Monday, June 8, 2020

Newsletter #8: June 2020

Hello friends! The world has changed dramatically in the last six months, and in these last two weeks, with many struggles still to come and so much work still to be done. This is an important and vital time to reaffirm publicly that I stand with #BlackLivesMatter. I stand with the LGBTIQA+ communities. I stand for conservation and environmental protections, and I stand with women. I encourage you to participate in some form of activism, from having difficult conversations with friends and family, to making donations, to marching and protesting peacefully, to getting out and voting. We all have different gifts and different voices. Please follow the links provided above for some information, inspiration, and resources on how to make your gifts and your voices felt and heard.

In the middle of May, I lost my job at the Adler Planetarium after six years, along with 119 other colleagues, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, I am temporarily a full-time writer. I have found some personal solace in the time of self-quarantine and social distancing, reconnecting with myself, friends, family, and pets. I have also found myself in the privileged position of living in a comfortable and safe environment. I struggle with chronic anxiety and OCD, and the time of COVID-19 has not changed that, but living without the extra labor of having to mask it publicly has been, in its own bizarre way, a gift. 

With all of this in mind, here is what I have accomplished since my last Newsletter in December, and what lies ahead:

Recent Awards/Publications

"Farah's Ghost," Mookychick
June 2020

"In a Bar," Crêpe & Penn Issues No. 6 & 7, February/April 2020 (pg. 20)
May 2020

Third Place, Mars Category by Adult Non-Resident, Highland Park Poetry's 2020 Poetry Challenge (and Chapbook), "here among the stars"
April 2020

"Burn the Witch" and "Stellar Nebula," Stentorian Bitch February 2020
February 2020

Upcoming Publications

Temporarily out of print, a third edition of my children's book Breakfast with Bigfoot will be coming this summer from Haunted Road Media. I have also been working on a book of ghost stories about the Old Baraboo Inn in Baraboo, Wisconsin, which will be released sometime in the near future, also from Haunted Road MediaAlso, after two long years of preparation, and more than a year of searching, shopping around, and submitting various versions of the manuscript to contests, publishers, and small presses, the chapbook of poetry I have been working on, apparitions, has at last been accepted for publication! I am excited to share more details soon! And finally, the anthology about the lives and experiences of children detained at the U.S.-Mexico border has also been accepted for publication, with further details pending.

Recent Appearances

I had a packed winter of appearances before seeing most of my spring events get cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus. In television news, The R.I.P. Files has been available on Tubi TV (as of summer 2019). Here is everything else. I am particularly elated to share that all ten episodes of Spooky Story Tuesdays, which originally aired via Facebook Live, are now uploaded to my YouTube channel (see below):

The Edge of the Rabbit Hole , Ep. "Paranormal Storytelling with Author Amelia Cotter!"
May 26, 2020

The Grave Talks , Ep. "Are They Really Dead? A Conversation with Amelia Cotter"
May 26, 2020

This House: The True Story of a Girl and a Ghost Virtual Launch Party
April 14, 2020

The American Coronavirus Journal, Ep. "From Vacation to Lockdown - Amelia Cotter-Pollock in Chicago"
April 13, 2020

Spooky Story Tuesdays
March 24-May 26, 2020

The Outer Realm on 4680Q Niagara Online Radio/UPRN Talk Radio 107.7 FM New Orleans
February 12, 2020

Project PSI Radio
January 12, 2020

Astonishing Legends, Ep. "163: The Lost Christmas Eve Special" (Holiday Message)
December 23, 2019

The Paranormal Pride on WBHM-DB
December 16, 2019

Astonishing Legends, Ep. "161: The Stanley Hotel with Connor J. Randall" (Listener Segue)
December 15, 2019

Upcoming Appearances

Right now, these events are tentative as we move forward in these uncertain times. But if and when they do happen, I really look forward to seeing everyone and reconnecting with friends and fans!:

Printers Row Lit Fest with The Society of Midland Authors, Chicago
September 5, 2020

Chicago Ghost Conference at Congress Plaza Hotel, Chicago
October 16-17, 2020

"Monsters: Fact and Folklore" Presentation at The Haunted Savannah Paracon at Hotel Indigo in Savannah, Georgia
February 26-27, 2021

"Haunted Homes: Our Otherworldly Guests and Neighbors" Presentation at Haunted Road Media ParaCon at Mineral Springs in Alton, Illinois
Postponed until 2021

Thank you all for sharing in this journey with me. Everyone please be safe and well. As always, Happy Hauntings!

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Haibun #3: Hibernaculum

In the spirit of the strength and resiliency that we could all use a little more of right now:


My weapons come with me everywhere I go.
I am ready for the fight, come lightness or weight of days.

spring thaw—
the barren ground swells
beneath a billowing sky

"Hibernaculum," copyright 2020 Amelia Cotter (Black Bough Poetry Issue 1, 2019)

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

New Release: This House: The True Story of a Girl and a Ghost 10th Anniversary Edition!

Today is book day! The 10th anniversary edition of my first book, This House: The True Story of a Girl and a Ghost, is now available from Haunted Road Media!

If you're one of the many people adding books to your shelves and e-readers right now, please consider this one. It's the little piece of nostalgia "that could"a quick read for ghost story lovers and young/young adult readers (ages 9-12) that launched my writing career. The book has sold thousands of copies since it was first self-published a decade ago, and I am so proud to be working with Haunted Road Media, an excellent small press to support right nowto bring this beautiful edition to collectors and hopefully a new generation of Walter's fans.

Virtual Launch Party: I invite you to join me next Tuesday, April 14, for a special edition of Spooky Story Tuesdays at 7 p.m. | 6 p.m. CST via Facebook Live! I will read an excerpt from This House, share some other haunted house stories, show you some objects from Walter's House, and answer your questions.

How to win a signed copy: Anyone who participates in the Virtual Launch Party and leaves a comment will be entered for a chance to win a signed copy of the book! Likewise, anyone who retweets my pinned tweet on Twitter through Tuesday, April 14 will also be entered to win a signed copy of the book. Winners will be announced shortly after!

Your support is greatly appreciated. Everyone be safe and well. Thanks and Happy Hauntings!

In March 2020, I returned, for the first time in more than a decade,
to the site in Baltimore County, Maryland, where Walter's House once stood.