Sunday, January 21, 2024

2023 in review - a personal note

Hi everyone!

Wow, I started out 2023 with a resolution to revitalize my blog, but man -- I did not foresee what the year was going to bring.  Health problems decimated the bulk of the year, overlapped by business struggles, and worst of all, my mother's illness and death.  I will not miss 2023 -- so long!  I'm glad to try starting out fresh again in January 2024.

Because I had so much bad news last year, I didn't share a huge amount on here, but that doesn't mean I wasn't working away on Strange Maine things in the background.

Bigfoot in Maine -- I continued recording eyewitness accounts for Volume 2, and even managed a few field trips here and there (but never enough!) with some very good friends.  These accounts are all over the state, some tying in with eyewitness accounts from Bigfoot in Maine (v1), and some filling in blank spaces on the map where I hadn't been yet.  Most of the field trips were in York County - I hope to get into Western Maine and up north a bit sometime in 2024.

To start off 2024 on a high note, in Episode #244 (1/8/2024) of Bigfoot and Beyond with Cliff and Bobo, Cliff interviewed Aleks Petakov of Small Town Monsters, and he gave my book a terrific shoutout!  Aleks is an ace in the New England Bigfoot field investigation pantheon.  If you have a New Hampshire eyewitness report you'd like to file, he's your guy.

You can listen to that episode and others here:

Or find Aleksander's email and other info on his website here:

More research and site visits are planned for 2024, not to mention a talk at the upcoming International Cryptozoology Conference where you'll get the first preview of some of these cases.

Tickets/details here:

A nice pairing - Nov 2023
Strange Maine - I collaborated with Kristen Seavey, who runs the excellent Murder She Told true crime podcast (which I highly recommend if you haven't checked it out yet!).  In addition to suggesting her Tot Harriman episode, in late 2022 I handed over my archive of articles and research about the unsolved Dennis Down homicide (Falmouth, 1958) to Kristen, and in October 2023 she aired the episode after adding her own substantial research efforts and fleshing out the story for her listeners.  

I still hope someday this one can be solved, I find it quite haunting, especially because it disappeared - I discovered it wasn't even listed on the register of Maine's unsolved cases when I was digging around after it.

You can listen to it here or on the podcast app of your choice:

I also continued to set aside some Maine stories of hauntings, which will eventually become a book in its own right.

In December I had an opportunity to meet some Maine legends, author Carolyn Chute and her husband Michael Chute (and their dog Jake!).  Amazing!  I look forward to many future conversations with them. 

Other projects:  I am continuing to work on a biography of a Mainer who is unknown to most nowadays.  When I finish writing and finally get to launch that book, I hope it will remind people of all the unwritten, forgotten, fascinating folks and events that make up Maine's history -- for instance his story is how I found out about the Dennis Down murder case.  There are so many, this is just one - but one that crisscrossed so many iconic elements of Maine history that you will be swept up in his story. 

Here's to a good start to 2024 -- Happy New Year, everyone!

Keep your eyes and ears open, and look around you.  There are worlds within worlds to discover everywhere you go in Maine!

1 comment:

Mark LaFlamme said...

Sorry you had such a crappy year, Michelle. Here's to a much better 2024. Always look forward to your stuff.