Hello Friends and Fiends,
We’re quickly approaching the release date for Lucy Snyder’s short story collection Halloween Season on October 5th. Now during a time when we can all use a little more holiday cheer, Halloween Season certainly takes us to where we need and want to be. For dedicated fans, the season begins when the leaves start turning autumn colors and doesn't finish until Hallowtide ends in November. With it comes a whole lot of fun: scary movies and stories, haunted houses, seasonal sweets, spooky decorations, costume parties, and of course trick or treat. But Halloween is also a deeply spiritual time for some; it's an opportunity to remember and honor loved ones who have passed on.
Master storyteller Lucy A. Snyder has filled her cauldron with everything that Halloween means to her and distilled it into a spell-binding volume of stories. Within these pages you'll find thrills and chills, hilarity and horrors, the sweet and the naughty.
One of the best things about Halloween is you don’t have to be yourself. So go ahead and try on a new mask or two ... you may discover hidden talents as a witch, a pirate, a space voyager, a zombie fighter, or even an elf. This is the perfect collection to celebrate the season of the dead or to summon those heady autumn vibes whenever you like. You may even find a couple of tales that evoke a certain winter holiday that keeps trying to crowd in on the fun!
Now in anticipation of this sweet little treat, I wanted to share a personal spooky season tale with all of you in celebration of the most wonderful time of the year.
So most of you know that my family is crazy (and I say that with love--hi mom and dad!). We used to have these really intense scare wars when my brother and I lived at home, and this lead to my dad stuffing a clown in the back seat of my car, to my brother dressing up like a clown and hiding in the shower, to my Mom dressing up like Ghostface and jumping out of the woods at me while I was riding my quad.
Almost all of these moments ended with me screaming and crying and being terrified to ever go in my garage or my shower or the woods alone again, but the one prank that definitely stood out among the rest goes to my dad and crowns him the Wytovich Scare War Champion.
Here’s what happened:
I was notorious for forgetting my house key as a kid. Honestly, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to break into our house or my parent’s cars in order to hit the garage door opener so I wouldn’t have to sit outside in my driveway until my parents came home. I also hated Halloween as a kid because like I said, my parents are crazy, and once October hit, our house became a war zone. For instance, I would find dolls underneath my window, plastic spiders were literally everywhere, and probably the best example of this is that when I was afraid of monkeys as a kid, my dad went out and bought a full guerilla body suit and tackled me while watching TV one night.
weekend, we’re decorating for Halloween and my dad is encouraging me to help
him with the decorations as a way to kind of overcome my fears (yay exposure therapy!).
We had this really creepy old man mask that just terrified me, and every year
we would grab some of my dad’s old work clothes and boots and kind of stuff
this terrifying man on our front porch to act as this infernal greeter—which is
funny because we lived in the middle of nowhere so we never had trick or
treaters. But I digress. So I spent the day helping our creepy guest get situated
on the porch, and then I got ready for school.
When I came home the next day, I noticed that my key wasn’t in my bag. My dad’s truck was in the driveway though, so I breathed a sigh of relief and walked over to the front porch, forgetting that my nemesis was there waiting for me. I can vividly see my younger self staring at this old man on the porch, and can remember telling myself that it was just a joke, that I literally stuffed him and put him together last weekend, and that there was nothing to worry about. It was fun. A Halloween joke. Everything would be fine and there was no reason why I couldn’t walk up those steps and ring that doorbell.
So I took a deep breath and ran.
I rang the doorbell once, twice.
So then I started knocking on the door.
Eventually I walked over to the window to kind of peer inside. I started yelling for my dad because I could hear that the TV was on, so I knew he had to be around there somewhere, and then that’s when I saw movement out of the corner of my eye.
At first it was subtle, something that was easy to second guess, to chalk up to fear, adrenaline. I remembered what my dad had said about conquering my fears, so I walked closer to the man, told him that he didn’t scare me, that he wasn’t real….
And that’s when my dad—who earlier had put on the mask and his old work clothes and boots and sat in that chair waiting for me to come home—jumped out, grabbed me, and nearly gave me a heart attack. I screamed, cried, and then laughed so hard because my dad looked ridiculous and I couldn’t believe that I hadn’t noticed that it was him in there that whole time.
And sure, okay, this story is a little rough, maybe even borderline mean, but you have to remember that my dad and I lived to play pranks on each other when I was little (and still kind of do now, to be honest), and it was these types of scares and jokes that lead me to deeply love and appreciate Halloween and honestly helped me to conquer my fears. Truly, I could tell you a thousand stories about how afraid of everything I used to be as a kid, but by my mom and dad removing those fears and helping me to realize my strength, it allowed me to become stronger, which is why I will always think that horror is the best, most practical genre because it teaches us how to navigate life and defeat our monsters—real or imaginary.
Plus, now I can go on and scare… I mean help…other children, too.
[insert maniacal laughter here]
Trick or Treat!
Thanks for participating in our trick or treat cover reveal! RDSP is offering a postcard promo pack that will include a sticker and at least 2 postcards (not necessarily the ones pictured). To receive your promo pack email your address to us. Unfortunately we can only send promo packs to US addresses so we've also put together a printable download for anyone outside the US.
Visit all the houses on the block to collect all the treats. Here are the current stops and treats.
- Stop #1 Lucy A. Snyder (excerpt from Halloween Season)
- Stop #2 Cover artist Lynne Hansen (printable bookmark)
- Stop #3 Raw Dog Screaming Press (postcard promo pack)
- Stop #4 Hook of Book publicist Erin Sweet Al Mehairi (signed, hand-lettered Halloween poem)
- Stop #5 John Edward Lawson (Halloween card and story)