When I was a kid, they used to air a television show on YTV that predated the Goosebumps franchise by a couple of years. I don’t expect many Americans will be familiar with Are You Afraid of the Dark? but for the few Canadians hanging around, I’ve been having a riot flipping through old episodes on YouTube. This one in particular with a very, very young Ryan Gosling made my night.
The setup is as such: a group of kids gather in the woods by firelight once a week to exchange spooky stories. Sometimes there are ghosts, sometimes haunted devices (the usual: haunted cabinetry, dolls that seem to have a life of their own, houses with a high creep factor and mortality rate for its inhabitants, etc.), sometimes freaky clowns. The cast themselves changed over the years as some of the kids grew up and moved away, their interpersonal relationships being a running subplot to the stories exchanged between them each week. A story within a story.
They always opened their storytelling with the line, “Submitted for the approval of the Midnight Society, I present the tale of…”
When I was ten years old and my friends and I used our lunch recesses to exchange ghost stories (mostly handed down from older brothers), Are You Afraid of the Dark? was a little piece of freaky heaven. Also likely a contributing factor to why I grew up weird.
So imagine my surprise a couple of weeks back when I was followed on twitter by a group of horror writing ladies by the same name — The Midnight Society. Surprised and delighted, I had to plumb the dark spots of my childhood to remember where I recognized the name from, but when it dawned on me, I basically threw myself at the organizer via DM and asked if I could help. Contribute. Prostitute myself for the cause. Whatever.
What is The Midnight Society
The Midnight Society isn’t a fan forum for Are You Afraid of the Dark? (before you go and get excited). It’s “A Guide to the YA & NA undead run by nine deadly writers who love horror.”
There are two other organizations of horror writers whom I know of approaching blogging similarly: YA Scream Queens and The Midnight Type. With nine regular contributors on staff, The Midnight Society embraces the weird and wonderful world of darkness that inspires horror fiction for young adult readers. It’s a little macabre, a little fascinated with dark subject matter, and a lot of fun to be able to dip into my cabinet of curiosities and dredge out a few subjects pertaining to folklore, legend tripping, hauntings, cemeteries, and writing the old dark stuff. Most importantly, my objective is to inspire others and share what I’ve accumulated over the years, and maybe even contextualize some of the stuff that inspires me in such a way that I become a better, more structured writer.
Get involved: The Midnight Society launches March 17, 2014
While there’s a few days left before the site launches on March 17th, you can definitely follow us on Twitter and on Facebook. We’re still looking for contributors who might like to participate, so if you’re interested, drop us a line.
My first post will be live on March 22, and I will posting every Saturday from thereon.
Get in touch[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”tiny” image=”icon-globe”] The Midnight Society Website & Blog
[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”tiny” image=”icon-twitter”] @Mdnight_Society on Twitter
[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”tiny” image=”icon-facebook”] The Midnight Society on Facebook