Letter from the Editor: Halloween

Letter from the Editor: Halloween


I always wanted to be able to talk to ghosts as a child (and now, I suppose). Ghost stories are always my favorite, and I read them on Reddit threads before going to bed fairly often. In my first year with Iris, I tried to get those from the university community to submit their own ghost stories to me to put in a fun Halloween article. Only one person submitted, and she worked with Iris. Thus, when I posed Halloween to the editorial team and to the writers as our theme for this issue, I will admit I had a personal agenda. The writers this cycle certainly far surpassed anything I thought imaginable for this theme and have redeemed my dreams for writing about Halloween.

In Addison Gilligan’s “Ladybugs and Mirrors,” she details why she has always been uncomfortable dressing up for Halloween and what kind of vulnerabilities costumes open up. In “Body Horror,” the author illuminates, through a mixture of poetry and prose, the pain and discomfort that comes with not being able to control their body and the ways in one's body demarcates their identity. Juliana Callen describes a similar pain and fear that the body can manifest in her humorous “Don’t Get Your Ovaries in a Bunch.”

Moon Zaman shows the darker side of the Halloween festivities in her haunting poem, “halloween's not scary when you're an adult.” Mesina conjures the ghosts of family relationships in their poem, “Hauntings of an American Home as Told by a Second-Generation American Girl.”

In her perfectly dramatic poem “Blood of Love,” Andi Sink pulls the reader into a world of haunting love that would put Gomez and Morticia Addams to shame. In her hilarious, yet scary short story “A Halloween Night,” Pasha McGuigan leaves the reader wary of the night (and with a newfound fear of MLMs).

Chloe Lyda, in her three poems collected under the title “Fall Comes in Threes,” brings to life the warm, fun fall festivities of this time of year. And Juliana Callen just had to give us one more witty, wry piece, this one inspired by the jump-scare of her roommate’s cat, in, “A List of Things I have Mistaken for My Friend's Black Cat.” In my own submission this cycle (how could I not publish in my favorite theme), I write about wandering around a graveyard unable to locate my loved ones (all kinds of subtext in this one!) in “Lost in a Cemetery.”