Magical Words Link Roundup 7-17-2017


Let’s start the week off with a bunch of links designed to spark ideas in all you writerly types. If you end up writing a story because of one of these, let me know! Ready?

It it said to be one of the biggest buried treasures in the world. Valued at over one billion dollars, it’s no mystery why so many people have risked their lives to try and find it.

The sleepy medieval village of Gotham, or “Goat’s Town,” near Nottingham, England, has by some accounts been painted as town of fools. But other stories claim just the opposite: that the villagers were an exceptionally shrewd bunch who only pretended to be fools to trick the powers that be.

A lost manuscript reveals new evidence that Butch Cassidy survived the 1908 shoot-out during which he was thought to have been killed and lived to an old age, anonymously, in Washington state.

Mercury, the diminutive planet closest to the Sun, was notoriously mysterious due to its difficulty to explore. That changed on March 18, 2011, when the MESSENGER spacecraft from Johns Hopkins’ Applied Physics Laboratory achieved orbit around Mercury.

For the second time this summer, China’s quantum computer scientists have blown the rest of the world out of the water. In early July, a team of 32 researchers reported achieving quantum teleportation from Ngari in Chinese-occupied Tibet, to the Micius satellite up in space — across layers of interfering atmosphere and 870 miles. That’s about the distance from Los Angeles to Montana.

On January 25, 1959, nine Russian students embarked on a journey across the Otorten Mountain range, which is nestled in the northern Urals, for a strenuous cross-country skiing trip. They were never seen alive again.

On the cold evening of November 8, 1878, a sixteen year-old boy named Charles Ashmore walked out of the back door of his family’s farm house to fetch fresh water from the spring a short distance away. When he did not return, his family became uneasy and took a lantern to search for the boy. A new snow had just fallen and Charles’ footprints were plainly visible as they went out the back door and started across the yard. His father and sister followed his trail for a short distance but after going about 75 yards, they saw that the trail abruptly ended. Beyond the last footprint was nothing other than smooth, unbroken snow – the boy’s tracks simply came to an end.

In England, 1985, a series of bizarre fires broke out, destroying many homes and businesses. The link between the fires was a collection of paintings, known as ‘Crying Boys’. Out of the devastation of each fire, only the paintings would survive, and soon, they would be labelled as ‘cursed’.

It is not uncommon for children to have imaginary friends. Often times, a mischievous child will blame some wrongdoing on a spectral presence or a favorite doll, and parents will dismiss it as a bright imagination. But what happens when the doll begins to torment the child and terrorize anyone who lives within the household? Such is the strange case of Robert, the haunted doll of Key West, Florida.

The gates of hell are various places on the surface of the world that have acquired a legendary reputation for being entrances to the underworld. Often they are found in regions of unusual geological activity, particularly volcanic areas, or sometimes at lakes, caves or mountains.


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