I started a new job a few weeks ago. I’m working as a personal assistant to a friend of mine who runs a handful of small online business ventures. One of her shops sells holiday-themed home decor. Being October, she’s just wrapping up her Hallowe’en sales.
I’ve been prepping, packaging, labeling, and mailing bats. Lots of bats. Thousands of bats. Felt bats and vinyl bats, gloss and matte. I’ve come to loath the sound of packing tap stripping off the roll.
But I love bats. I love skeletons and jack-o-lanterns and black cats. Hallowe’en at our house is almost as fun as Christmas. My daughter has been buying us holiday decorations. We’ll start decorating this weekend (but we’re not allowed to put anything up until my daughter gets home from work). We’re looking forward to pumpkin shopping at a nearby 10-mile section of highway regionally known as Fruit Way. My oldest two have been exchanging Hallowe’en memes and gifs since the first color started showing on the leaves.
We’re not quite sure what Hallowe’en will look like this year. We may not have any trick-or-treaters, and it’s unlikely we’ll have a houseful of friends sipping hot spiced apple cider and munching on our homemade donuts. We’re debating exactly how many donuts we should make this year. The kids, of course (all adults, mind you), are trying to convince us to make a full batch. Guess how many donuts that is. Go ahead. Guess.
Two hundred. That’s right. Two-zero-zero.
We’ll almost certainly watch one of our Hallowe’en favorite films. Arsenic and Old Lace, or Young Frankenstein. Maybe a new favorite? The Quiet Place, or 10 Cloverfield Lane. (We’re not into the jump-scare gore kind of stuff.)
But, for me, one of the best parts of Hallowe’en is saving up a few good horror/ghost stories for the October issue of FFO. And do we have some great ones this year!
On the super creepy uncanny-valley side, “Larry,” by Elsa Richardson-Bach.
On the heartbreaking father-of-a-werewolf side, “Fences and Full Moons,” by Corey Farrenkopf.
On the sweet ghostly-acceptance side, “Ghost Collecting,” by Sheila Massie.
On the darkly twisted-fairy-tale side, a reprint from FFO alum, Marie Brennan, “Waiting for Beauty.”
Enjoy, and stay safe this Hallowe’en!
© 2020 Suzanne W. Vincent