as being a stage play. Let us raise our wands in celebration!

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Utopianism Series

Dr. Caroline Edwards (Birkbeck University) has written about a new series on Utopianism for which she is on the editorial board. It looks timely and interesting and her blog post gives further details; it is certainly a publication that is worth looking out for!

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CFP: The Dark Arts Journal

Just a quick reminder that ‘The Dark Arts Journal’ is looking for submissions of 4,000-5,000 words on the theme ‘The Gothic and all its forms’. The deadline is 28th February 2016. And more information can be found on its website.

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CFP: BBEC Conference, University of Timișoara, Romania, 23th-25th June, 2016


I am pleased to announce that I am one of the Keynote Speakers at the Second International Conference ‘Beliefs and Behaviours in Education and Culture’ (BBEC) at the West University of Timișoara in Romania on 23th-25th June 2016. Professor Clive Bloom  will also be speaking. The call for papers is out until 1st March so there is still time to submit a proposal and join us in Romania for what promises to be a lively and pertinent few days!

The conference organiser is Dr.Marius-Mircea Crisan, who some of you may have met at the OGOM: Bram Stoker Centenary  Conference in 2012. He is the author of The Birth of the Dracula Myth: Bram Stoker’s Transylvania (2013) and was a very kind host to Kaja and I on our visit to Romania in 2015.

The aim of the conference is to explore beliefs from different perspectives and disciplines, particularly those that have a great impact upon education and culture. Topics include but are not limited to: the representation of mythical spaces in literature and the arts; Gothic and horror in contemporary entertainment media; aesthetic experience and emotional impact in relation to education, culture and belief.

Timişoara, the largest city in Western Romania, is the capital of the Timiş County, and the centre of the historical region of the Banat. Frequently referred to as “Little Vienna”, the city has a rich multicultural history, but is also an important economic modern centre. It boasts amongst its many sights this wonderful statue of Romulus and Remus suckled by a she wolf. I hope to see you there!



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CFP: Eating the Rude: Hannibal Lecter and the Fannibals, Criminals, and Legacy of America’s Favorite Cannibal

This CFP/ CFA is for an edited publication,  Eating the Rude: Hannibal Lecter and the Fannibals, Criminals and Legacy of America’s Favorite Cannibal. According to specifications: ‘Ideal proposals focusing on any aspect of Hannibal texts from any period will contain a clear thesis, an abstract which is two to three paragraphs long and a list of potential sources. Essays need to be MLA formatted – parenthetical citations, not footnotes’. Proposals and essays need to be submitted by 18th March 2016.

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Horror Scholarships

Applications have opened for five Horror Scholarships from the Horror Writers Association. The scholarships are: the Horror Writers Association Scholarship; the Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Scholarship; the Dark Poetry Scholarship; the Rocky Wood Memorial Scholarship for Non-fiction; and, the Scholarship from Hell (for StokerCon). Good luck with your applications!


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