It is that time of year, my favorite holiday…HALLOWEEN!!! Is there any greater holiday for a creative writer? My opinion is no, not a chance. You see, what is it we really like about creative writing? We like the story, the characters, the intrigue, we like the climax, and we all like a good ending. But we absolutely love the man in the mask. That one hero, or villain. The one character you didn’t see until it was too late. We love to write about them, we love to read about them. The greatest thing about the Scooby Doo cartoons was seeing the villain unmasked at the end. So why not celebrate the characters we love with a holiday they were destined for.
I have yet to master the skills to create the perfect masked character, but it’s something I’m always looking to do. I try writing a piece this way, I put in a turn that way, yet my results remain the same. I have wondered why this has eluded me. Especially since we are all, in essence, wearing different masks at one time or another. Different masks, for different situations. We have the one we wear when we’re in public. Or the one we wear when we attend church. The masks we wear attending a family gathering. We all use different parts of our personalities to help us get through our busy lives. So, if I am capable of wearing several masks a day, why can I not write about them?
Mostly, I think it is because writing about the masks we wear, and letting others read about them, makes us vulnerable. A mask is a way to hide our identity. It is protection from the things we fear. Masks allow us to go about our business without allowing people to see the person underneath. Halloween gives us a chance to wear a different mask. It gives us an opportunity to be whoever, or whatever we want for a short time. Behind a mask we can temporarily live out our dreams. You want to be an astronaut, here you go. You want to be a zombie, no problem. A homicidal maniac…well we have enough of those already. My point being that Halloween is the one time a year, besides the ever-popular Comic Con, that we can be anything we want to be.
Real life is a sobering reality that we don’t always get what we want. In fact, almost never. Only so many people can walk on the moon. The rest of us, we are left with a shattered dream. The streets paved with gold are only a fairy tale. The pauper rarely marries the prince. I urge all of you, young, old, somewhere in between, take advantage of times like these when the mask you wear is out of fun, and not out of necessity. Kick up your knickers, let your hair down, everybody Wang Chung tonight (whatever that was supposed to mean).
And since this is a writing blog, I also urge you to watch others enjoying their own fun. Watch how your friends and colleagues behave when they have the freedom to act a little silly. Maybe you will find your own way to write the perfect phantom of the opera. If not, at least you will have a lot of fun trying. Happy Halloween.
#masks #halloween #creativewriting