If you are an Edward Gorey fan (and if you are into Halloween it’s hard for me to think you aren’t) then you probably know about his long habit of illustrating novels and doing book cover art for his own published works as well as for various and sundry in what was an amazing career (alas, gone too soon!). This year I was fortunate enough to come across a copy of The Dwindling Party (Random House, September 1982), about the visit of the MacFizzets to Hickyacket Hall – and was quick to purchase as it seemed in good condition (a birthday present to myself). Did I mention it was a pop-up book? It is a beautiful example of his stylings and wit and is fun to read aloud as one flips through curious and clever pages of the artist’s hand. If you haven’t come across one yourself, do check out online, it’s not to be missed. If you are fortunate enough to come across a good copy, don’t hesitate to pick one up if pocketbook allows. I won’t tell more and spoil the sneaky surprises it offers and I beg your indulgence for not giving up spoilers, I will simply post a couple pics (cover and one of the fold-outs) to tempt you…
Something to think about…first, apologies for lack of posts recently, I am in Southern California and when the blowing winds aren’t causing power shut-downs which means no computer, and often when power is up, no internet, there are evacuations caused by fires. It’s been difficult to get to posting and now we are at the end, though, thankfully, even with the fire line in sight, there are still trick or treaters up and down our streets, a calming vision of contentment amidst chaos. When you all close your doors this evening and reflect on the nights frivolities, follies and frights, keep in mind the resplendence of such simple pleasures as to be found on the other side of a door knock, the catharsis of carving a jack o’ lantern, the pleasurable problem of wondering if you’ve bought enough candy. Tomorrow will bring a new set of challenges and I for one will be grounded by tonights event. For those of you wishing to extend the season that bit longer, may I recommend for your perusal the book Monster, She Wrote: The Women Who Pioneered Horror and Speculative Fiction by Lisa Kroger and Melanie Anderson, a 2019 Quirk Books publication. Pick it up anywhere online or brick and mortar, downloadable or hardcover, but be sure to treat yourself to its spirited illustrations, lively writing, and deadly wit. To Countdown to Halloween and its fearless leader J.R., please accept my sincere gratitude for all you have done these many years past for your wonderful site which helps to connect Halloween bloggers. For all of you out there in the dark, please accept my great hope that your Halloween is both mirth and monsterful!
If you find yourself with nothing better to do this weekend than staring longingly at that bowl of candy you’ve purchased (so as to beat the crowds, wink wink) or you’ve done your pumpkin shopping early and while the lure of freshly roasted pumpkin seeds is calling, you know you must stay your knife-hand another 13 days and you find the hours in between now and then taxing your patience to its limits, stress no more! Take up your writing/drawing implement of choice, scour your abode for an envelope of any size, fix yourself in a comfortable chair at your favorite kneehole desk, play some apropos music and muster imaginings of “uncomfortable creatures” and draw! Why? Well, why not? If you require further prompting, consider this:
2019 Halloween Envelope Art Contest
Deadline: Postmark by Monday, October 21st, 2019
For an entry form, click any pic for link to contest page.
The Edward Gorey House is now accepting original artwork from artists of all ages for their 2019 Halloween Envelope Art Contest. An Edward Gorey-inspired decorated envelope decorated with the theme of Uncomfortable Creatures is what they are looking for this year. There is no entry fee and not a particularly big prize but winning entries, runners up, and very-close-to- being -runners up will all be displayed in the Edward Gorey House, on their website, and on their Facebook page. Winners will be notified and results will be announced on Wednesday, 10/31/19.
Mail entries to:
Edward Gorey House
8 Strawberry Lane
Yarmouth Port, MA 02675
Tell your friends!
…..and perhaps these images of past submissions will help you along, mind that deadline 😉
Sometimes it can feel like Halloween is just around the corner, sometimes it can feel like a long walk just begun. I feel that now as the warm weather beats down and the feeling of a cool breeze is just a memory from a long-ago winter. Wait. What is that I see in the distance? It beckons and guides me. It flits about in the wilderness. A lightning bug? Some phosphorescent lichen? The glowing form of some ancient wood dweller? Hmm. I don’t know what it is but I will keep heading towards it. The light is a wonder, a bedevilment, an enchantment of the senses. I yearn to be surrounded by such a light and I will gladly endure a hundred eves to get to where it awaits me. I will wait for you there.
Image – Artist unknown.
Rogers Gardens, located in Corona Del Mar, California has never failed to captivate and enthrall with their stunning displays of thematic design. This year will prove that if this pic is anything to go by, with the tagline noted I am sure we all know what to expect, but will certainly be surprised by what we find nevertheless.“We’re All Mad Here!”
This will be my seventh year visiting the Gardens for their annual Halloween Boutique opening and I look forward to what I am certain will be a not-to-be-forgotten step through the looking glass.
Will I see you there? 9:00 am on Friday, August 30th, 2019
Click pic for site and event information.
I took it to heart and stepped near to the cart and emerged in a waxing moon.
Wow – that went fast. Falloween has passed and we are on to the next. I do hope October doesn’t speed by, I like to take time and savor this time of year. Deeply Autumn, scent and sense and scintillation. Spice and season, crackle and rustle, thrill and shiver. Days spent in anticipation, the gradual reveal of funereal farce and festive folly. Countdown to Halloween begins tonite, midnight, don’t forget to stop by and look over all the great Halloween themed blogs to surface this time of year, as a hand reaching through the ground that grabs for your attention. Always so much to experience from the creators and curators of these specialized blogspots…a wonderful way to spend a little time during the coming weeks. Check the link at right to get yourself started. My own blog will be witch flavored this year, I will be stirring, spicing, swirling up a cauldron of tidbits about my favorite icon of the season.
Posting this as the clock strikes midnight and porch lights darken on another fiendish, funky, frivolity-filled festival of fright! Hope you all got what you wanted in those plastic orange pumpkins, sorting through wrappers on a self-induced sugar high, a good replacement for the adrenalin now on the wane. Halloween 2017 falls on a Tuesday which will prompt its own challenges and I for one am grateful for the long weekend this year which meant a lovely long stretch of the legs towards the slow amble of this evening. I really appreciated being able to indulge in the extra time to surprise and savor. That being said, this month flew by faster than witches on firebolts, and as an extension of the magical theme of the Season, am really looking forward to seeing Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them which opens Nov. 18th, 2016 – yet another foray into the wizarding world of you-know-who. Let me thank you all again, those of you who stopped by for a bit of “light reading” and I hope you found something you liked. Kudos to Countdown to Halloween for another raucous romp through Halloween blogs, nods to all those who partook for their dedication. I am posting a painting by an etsy artist named Chelsea Bester, this witchful depiction of the nights festivities leaves me wistful and wishing for just a little more time, alas I must reset the clock. Malevolent mirth indeed, till the moon rises next Eve, farewell!
For one Night only amid the Pall
Of fleeting days that come with Fall
Into that time of lengthy nights
Come Harvest Moon and candy Rites
For this night only Perils walk
And Nightmares wake as mortals gawk
Upon odd Folk on festooned streets
Marauders bent on taking Treats
For one night only alive They seem
To Whimsic frolic as if a dream
To Caper and Croon til Cock will Crow
With fierce abandon They bestow
For one night only We join the Fest
And add our glee to glamour’s Best
To mix Within and earn Their pass
To hide ourselves amid the Mass
For this night only too soon will end
Sun will rise and Barrier mend
They’ll draw away as if a wand
Had swept them off to Their Beyond
For this night only You too will pine
To be among those few Sublime
Who in Their turn will watch and wait
For warmer Seasons to abate
For this night only They will Return
As surely as the candles Burn
And once more will They dance on scene
With all who welcome Halloween!
by A.E., October 2009
This one I will preface by saying you may have noticed in my header the lines from a poem that I change occasionally. I post it here in its complete form, I hope you enjoy it. The work was inspired by this stamp image that I once purchased after customizing with a line from my poem. I am getting these again this year for my Halloween invites, you can purchase by the sheet, these are a great product offered by Zazzle.com go online and pick and choose and edit to your hearts desire. Can’t wait to use these again. Enjoy!
“Stroll with me beneath the Moon,
for surely They’ll be coming soon
to share with us the deepening gloom,
that must be Halloween.
Fellow Revelers walk this Night,
as They awake from yearly plight
deprived til now of sweet delight,
that must be Halloween.
Mischievousness the only goal,
for these few hours on parole.
And none but They could be so droll
that must be Halloween.
Sorry am I that They must wait,
upon the Eve to cross the gait.
Alas that is Their yearly Fate,
that must be Halloween.
All too soon the Night will fade,
and All shall pass into the Shade
to wait upon the next parade,
that must be Halloween.
Perhaps you’ll stroll with me once more,
when Gate stands wide and Spirits tour.
No other sight stir’s my hearts core,
that must be Halloween.”