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Saturday, October 5, 2013

Halloween and Me by Michael West (GUEST POST)

You might think that Halloween is a big deal for a horror writer. Well, in my case, you would be right. If you’ve read my novel Spook House, you know that fall, the month of October, and of course, the day of Halloween all hold a special place in my heart. In fact, here at West Manor, it is simply the most wonderful time of the year.

I’m a creature of habit…of tradition, if you will. Every year, I must watch It’s A Wonderful Life and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the original cartoon, thank you very much!) sometime on or shortly after Thanksgiving. Call me sappy, but it just doesn’t seem like the Christmas season unless I’ve seen those flicks at least once. The same is true about my beloved All Hallow’s Eve. Sure, I can carve a pumpkin and put graves in my front yard, but I’m just not fully into the festive spirit of the holiday until I watch some scary movies. And during the month of October, you can turn on practically any channel and find some great Horror flicks: The Exorcist, Dawn of the Dead, American Werewolf in London, and of course one if not all of the Halloween films…all required viewing for everyone who considers themselves a fan of the genre.

I also travel down to Franklin, Indiana, to the historic Artcraft Theater. It is an old-fashioned, single-screen movie palace that is slowly being restored. It was also one of the inspirations for the Woodfield Movie Palace in my novel Cinema of Shadows. Every weekend in October, they always show some classic horror films on the big screen. Love it!

And then, of course there is AMC. In addition to the premiere of the latest season of The Walking Dead, they also have Fearfest, which runs for about the last two weeks of the month through Halloween night—Horror films 24 hours a day. Absolute heaven!

The month of October usually keeps me busy with signings as well. Book stores love to do events that tie in with the season, and you can usually find me at one or more of them during the month, doing readings and signing copies of my work. It is always wonderful to meet new and faithful readers, and Halloween is a special time when everyone, even people who could normally care less, actually get(s) excited about Horror.

Now, you might say, “Mr. West, you are a life-long fan of the genre, don’t you do all this stuff all year round?” And you know what? You’d be absolutely right. I do watch and read Horror 365 days a year. And, as a writer of Horror fiction, I do get to go out and do readings and signings throughout the year. So why is Halloween so special? Simple: Halloween is the day that the doors open on the West Manor Haunted House.

I’ve worked on Haunted Houses as long as I can remember. Growing up, we would always do something to scare the trick-or-treaters who came to our door. In high school, I would design a haunted attraction for our school auditorium each year, raising money to help the Drama and Band departments. And, when I grew older and got a home of my own, it was only natural that I would want to haunt it. So, every year, walls go up, cobwebs get spun, gravestones rise up out of my lawn, and screams and moans ring out throughout the neighborhood.

We usually average about 200-300 trick-or-treaters. Carloads of children and their parents come in from miles around. Ask someone in our neighborhood where they live, and they will tell you their location in reference to the “Halloween house.” Yes, indeed. West Manor has become a staple at Halloween, and I enjoy every scream-filled moment of it.

What can I say? I love scaring people. And whether it be through a haunted house on Halloween night, or the pages of my latest novel, I hope to be able to do it for many years to come.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Stay scared!

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About the Author

Michael West is the critically-acclaimed author of The Wide Game, Cinema of Shadows, Spook House, Skull Full of Kisses, and the Legacy of the Gods series.  A graduate of Indiana University, with a degree in Telecommunications and Film Theory,  West has written a multitude of short stories, articles, and reviews for various on-line and print publications.  He lives and works in the Indianapolis area with his wife, their two children, their bird, Rodan, their turtle, Gamera, and their dog, King Seesar.

His children are convinced that spirits move through the woods near their home.


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About the Book

The Wide Game
by Michael West

On the advice of his wife, Paul Rice is making plans to attend his 10th year High School reunion. Returning to his boyhood home of Harmony, Indiana, he finds that he is still haunted by memories of that time-memories of Deidra, his first love, and memories of the Wide Game. It was ten years ago that Paul and his friends watched their day of fun become a race for their lives, a fight for their very souls.

Now, as he meets the survivors of that day once more, Paul makes a chilling discovery: the incomprehensible forces that toyed with them have yet to finish playing their own game.

The Wide Game is one of the Harmony, Indiana horror novels from Michael West, which also include Cinema of Shadows and Spook House.

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Tour Activities and Schedule

9/30 Fallen Over Book Reviews Spotlight

9/30 Lost Inside the Covers Review

9/30 A Haunted Head Contest

9/30 SpecMusicMuse Interview

10/1 Jess Resides Here Guest Post

10/1 Come Selahway With Me Top Ten List

10/2 3 Partners in Shopping, Nanny, Mommy, and Sissy Too! Spotlight

10/2 Armand Rosamilia, Author Guest Post

10/3 Sheila Deeth Spotlight

10/3 Deal Sharing Aunt Review

10/4 MikesFilmTalk Interview

10/4 Book Den Spotlight

10/4 L. Andrew Cooper’s Horrific Scribblings Review

10/5 Beauty in Ruins Guest Post

10/5 Pick of the Literate Review

10/6 Bee’s Knees Reviews Review

1 comment:

  1. I''m easily scared, you know.....
    Congrats to Michael on his book!

    ReplyDelete