It’s that time of year again. The leaves are turning, a chill is in the air, and Halloween is just around the corner. It’s easy to see how much we at University Press of Mississippi love Halloween—if you look at our film, folklore, and popular culture lists, you’ll notice we’ve published dozens of books on horror films, witches, vampires, zombies, and more.
Below you’ll find UPM’s guide to celebrating Halloween, complete with book pairings to add a little academia to your trick and treat.
Watch a classic—or two or four—and then learn the tricks of the horror trade by reading interviews with some of the world’s greatest directors. Our suggestions include:
Night of the Living Dead and George Romero: Interviews
Psycho, Rear Window, or Vertigo and Alfred Hitchcock: Interviews
Rosemary’s Baby and John Cassavetes: Interviews
Carrie and Brian De Palma: Interviews
Or pretty much anything with Tim Burton: Interviews
For a full list of volumes in the Conversations with Filmmakers series, click here.
Go on a Haunted TourFrom cemeteries and historic houses to college campuses and city streets, there are more haunted places in the South than you’d think. If you’re brave enough, take a tour (or lead your own) through one of these spooky spots.
For suggestions, check out Haunted Halls: Ghostlore of American College Campuses and Haunted Places in the American South.
Tell Ghost Stories
It’s hard to beat telling scary stories around a camp fire. These books are filled with tales of fright that are perfect for telling in the dark:
Binge Watch a Spooky Show
In the age of streaming, there are so many great shows to watch to get into the Halloween spirit, from The Walking Dead to True Blood to Bates Motel and American Horror Story. As you watch, check out interviews with the writers of these frightening and fascinating shows and learn all about what it takes to create horror for TV.
Sometimes there’s nothing more frightening than the “true” stories we tell ourselves. This Halloween, we recommend spending some time reading about how contemporary legends and folktales get started and spread around the world: