Hey, fam. It’s July already. You know what that means?
Yep! 3 months until Halloween. Yes.
If you’re like me, you probably obsess over this spooky holiday. It’s definitely my favorite by far, and has been since it surpassed Christmas sometime in middle school. I’ve already started trying to decide what my family will be dressing up as, what about you?
Thinking about all that made me think about my favorite paranormal creatures. You know, the creatures of the night that are generally the antagonists in either really scary or really sexy stories. What’s up with that dichotomy?
It’s hard to choose a favorite, but if I did it would probably be vampires. They are what we’re exposed to the most in popular media. These fanged former humans sustain themselves by drinking blood. Depending on the mythology you’re sourcing it on, they may or may not have some of the following traits: sensitive to sunlight, allergic to garlic, unable to cross running water, sleeps in coffins or grave dirt, weakness to fire, weakness or repelled by Christian crosses, ability to hypnotize victims, ability to turn into a bat or other animal, telepathic abilities, and doesn’t age. I’m sure I’ve missed some, but that’s the list of the most popular traits I’ve come across.
Vampires are the subject of a whole genre of romance stories, which highlights people’s obsession with eternal youth and beauty. There’s also something to be said for the strangely sensual thrill people have at the idea of being pursued, and therefore desired, by something mysterious and powerful.
Werewolves are the subject of a simillar vein of love stories as vampires, but they have a bit of a different feel to them. While the vampire stories are often sold as being more elegant and high class, werewolves are seen as being baser, more instinctual creatures. These are typically portrayed as humans who change into wolves or wolf-like creatures by the light of the full moon. In some tales, they have full command of themselves as wolves. Others, they do not.
I’ve got to admit mixed feelings for werewolves. I’m going to blame the movie Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) because, let’s face it. WTF was with that werewolf scene? I was scarred when I saw this as a teenager. And a little turned on. And that really made me question a lot of things. After that I saw Ginger Snaps (2000) and… well.. you get the picture. Werewolves are interesting but honestly terrifying for me. Except the Twilight werewolves. Those Quileute can come over to chill any time.
I’ve always wanted to write a mermaid story, but I’m torn on which type to do. Beautiful, human-like ones like Ariel? Green, scaly, terrifying creatures like the original Little Mermaid story? Something similar to manatees, because that’s what they’d evolve into under ocean conditions? Or would I merge them with Sirens, with their hauntingly beautiful songs?
I tried to write a mermaid story, once. It had a love triangle, other worlds, time travel, and a magical desk. It was loosely inspired by an AFI song called Miss Murder. Needless to say, it was way too convoluted and never got off the ground. I think I got 6,000 words into it before calling it quits. (That’s why you plan out your stories, kids!)
Who doesn’t love zombie movies? No one, that’s who. Everyone likes some kind of zombie. Slow shambling ones, undead monsters that will beat you in a race and then eat your face, zombies that can think, zombies that convert others, zombies that climb out of the ground, zombies that are just puppets controlled by an evil master. There are all types. People love the show The Walking Dead as it combines zombies, a post-apocalyptic world, survivalism, and of course meaningful storylines and connections between people. It’s a great show (and comic).
What are your favorites?
Of the people I’ve asked, overwhelmingly I hear that vampires are the favorite. Anyone have others they love? Ones I didn’t cover here? Let me know in the comments!