So the holidays are over and I’m back in classes. Totally ready for this semester–I think. The book fair was fun, I got to meet a lot of nice folks and hang out with some old friends, and had some other friends (Hi Ian and Lisa! Hi Judy!) stop by my table and say hi. It was a cold and blustery day, so the turnout was dampened a bit, but it was still worth it.
Now the flush of holiday activity is faded, the fair is over, and the cold reality of late January is setting in. This is my birth month, so you’d think I’d love it, but January is actually pretty rough for me. Cold and I are not friends, and birthdays–while fun– always have that “contemplating my own mortality” vibe to them. (It begins at midlife, so get used to it.) Interesting, and with the bizarre string of deaths that we’ve had this January, it’s got me thinking:
- The boomers are getting on in years.
- There are two major points in each life that are an absolute requirement. Birth and death.
- In the next twenty to thirty years, the number of deaths is going to increase at the same rate as births did during the baby boom.
Depressing, yeah? It’s not weird, it is the natural cycle, but what we will witness is an unprecedented increase in death rate. In contemplating this, I wonder if that will mean an increase in the fascination with death, as occurred during the plague years. Is it not appropriate for writers to contemplate mortality and the unknown right now? Will the writing of this generation recover some of the Gothic tendencies of those first trailblazers, Shelley, Poe, and Hawthorne?
Granted the Gothic has never left our minds since its inception. It has grown, changed, acquired appendages in disturbing places, but it has not ever disappeared. It can be traced through our modern romance, especially the paranormal that is so hot right now, fantasy, mystery, sci-fi, and horror genres.
I liken it to the kraken of myth, or perhaps more aptly, Cthulu or one of his ilk. Squirmy, hard to pin down, and with tentacles breaching every
orifice sub-genre. Still, this is where I’ve chosen to make my home, this forest of dark delights. So I put my head sown and delve into these dark mysteries for you, dear readers. For you I brave the dark nights and cold headstones. Over the next few years I will be studying the Gothic on as many levels as time will allow, and I will share what I can for you here. I will also resume my work on book 2 of The Nova Wave series, but don’t be too shocked if things get a little darker. After all, what is a good tale without a few monsters?
Until Next Time…