Monday, October 22, 2012

13 Days of Halloween: Day 4, Marty Young

Hello world!

Welcome to Day 4 of the 13 Days of Halloween, when the authors of the Tales of the Mist anthology go trick or treatin'! Our treat: 13 days of fun guest posts by each author of the just released TALES FROM THE MIST anthology. Ready to go? Yes? Here we go, then... :)

Before I start, I'd like to share that TALES FROM THE MIST is currently on sale at $4.99 through October 31st. After this date, the regular price of $5.99 will apply. The book can currently be purchased from the following retailers:

Amazon US (in digital and print versions)
Amazon UK (in digital and print versions)
Barnes and Noble

TALES FROM THE MIST is already gathering some pretty neat endorsements, including the following one:

"One of those rare anthologies that gets it right from the first story to the last."
~ Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Flesh Eaters and Mutated

So on this note, I leave the floor to the first author in the anthology: Marty Youngwho shares his experiences of Halloween from an Australian perspective...

A Kiwi Halloween
By Marty Young

Growing up in Hastings, New Zealand, we never really got to enjoy Halloween.
It existed—for me, anyway—as some kind of weird holiday I got to see on TV and in movies. Halloween was so far removed from my world that it might as well have been as make-believe as the shows I was watching. It sure looked like fun, though, dressing up as ghosts and goblins and monsters and ghouls, and decking out your house with bats and Jack o’ lanterns and spiders and such…

I remember going to the Hastings Library one day and looking up Halloween in the Dewy Decimal System (bloody hell, that makes me feel old!). Even back then, I was curious about the darker side of things, and an eve spent pretending to be all manner of monsters just intrigued the hell outta me. Imagine then, the surprise of this budding young horror writer when I discovered the supernatural connections this day had. Pagan festivals, the close proximity of the world of the dead—my still-to-be-corrupted mind was spinning out of control. 

Sure, the movies and TV shows mentioned some of that, but I had no idea it was all real.
Boy, I really was missing out…

Each year after that, I’d get to watch Halloween unfold on TV and in the movies with a sense of missing out, until finally, I determined that it was a silly holiday for babies. When you can’t enjoy the fun yourself, you turn the event into something you wouldn’t want to attend even if you could; no way was it as cool as I’d made it out to be. I put it from my mind, buried it deep, and carried on with life. 

It wasn’t until my university days that I got the chance to go trick or treating. This still wasn’t done in New Zealand in the 1990s (I’m not sure if it is now, either), but a small group of us decided one year that we should give it a go. Why not, right? It’ll be fun. So we dressed up and hit the streets, so excited about our very first trick or treat expedition that we were giggling like little kids. My costume left a lot to be desired, and was no doubt fuelled by all of the beer I had consumed; I wore a raincoat and gumboots, and when anyone asked for a treat, I flashed them.

(I was wearing shorts underneath so it wasn’t quite as bad as it sounds.)

We had a blast that night—only we didn’t really get a great deal of candy. What we got instead was a couple of bottles of wine, and invited into a party. I got asked to ‘treat’ a lot. It was great. Nothing like Halloween played out on TV, but still an experience I’ll never forget.  
I haven’t been trick or treating since. And actually, I haven’t even experienced any Halloween parties, where the location is decked out in its finest ghostly treats and everyone drinks bloody marys with skeleton straws. I always find myself caught where folks just don’t do that kinda thing.

(Hey, Einstein, why not host a Halloween party yourself?)

A goal of mine is to be in the States one Halloween, and to enjoy this wild and crazy night to its fullest, like I begrudgingly admit to wishing I could’ve done when I was young. We’ve all gotta have our goals, right?

About Marty: 

Marty Young ( is a Bram Stoker nominated editor and writer and sometimes ghost hunter. He was the founding President of the Australian Horror Writers Association (AHWA) from 2005-2010, and one of the creative minds behind the internationally acclaimed Midnight Echo magazine. His horror fiction has been reprinted in Australian Dark Fantasy and Horror (‘the best of 2008’), repeatedly included in Ellen Datlow’s year’s best recommended reading list, and nominated for both the Australian Shadows and Ditmar awards. Marty’s essays on horror literature have been published in journals and university textbooks in Australia and India, and he is co-editor of the Australian Shadows Award-winning Macabre; a Journey through Australia’s Darkest Fears, a landmark anthology showcasing some of the best Australian horror stories from 1836 to 2010. He also runs the HWA’s Horror Roundtable every month on the Dark Whispers blog.


TALES FROM THE MIST will take you on a journey into the dark world of the paranormal. These twelve stories vary in their degree of horror, yet all reach across the boundaries of their genres into the chilling realms of the macabre. Witches, ghosts, shape-shifters and vampire rats are some of the creatures that reign within these pages.

About Marty's story, ADDICTION:

If you were told you could become a God, would you? Imagine the power, and how it could be used. But then there’s that saying about power isn’t there? And how it corrupts...

~ Natalie G. Owens ~
No Rules. No Formulas. 

Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!