ByJamie A. Duncan, writer at

My earliest memory is one of abject horror.

I was four years old, in the house we lived in until I turned five.

I woke in the middle of the night and looked at my dresser, beyond the foot of my bed. There, in the mirror above it, a face loomed, staring back at me.

The face, dark with gleaming eyes, filled the large glass, floating and reaching toward my bed.

I wanted to scream. I wanted to shut my eyes. My body froze, my heart pounded, I was so panicked, I could hardly breathe.

The Nightmare promotional image
The Nightmare promotional image

All I could do was gaze into the dark man's evil eyes, waiting for him to take me. Waiting as he came closer and closer, moving silently through the darkness, never taking his eyes from mine.

What I experienced is commonly called sleep paralysis, the experience of being trapped between dreaming and waking, a terror that affects perhaps 6% of the population.

A new documentary by Rodney Ascher, The Nightmare, explores the phenomenon, and appears capable of scaring the hell out of us in the process. The "horror documentary", currently showing at the 2015 Seattle International Film Festival until June 7, showcases personal stories from people who have experienced sleep paralysis, many of whom believe they were tormented by a supernatural being. It will be available on Itunes and other platforms June 5th.

The Nightmare promotional image
The Nightmare promotional image

When they tell their stories, you want to believe them.

Let's hope this movie gets nationwide distribution in time for Halloween, I'm excited to see this in the theater, some dark and dismal night...and never may we sleep again!

And if you like what I post, maybe you'd like my other work associated with the fantasy series I'm developing, Fire of Norea, which you can find here.


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