The 2017 OTIS Halloween Season

September 11, 2017 — It feels like the great scaly beast that is Halloween has already lifted ponderously off its haunches and is taking off whether I’m clinging to its back or not, borne on tweets about seasonal supermarket aisles and Facebook posts about upcoming horror movies and retail shelves full of ceramic jack-o-lanterns and temperatures that are punching summer right in its bronzed, smug face.

So I’m jumping right on that monster like Kyle Mclaughlin in Dune. Have you celebrated with us before here at OTIS? If not, let me explain. And for those of you who have, keep reading. We’ve got new stuff coming. Also, it helps my bounce rate.

In a tweet, the OTIS Halloween Season means daily spooky and autumn-y content every day until October 31. I’m talking visits to creepy sites, old traditions and new gimmicks, seasonal activities, comestibles, and all those tenuous, ineffable things only understood during that time of year when the barrier between the physical and the spiritual thins to cellophane. OTIS is an experiential site, and we’re going to experience some serious Halloween. Also some funny Halloween. For hundreds of examples of what I’m talking about here, check out the Halloween Blogs Past section on the nav bar above. And that’s coming every single day. Also on those days in long-term commitments.

Well, almost every single day. Not Sundays. And not for Biblical reasons. Sundays are OTIS Club Newsletter days. If you’re not a member of the OTIS Club, this is a great opportunity for you to trial it. All the issues for the next two months will be candy-corn flavored, and for a mere ten bucks ($5 for September, $5 for October), you can get all eight autumn issues, full of behind-the-scenes Halloweenery, oddity news, personal anecdotes, and me treating my readers like they are my collective psychiatrist. There are also other perks at that level. Or you can jump in at the $1 or $3 level and get a selection of the issues. You can also cancel anytime without hurting my feelings. Well, that’s not true. Membership cancellations drive a stake in my heart. But I do understand.

All right. Done with selling. The OTIS Halloween Season brings with it some new things this year of our gourd 2017. For instance, this year, I’m doing a daily OTIS HALLOWEEN DIE-ARY. The one thing that I’ve never quite been satisfied about with the OTIS Halloween Season is that it’s not in real-time. I have to actually make the content in addition to experiencing it. Sometimes that means writing articles or filming posts in advance using sites I’ve already been to or ideas that are evergreen and often that means not writing at all about things I’ve done in the season because I just run out of calendar squares with ghosts on them.

So, this year, every night, sometime before 1 am, I’ll be posting an entry in the DIE-ARY. Maybe it’ll be a few paragraphs of text, maybe some photos, maybe an impromptu video. But whatever the media, I’ll just be telling you about my day, and how it rated on the Halloween scale. Those entries will stay up all season in a special section there in the right column so that you can catch up on them whenever you want. I have no idea how this is going to turn out. I’m thinking there’s an 80% chance it’ll be stupid. But I’ll take that hit for Halloween.

Now: My biggest, biggest, biggest, biggest, biggest, biggest, biggest news of this OTIS Halloween Season/my entire life on this mudball. I have my first novel coming out in October. This nonfiction writer is now a mutant hybrid nonfiction-fiction writer. The book is called Death and Douglas, and it's technically a middle-grade novel, but that just means it’s about 12-year-olds and there are no F-bombs. It’s the story a boy raised in a funeral home in New England, the basement morgue of which is suddenly filling with murder victims. And he and his friends have to solve the mystery those corpses represent before more people die. You can preorder it now. Please do. Please, please do.

And that’s about it for OTIS Halloween Season prognostications. The only other thing is to mention the socials. You can follow my season on both the OTIS Facebook Page and Twitter. Instagram, too, but that’s only for OTIS Club Members at a certain membership tier.

Man, that was too many words for this kickoff. I only wanted to say Happy Halloween Season, fellow pumpkinheads!