Author: S. Gepp

10 Public Domain Characters Some-one Could Seriously Consider

One Pirate Skull with a Red Eye and a Patch

The legalities of copyright law are dangerous, strange, fraught with danger, confusing and have an element of danger about them. They differ from country to country and have been made a mockery of by the Disney Corporation who have decided they want to own everything everywhere and do not care about anything not Disney until they own that, too.


See, originally, copyright was limited. People were encouraged to take the characters and extend their adventures, and after only a few years, they could. But with the process of re-sales and seeing some classic writers die poor, things were made a little more favourable to them. Now things are made favourable to the evil Mouse. However, there are some things even Disney does not own.


See, there is still a thing called Public Domain. Old characters can still be used in some cases. Now, of course, there are some that are logical – anything from mythology, from religion, from folklore (like Robin Hood or King Arthur and all those entail), and anything Shakespeare. Just don’t copy the way things have been done by others (if original) and you’ll be fine. Even fairy-tales are fine (just don’t use anything developed by Disney for their properties; if Disney stole it from the Brothers Grimm, then it’s fair claim). And some others have been used often – Jekyll & Hyde, Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, the Invisible Man. All of these are Public Domain.


So, here is a list of some little known or maybe forgotten Public Domain characters that could be used for stories by today’s writers!


Now, going off-track (again) for a second. Fan-fiction is not what this is about. I am in two minds about Fanfic – I can see how it can help authors develop their craft in the early stages of learning, or just having fun; however, part of being a writer is developing characters and settings and doing the work involved there. I will leave that there, as I copped some serious abuse on the NaNoWriMo forum when I dared say I felt Fanfic was maybe not the best writing. And, to be honest, I have not read any Fanfic that improves the original. You might have. Your call.


1) Rip Van Winkle
Who? Washington Irving’s sleeper who wakes up and finds that the world has changed.
And? Use it again, have him wake up now. Standard fish out of water tale, sure, but could be a great basis for looking at how the modern world really does suck in so many ways… and also how things have improved. Using RVW automatically gives the reader a point of reference.


2) Dr Moreau
Who? HG Wells’ beast-man creating doctor, on an island somewhere.
And? With modern technology, DNA splicing, cloning, all that jazz, surely an update of Dr Moreau is just crying out to be written. And ignore the films – in the book the beast-men overthrow Moreau half-way through and then their so-called civilisation degenerates into anarchy and chaos, showing their animals sides. That’s the bit ignored and forgotten, and could really be played with, I think.


3) Robinson Crusoe
Who? Defoe’s island marooned sailor who somehow survives with a racially disturbing stereotype.
And? Ignore Friday, and put Crusoe anywhere else and you could have an interesting look at how modern man copes in the world. Robinson Crusoe On Mars did this; Castaway was arguably a version as well. But that does not mean it could not be used again. Or reversed – an alien marooned on Earth? Yes, E.T. was a role-reversal Robinson Crusoe story.


4) Professor Challenger
Who? Doyle’s hot-headed, fearless scientist-explorer (quite different to his Sherlock Holmes), who first appeared in The Lost World.
And? Professor Challenger was such a more relatable character than Holmes. Everyone must have met some-one like Challenger, driven by ego, doing crazy things, but somehow always coming out okay. Imagine him as a space explorer, or deep-sea diver. He is perfect for a ready-made explorer.


5) Allan Quartermain
Who? Haggard’s precursor to Indiana Jones.
And? I am an unabashed fan of H. Rider Haggard, and I enjoy the Quartermain series (though She is my favourite, a non-Quartermain tale), and think that if some-one wanted to write an Indiana Jones story without all the Fanfic headaches of copyright, then Quartermain is the go-to character to use.


6) Carnacki, The Ghost Finder
Who? Hodgson’s pre-modern technology Ghostbuster, the supernatural answer to Sherlock Holmes.
And? Well, it’s ghost-busting steampunk! He used strange devices to help his investigations and capture the ghosts all before nuclear reactor backpacks. In fact, the whole Ghostbusters franchise could well be said to be an update of Carnacki. But with steam-punk all the rage, why not just take Carnacki and up the inventiveness and go for broke!


7) Sheena
Who? A female Tarzan, but brought up by the male witch-doctor who killed her father (or the daughter of dead missionaries brought up by a female witch-doctor; yes, two origin stories).
And? A female Tarzan? Well, technically, Tarzan is also Public Domain, but he’s been done to death, so why not go for the female counterpart, the first female character to have her own comic book. She was so important in the old days of comics and now is all but forgotten. She would be a great character to bring back, examining gender politics though a female without gender politics. (In the same vein, you could also consider Judy of the Jungle…)


8) Kit West
Who? Female comic book cowboy, one of the best horse-women of the West.
And? The world is just crying out for a decent female Western character. So many have failed to hit the mark when they’ve been bothered to be used at all. If they want to bring back the Western and do it in the same way they brought back Ghostbusters, but hopefully with a better script (the film really was not that bad), then why not bring back Kit West?


9) Blackbeard
Who? An English pirate who was renowned for his viciousness and cruelty.
And? So, you want to write a Pirates of the Caribbean Fanfic, but those pesky copyright laws get in the way. Why not take a real live pirate person and make up some adventures for them? He was active from the late 17th to early 18th centuries. But did he really die? There’s your story!


10) Miss Fury
Who? A female superhero, who becomes a killed acrobatic crime-fighter when she wears a magic black panther skin.
And? Superhero films/ books/ comics are all the rage now and look like remaining all the rage in the foreseeable future. Who wouldn’t want to join in? Well, with Miss Fury, you get a gorgeous woman, a superhero and skin-tight clothing all in one. So why not go for it?


[I have had a story published featuring a Public Domain character called Tabu, written for a book called Pulpsploitation. I transferred him through magic from Africa to modern America, made him a professional wrestler and had him fight the Russian mafia. It’s fun!]


There you have it – ten characters from the old days of literature, comics and reality that could well be used in modern stories through the joys that are Public Domain! There are, of course, many more, but these are just some of the ones I have read comics or books concerning, so know a little bit about. There’s lists on the Internet, so go for it.


Happy writing!



10 Under-Utilised Horror Settings

It’s the Gothic mentality that still permeates horror fiction. The dark castles, the grave-yards, the small country towns, the old churches, the old deserted houses, even the cellars (some great places to use a Spirit Box) – it’s all there. Always all there. The settings for the standard horror stories.


Look, I’m a reader and a writer, and I understand the sense of isolation that can increase tension and terror, and the darkness is something that makes horror work because the hidden is often more terrifying. There is something to be said for the imagination of the reader/viewer being allowed to have a go. I think that’s why a lot of horror does not translate well from book to screen – what they create visually often does not match what we have created in our own minds. And I’m going off track.


The point I’m trying to make is that we see these settings and we know we need to be ready for jump scares and clichés and the old-fashioned tropes. And that’s fine; it works and the reader knows what to expect. But in my reading, I feel there are some other settings that are not used anywhere near enough and yet could well be used to create a gripping horror story. In my opinion.


Here’s ten I think should be looked at more closely.


1) Schools
Now, what I mean here is a regular school. Stephen King’s recent The Institue ( is about a special school that is more a concentration camp, but what I am talking about is a real school. The Treehouse Of Horror series from The Simpsons may have reduced this idea to a concept of fun, but I feel there is still great value in a school. And not a deserted school, but an operational school with real people and students and teachers and administration staff and custodial staff and all that goes along with that. There is a myriad of possibilities there. And if you don’t think schools are scary places – ask any kid about that…
(Note: I did sell a ghost story set in a school a few years ago, so this is a possibility.)


2) Suburbia
Take a standard Australian soap opera – Neighbours or Home And Away for example –and you have suburbia in all its dull, tedious, banal boredom. Boring normal people doing boring normal things, just amped up to make it vaguely interesting for people with nothing better to do. However, how hard would it be to tweak that to make it the setting for a good horror story? I don’t mean a done-to-death zombie flick but something more insidious. We’ve seen it a few times – Invasion Of The Body Snatchers for one, Stepford Wives for another – but nowhere near enough. A normal suburb with normal housing (no deserted old house on the hill tropes) surely has great possibilities for horror beyond replacing people.


3) Seats of Power
Some would say that looking at the current crop of world leaders that maybe horror has infiltrated the seats of power in real life, but we read horror to escape, and so we could surely up the ante in these places. Not necessarily those in power – who are, after all, just puppets, if the brilliant BBC series Yes, Minister and Yes, Prime Minister are anything to go by (and they are) – but those bureaucrats pulling the strings. The horror could possibly be an all-encompassing “devil in charge” tale to a strange creature using politicians to get access to victims. And, really, who wouldn’t be scared when faced with mind-numbingly brainless politicians zombies slaves to aliens ruling the world?


4) Factories
The nooks and crannies and machinery make a factory the ideal setting for strange goings-on and evil to lurk. We’ve seen it in the beginning/end of The Fly and there’s a scene in one the Hulk movies and the ending of Terminator 2 set in factories, but these are really just scenes. A whole factory with workers and functioning machines could be an ideal setting for a creepy horror film. There is so much darkness, with all those nooks and crannies and hidden places, that this could be a great setting for a swarm of rat-like creatures to run amok. Or people to merge with their machines. Or… look, there are a heap of possibilities. And I’m not going to give away all my ideas…


5) Shopping Malls
Sure, Dawn Of The Dead was set in a shopping mall, but that was a deserted one, post-zombie-apocalypse. For an idea of how a shopping centre could be used in all its glory, see the car chase scene from The Blues Brothers and nod and smile. Now, take away the cars and replace with, say, a werewolf (An American Werewolf In London style of huge animal, not a wolfman) and let the horror and fun begin! You have so many different shops, so many hiding places, so many potential victims, so many other things that could go awry in these places!
(Note: I did sell a story last year about a hungry escalator in a shopping mall, so this is also a definite concept.)


6) High Rise Apartments
We’ve had suburbia, so how about a different sort of living space? The high-prise apartment block, many storeys high and filled with different rooms and different people living in them and different levels… Again, it lends itself so well to a nice open-ended world in just one place. Again, not a deserted one, but one where normal people live and work and play. Rosemary’s Baby was set in a similar place, but there are so many more ideas than just a cabal of Satanists bringing forth the anti-Christ into the world. I’m surprised it hasn’t been used more often, to be honest.


7) Pubs, Hotels, Bars and/or Nightclubs
Drinking establishments. Places where people go to get drunk, to catch up, to unwind and be with like-minded people. Yes, there have been vampire books with nightclub settings (e.g. Robin Baker’s Chasing The Sun) but let’s get away from vampires and look at something a little different. Pubs are a great place to set all sorts of things. FAQ About Time Travel is an awesome sci-fi comedy set in a pub; The World’s End is a great sci-fi apocalyptic comedy. What about real horror, though? Surely, we can find something out there that works because pubs can be quite disturbing places. Think about it – a nightclub which is actually a level of hell where people are forced to dance for eternity… and that’s off the top of my head.
(Note: I have sold a story about a barman that kills certain individuals, so this has selling potential.)


8) Beaches
Not out in the water, like Jaws and its sequels, but the actual beach. Sure, the 1980s gave us Blood Beach (a ‘so bad it’s good’ film) but if we take that as a precursor to some more interesting horror concepts (though the idea of a beach that eats people is awesome) then the beach can become a scary place. It might look idyllic, but go to an Australian beach when it’s forty-plus degrees Celsius (104°F) – which is quite common – and tell me that despite the clear blue skies and golden sands and wonderful ocean you don’t feel like you’re dying. Monsters, people, sands – there are so many things we could worry about in an Australian summer. Or a Hawaiian summer. Or a Californian summer…


9) Art Galleries
Museums have been done, although I am yet to see a good one (except maybe some of the Wax Museum films… and Stiller’s Night At The Museum is not a good one), but what about the art gallery? Pictures, sculptures, installations – you name it, there is everything there for a decent horror yarn. Statues that come to life, paintings that trap people, installations that draw people in – these are all tales that have been mentioned in passing or used as part of a greater story, but to bring these aspects out on their own could make a really decent little horror story.


10) Brothels
Now, I do not watch pornography – never have doubt I ever will. Just does not do anything for me, I’m afraid. And this means I do not know if any porn horror films set in brothels have been made. However, for a mainstream horror tale, the setting could be ideal. I have seen some horror comics with a tale in a brothel – all involving vampires, I’m afraid – but surely it could be so much more than that? There are endless possibilities in an establishment that exists slightly outside the law, and so could be forced to deal with its horrors in-house. Whatever those horrors may be.
(Note: I have sold a story about a ghost brothel, so this is yet another idea with distinct possibilities.)


Of course, I am the first to admit I have not seen or read everything to do with horror, so there could well be some fine examples set in these places. But for writers looking for somewhere different, looking to avoid the clichés of writing, looking to expand themselves, these ten settings could well lend themselves to all sorts of wonderful tales.


Good writing!

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10 Mistakes Made By Fantasy Writers

illustration painting of king walking through sea beach next to fantasy castle in background

I read a lot. A real lot. I also write a lot. A real lot. This is because, even before I read On Writing, I tended to live by the dictum that a writer needs to read a lot.


Quiet aside: I know some writers poo-poo this idea. But I have never met a real writer who has not read, and not a good one who has read a lot. A writer who doesn’t read is like a musician who doesn’t listen to music. It makes zero sense. Sorry.


I’d say that is the end of an old man rant, but this is that sort of a column, I’m afraid. Prepare for further rantage!


Anyway, my preferred genres are horror, fantasy, science fiction and humour, to read and write, but I don’t limit myself. However, they are preferred. And that means I read them most of all. Well, fantasy is incredibly popular nowadays, and I have read so much fantasy I sometimes wake up wondering where my pet dragon is and why my armour looks strangely like a dressing gown. And what this means is that I have come across some things that just do not make sense.


I’d like to point out that this covers every level of publication, from self-published writers who don’t believe in spelling or punctuation to stories produced by the big four publishing houses. These mistakes seem to be there all the time.


1) Information Overload
The writer has spent weeks, maybe months, creating this world of theirs in which to set their fantasy story, doing countless hours of research and developing what they consider a fully functioning society. It is a masterwork all its own. And – daggnabbit! – they are going to tell the reader every single aspect they have developed, no matter how irrelevant to the story it is, to prove they’ve world built. The reader does not need it; save it for the sequel. Or just be happy in the knowledge you’ve done the hard yards. But maybe leave it at that, hmm?


2) Food Production
It’s a world. It’s populated, normally by creatures that might as well be called humans. They need to get energy. They need to eat. Now take a look at a map of our world before World War I and see how much of the land was given over to farming – agriculture and stock. Add into that the fishing industries and you can see how vital the food industries are to non-technological worlds. And yet so often in fantasy stories there are either no farms or they are tiny, food production and movement does not seem to come into things and you wonder why the rich minstrels don’t release their own ‘Feed The World’ charity song. Or else they are hunter-gatherers. And how long would an over-populated world last as they hunt everything into extinction and decimate all vegetation for a 1000-mile radius?


3) Clothing And Armour
I have a friend who is also a writer, but her university degree was Medieval society. She did her thesis on clothing of the Medieval era. That seems to be the sort of time stories reflect. Guess what? The general, run-of-the-mill bonded populace did not wear pants. They wore smocks made of cheap linen. Rich people might have worn pants, maybe. Getting clothes made was apparently quite expensive; to cut a hole in a piece of linen was easy. And form-hugging spandex like Robin Hood or Conan the Barbarian – forget it. And armour was really expensive! It took months to make a suit of chain mail. Leather armour or padded armour were the cheap options, but even they cost a lot. Did you know that leather workers had to supply their own urine, relieving themselves on the skins they were preparing? Sorry. Just another clothing aside. And armour was generally made for the owner; putting some-one else’s on was just really challenging. There’s a reason the Vikings wore bear-skin cloaks – it was all they had!


4) Money v Bartering
I blame Dungeons And Dragons for this, with their copper, silver, gold, etc. coins. That was for ease of game play. But in real life, bartering was the most common means of paying for goods or services. Sure, rich people might have coins – in general, they had serfs do everything for them anyway – but the general populace would struggle. Bartering was far more common amongst the people, but you just do not read about it. And that brings us to…


5) Rich v Poor
In most fantasy worlds, it seems like nothing for the poor born child to go off and seek adventure and fortune and become wonderful and great. But the poor were generally bonded into servitude. The owner of the land would not be overly pleased to find a person capable of working had just hopped it. In fact, I would guess he would be rather miffed and might take it out on said adventurer’s family. A lot. Oh, and the poor could not read. There was no reason to. And that little nerd who sat down hidden under his fur bedclothes reading some long-forgotten tome: No way. Not even the village “wise-men” could read. It was all oral tradition stuff. And don’t get me started on schools…


6) Magic Limitations
You have a fantasy world. There is magic in this world. How powerful is it? Why can it kill an enemy on page four but not even disable the bad guy’s henchmen on page 172? (I hope the author in question reads this… she’ll know…) The world of Harry Potter does this. There are inconsistencies in the potency of the magic. This is something Dungeons And Dragons (the old versions, anyway) does well – the limitations are spelt out quite clearly. Maybe writers should do their own Tome of Spells? And then Harry Potter himself can ride a broomstick and summon a griffon, but can’t fix his poor eyesight? And that leads to…


7) Overuse Of Magic
Your world has magic. Awesome! It’s everywhere! Awe… shit. This does two things. First, it takes away the mystique of magic. Second, it makes magic no more than their pseudo-science. If everyone has access to magic, then magic is just another part of the world and it does mean everyone should have access to it. And learn it. And study it. But, as I said in Rich v Poor above, the poor don’t have access to reading or learning. Unless the world is a lot like ours. And that has only come about because of democracies becoming powerful. In any other form of government, the powerful and those in charge would not allow the poor to have learning. And they especially would not like magic to be so readily available. It’s a matter of keeping power.


8) Religion
Religion was actually the central focus of a lot of pre-Industrial society. Even kings and other rulers bowed to the whims of their deities. (Some exceptions, of course, but even Genghis Khan worshipped his father.) And yet in fantasy, religion is given short shrift. There should be feast days and temple days and, for the poor at least, compulsory worship days. I have read some books where they claim their worlds are atheistic, but it does not make sense. Even in our world, the rules that became adapted into the Old Testament were created by a Babylonian god-king. Now, look, I am an atheist, but even my fantasy world is based on a strong religious base. It’s just there, okay?


9) Distances Travelled
Your hero has set out on foot. He has to get to the Castle of Ne’yagh within the week. Virtually unencumbered, and assuming he has had some training, he could walk, maybe 25 miles a day, and keep this up for eight days. That’s 200 miles. Where I live, if you left from the capital, that won’t even get you out of the state! Okay, give them a horse. Carrying a person, a fit horse could go as far as 50 miles a day, with a rest day every so often. Now, horses are worth a lot and so you wouldn’t want to ride one to death; just stealing one is going to get you executed. So, in 8 days (with one day of rest) that’s 350 miles. You’ve just left my state. Going four hundred leagues on a non-magical horse in a week is… stupid. Impossible! I mean impossible.


10) Sequels
Writers, you do know that it’s okay to write a stand-alone book, don’t you? And not book one in a trilogy, that is the first in a trilogy of trilogies? I blame Wheel Of Time and Game Of Thrones for this. Even Harry Potter was seven books long! Standalone books are quite okay! Really!


So, some pet peeves from reading way too much fantasy and getting way too frustrated by make-believe things created by other people.

Top 10 Mythical Creatures That Deserve Their Own Books Or Films

Creatures, monsters, animals – they have been the staple of horror fiction since the first tales of the supernatural were written down. But we always seem to see the same old familiar faces – the vampires, the werewolves, the animals grown to excessive size, the golems or man-made creatures, the zombies. It’s getting so that you see what the creature is and you know what sort of a story you’re going to get, probably even guess the ending within a few chapters (unless you’re reading one of those written-for-teenaged-girls stories where monsters are made romantic figures… bleh).


So maybe it’s about time we had some new kids on the block. Here, then, are a bunch of mythical or legendary creatures that would make pretty awesome bad guys in books/films/TV series/whatevers.


1) Basilisk
What is it?
In Greek mythology, it started off being described as a snake with a crown-like growth on its head that was not only venomous but also secreted venom from its skin. Over time the legend grew so that its very smell was poisonous, and then it was given the wings of a bat, the ability to breathe fire and had a gaze that could kill.
Why would it be a great story? How in the hell would you kill it? This would be an awesome tale of trying to escape and avoid the monster. A good writer could probably work all sorts of elements into the story to make it intriguing, but this is one creature you might even have to scale back a bit in order to make it work.


2) Bunyip
What is it?
A legendary water creature spoken of by the Indigenous Australians and adopted by the first settlers. Said to be a huge monster that can engulf humans whole, it could very well have been an oral tradition of the ancient megafauna Diprotodonts that lived when the first arrivals came to Australia thousands of years before.
Why would it be a great story? Think about it – Jaws in a river. But this one can also go onto land. Huge, just eating and attacking everything in its path. Tough hide, so maybe bullets can’t even stop it. Or just so big that a lot of bullets would be needed. (Admission: one of my own unpublished novels features a Bunyip, but it was rejected by 2 publishers for being too “Australian”… and don’t get me started on Australian publishers and genre fiction…)


3) Chimaera
What is it?
Classical ancient Greek monster. A lion with the wings of a bat, a tail that is a serpent and a goat’s head coming from the middle of its back, able to breath fire, with a hide tough enough to be impervious to anything.
Why would it be a great story? This is the epitome of the incredible creature. It took a man on a flying horse being extremely clever with lead to kill it. Maybe it comes back and it has learnt not to let anything go into its mouth, or it’s developed the ability to digest metal… now what? Pretty incredible creature to let loose on a city somewhere.


4) Eloko
What is it?
In the legends of some tribes from what is now Zaire, this creature (plural is Biloko) is described as a short-statured humanoid with the head of a crocodile., But, like a snake, it could distend its lower jaw and swallow and man whole.
Why would it be a great story? A tribe of these little beasts being found, discovering modern civilisation and just running amok, eating everyone they can – tell me that wouldn’t be an awesome story! Sure, they might be easy to kill, but their appearance and numbers could work in their advantage, they could hide in sewers, they could do so much.


5) Penanggalon
What is it?
Well, sort of a Malaysian vampire, really. Except that it doesn’t turn into a bat… It is a beautiful woman who detaches her head from her body, trailing innards beneath her, using her hair like wings to fly. She then sucks blood.
Why would it be a great story? A beautiful woman’s head dripping with gore? This is just calling out for some disgustingly spatter-fest-style movie. The blood, the guts (literally), the death, the carnage. The only way to kill one is to destroy the body while the head is out. Transport it to a big city and let it run riot.


6) Pongo
What is it?
Despite the rather cute name, this was a medieval sea creature that was said to live off the coasts of Sicily. It was a mixture of tiger and shark and would basically come onto land and eat people.
Why would it make a great story? Come on, if Sharktopus can get three films, a tiger and a shark together surely should get at least one. All teeth and legs and fur and stripes and eating, always the eating. In the original myth, three brothers killed it; the story could actually involve it being killed in three different places at once, so making it not an easy kill.


7) Spring-Heeled Jack
What is it?
It’s London, 1837, and there appeared a strange caped man who could leap incredible distances, with claws for hands and glowing red eyes. In the 1980s, he was still reported, not only in Britain and Scotland but also in the USA
Why would it make a great story? A man who can jump like that? A supervillain without the superheroes to stop him. No-one knows why he disappeared in the first place, or what he did, but an enterprising writer could, I am sure, come up with something that was not only credible but also scary. It’d be some sort of bizarre anti-hero story, I am sure.


8) Stymphalian Bird
What is it?
Faced by Herakles and Jason (although called Arean Birds in that myth) in ancient Greek legends, these were birds that had metallic feathers which they could fire like arrows. They also ate flesh. And they also like human flesh.
Why would it make a great story? Think tacky Syfy original film, set them loose on a beach filled with nubile young things and impossibly abdominaled males, and you have enough death, carnage and destruction to sate even the most blood-lusty viewer. They would do things by sheer weight of numbers and attacking from up on high. They could bring down helicopters and planes and probably sink ships They can be killed, but that takes a lot of work and man-power. Great film, and it opens for plenty of sequels.


9) Tarasque
What is it?
This is an incredibly well-known creature, but it just has not been used. It was huge, with the head of a lion, six legs, a bear’s claws and a tortoise shell covered in sharp spikes. Its body was scaled, its teeth were like swords and it had a long, snake-like, prehensile tail. It was also amphibious. Hey, some artists decided that wasn’t enough and so they gave it wings as well. Oh, and it was impervious to all weapons.
Why would it make a great story? Read that description! Come on, put that image on a poster and – bang! – instant sales. It was killed by a female Christian pilgrim, but that doesn’t matter – a good writer can surely come up with something workable.


10) Wi-lo-gi-yuk
What is it?
According to Inuit legend, this was a small mammal that would bite any exposed skin of any animal. But its bite had an anaesthetising effect, so the creature would not feel it burrow inside its victim and feed on it from the inside.
Why would it make a great story? This is just crying out to be a medical drama with a weird horror twist. Imagine the doctor (probably played by Sandra Bullock) trying to convince her superiors that a flesh-eating rat was killing people, and then they get loose in the hospital? Man, this stuff writes itself!


And there you have it – 10 mythical and legendary creatures that would surely make great monsters in films and/or books. Oh, and while I’m at it, not the Bonnacon. A huge bull that uses its self-igniting dung to attack people… I do not want to see that…