Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Halloween in the Quirky Suburbs of SoCal

While other little girls played with Barbie dolls and latest version of baby 'cry and wet', I collected Universal Monster Collectibles and stayed up late at night to watch the horror host, "Moon-a-Lisa" introduce the classic Universal Studio Monster (black and white) movies.

One of my favorites was the 1932 version of The Mummy.

For those unfamiliar with the movie, I've created a plot summary:

In 1921 a field expedition in Egypt discovers the mummy of ancient Egyptian prince Im-Ho-Tep, who was condemned and buried alive for sacrilege. Also found in the tomb is the Scroll of Thoth, which can bring the dead back to life. One night a young member of the expedition reads the Scroll out loud, and then goes insane, realizing that he has brought Im-Ho-Tep back to life. Ten years later, disguised as a modern Egyptian, the mummy attempts to reunite with his lost love, an ancient princess who has been reincarnated into a beautiful young woman.

Yes, a new version was made in 1998.  However, I prefer Boris Karloff, and the stylized special effects. The flashback scenes in ancient Egypt were designed to resemble a silent film, with no dialog, exaggerated make-up and gestures, and a faster camera speed, to suggest the great antiquity of the events portrayed. 

And, if you are an avid fan of this genre, you will know that this is the only Universal monster of the time without a fictional antecedent. Large segments of the movie are scene-by-scene parallels of the movie Dracula (1931). An ankh symbol (the ancient Egyptian glyph for "life") is substituted for the crucifix of the earlier movie. Even Edward Van Sloan's character, Dr. Muller, is quite analogous to his Dr. Van Helsing from the vampire film.

So, it comes to no surprise that I really, really look forward to Halloween.  I throw a 'pre-Halloween' Spooktacular party for all of the youngsters in my family.  This year: Bloody Fingers (lean franks in a bun), Cat's eyes (glowing yellow jigglers with a sliver of a red grape), goblin toes, bat cupcakes, and bubbling witches' brew. (Visit my Pinterest boards for more info).

This is why I penned my Fun & Sassy Fantasy series.  I wanted to have a good time.  And more importantly, I wanted my readers to share in the fun!  My next novella, "Bell, Book, and Gargoyle" is set in Hollywood.  And "Walk Like An Egyptian" plays homage to my favorite Universal Studio classic.

Since I reside in Southern California, I can spent a day or two at Universal Studios.  I'm sorry so that much of the back lot was destroyed in a fire several years ago.  However, the pond that doubled for a Louisiana swamp in The Mummy's Curse, and provided close-up scenes while filming The Creature from The Black Lagoon, is still part of the guided tour.

I hope you enjoy my current release: "Here Today, Zombie Tomorrow" #10 on this weekend's Holiday list of most downloaded free novels on Amazon.  I am also being interviewed by
 I.B. Nosey, reporter on October 30th (http://feelingnosey.blogspot.com).  Please to login and participate in the fun (I.B. did mention prizes).

And, in case you are wondering. . . yes, I do collect Monster High Dolls :-).  (I am still searching for the Zombie doll).

Please visit my website: www.novelsbyconnievines.com  or click on: http://about.me/ConnieVines

Happy Halloween to all of my readers,