Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Halloween Costuming – the perfect indulgence in mind games

Do you plan to “dress up” for Halloween this year? I’m leaning toward “yes,” but as usual find myself paralyzed with indecision. I won’t buy anything other than maybe a few accent pieces, which leaves me at the mercy of my wardrobe.

It’s been many years since I’ve worn a costume for a Halloween. I do have a vague recollection of putting on my husband’s gei one year and going as  “ninja” to an office event about a decade ago. To be fair, I also strapped on some of his weaponry – nothing pointy or sharp – to give myself some sense of authenticity.

And there lies the crux of my problem. I’m always looking for authenticity. But authenticity flies in the face of the whole purpose of Halloween costuming, doesn’t it?

The purpose is to dress up like something you’re NOT. Right? To indulge those fantasies. To play someone other than yourself even if for a few brief hours. But maybe not….

Let’s face it, the truth is we all wear masks every day. We have our work masks, our social masks, our family masks.  Maybe wearing  a Halloween costume is an opportunity, in fact, to show the world the real you.

Feeling like showing off your sexier side? Take a look here at our Alexa Day’s hints from last year.

Do you spend your days riding a desk but wishing you were out on the open plains, the wind rustling through your hair? Be a cowboy/cowgirl. It doesn’t take much—pair of jeans and boots, a bandana, a cowboy hat and rope for lassoing whoever it is you might want to lasso. Or for the softer look, a cute skirt and frilly top and cute boots. And don’t forget the lasso! For some ideas, take a look at this special Dancing with the Stars piece:

I SO should’ve been a cowboy. Really. Sigh.

Or how about if you’re a dancer at heart, one of those people who can’t keep still when the music starts. Go with something dramatic, something with flair, like Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough dancing the Argentine Tango.

I SO should have been a dancer. Really.

Want to let loose your inner comic? How about going as a “Cereal Killer”? All you need to do is create a “shirt” out of a box, decorate it as a cereal box, stick a rubber knife in the “rib” area and dribble ketchup or red paint (blood) down the side. (I have to give credit for this one to my friend who dressed like this when our kids were small. During the school-wide Halloween parade, she was called to the principal’s office for dressing violently…true story.)

Want to show the real side of the romance writer? Wear granny glasses (because you’re blind from staring at the computer for a break-free, 96-hour stretch); hair that hasn’t been combed in that time (because you’re on deadline), ratty/saggy knit top dribbled with coffee/tea/spaghetti stains down its front (from eating at the computer); sweatpants and slipper socks...

Or how about going as the erotic novelist at reader event? Dress up playing dress up. Find that rope from the cowboy outfit….:-)

These are just a few ideas to get you started. Whether you're playing your fantasy, or showing the world the REAL YOU, don’t be afraid. And have fun! I know I will.


By day, Leah works as a mild-mannered book blogger (among other things) at her local newspaper, but at night, she lets her imagination run wild, crafting stories of romance, suspense, murder, mayhem and love. Always love. Read more about Leah and learn about special promotions for the month of October at


  1. Okay, now I'm inspired. What will I be for Halloween? Hmmm.....

    1. I can totally see you as a something like a wizard (wizardess?). :-)

  2. Halloween has been my favorite holiday forever, and I always made everyone's costumes. From husband, me, the kids and now the grandkids. My favorite 'couple' costume was a stroke of genius; we went as the 'Bobbits'. Luckily I can talk my husband into doing just about anything,

    1. How fun, Elvy! And why am I not surprised. :-) I made my older son a Superman costume when he was five--meaning from a pattern with fabric, etc. I have to say, it was pretty amazing.