I’ve been writing paranormal romance for over five years, but I’ve been a life-long lover of all things spooky, paranormal, and strange. My nana and I shared this love, watching A Haunting and Unsolved Mysteries and Sylvia Brown on the Montel show. In our family, there are and have been many “sensitive” or psychic people, and both of us had experienced odd things that we could only explain as paranormal, so it was logical (at least to us lol) to absorb it all. It was something we bonded over and always talked about, so I feel like some small part of me kept up with the research of strange theories and creatures for nostalgia sake, but I mostly just love freaking myself out. Throughout my research and general interest in all things strange, I’ve come across some really interesting things. Here are only five!
These are in the same realm as mermaids, only way creepier and without the singing undersea creatures. From Irish/Scottish folklore, these creatures are said to look very beautiful and seductive in their human forms. Most of the time, humans fall in love with them and wake to find them gone—their one true love is the sea. And here’s the kicker: they turn into seals in order to return to the sea. Yeah. You fell in love with a seal.
I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say that these aren’t real (bummer) but never say never when there’s paranormal business afoot. However, in my search for any selkie experiencers, I only found a letter written to the Times in 1809 where a man in Scotland said they’d seen a mermaid. Really, all of these “sightings” are described as mermaids, which I’m not totally convinced don’t exist (because c’mon!).
2. The Dybbuk Box
This is something The Shadow & Ink Series centers around and I was shocked to hear that not many people know about it. It’s actually a wine box that’s haunted by an evil spirit that can possess the living. It got its popularity when a guy posted the box on ebay, telling buyers all of the strange occurrences that had happened to him since buying the box from a Polish Holocaust survivor.
It was sealed with wax and when he pried it open, inside were two 1920s pennies, a lock of blonde hair, a lock of brown hair, a small statue engraved with the word “Shalom”, a small wine goblet, a single rose bud, and a candle holder with four octopus shaped legs. Among the strange things that happened to him after opening the box are: his mother having a stroke, nightmares involving an old hag (we’ll get to her in a minute), strange smells including cat urine and jasmine, hives, coughing up blood, and his hair falling out. Eventually, a museum director bought it from the first man and consulted with Rabbis in order to seal up the box again and then he hid it somewhere no one could find it.
3. Old Hag Syndrome
Also known as “the night hag”, this phenomenon has been recorded throughout different folklore and cultures for centuries. It’s closely tied to sleep paralysis (which I have: basically your brain wakes up before your body so you are aware of what’s going on around you and can even open your eyes and look around, but you can’t move).
People say they experience someone sitting on their chest or in the room with them, often appearing as shadows or hags: old women with long white hair. Whether this is truly paranormal or just elaborate hallucinations is the subject of much debate within the paranormal and scientific communities, but either way it sounds terrifying.
Mothman is probably one of the most popular (I mean, there’s a movie and a documentary on Netflix about him), yet still little known paranormal creature. This creature, for whatever reason, has a special place in my heart and I’ve always planned to write a story about him. He was seen from November 15, 1966 to December 15, 1967 in Point Pleasant, West Virginia.
He was reported as a huge, bird-like creature with red eyes. People who saw him reported weird sounds, their cars stalling, and weirdest of all, rashes around their eyes as if they had been burned. The largest sighting of Mothman occurred on December 15, 1967, when the Silver Bridge collapsed, killing 46 people.
There are a TON of other creepy things surrounding this mysterious figure (such as Men in Black, strange apparitions, people disappearing, and even UFOs), but I think the most disturbing is that after the collapse of the bridge, he was never seen again except for some small claims.
5. Hat Man
I actually have a personal story about Hat Man and you can actually watch me talk about it HERE.
Related to shadow people, hat man appears in silhouette, often at night or on the edge of your bed. Some people report that they can only see a wide smile, while others can’t find any distinction in the body or face. However, he is always wearing a wide brimmed hat, watching.
There are many theories as to what this figure could be. Some think he is a demon, others think he’s an omen of death, and some think he is somehow related to aliens. Shadow people are more widely known, sometimes paired with sleep paralysis and sometimes only seen in waking hours out of the corner of your eye. Some think shadow people are evil while others talk about how they had positive experiences with them, that they may only be lost spirits, but every person unlucky enough to encounter the hat man say that he has an ominous presence.
So how do you like the new creepy post series? Anything you want me to talk about/research? Let me know!