Readers may have noted that Hollywood Gothique has yet to post its annual Halloween Haunt Awards; moreover, several haunts we visited at the tail end of season were relegated to brief capsule comments instead of complete reviews. Stepping outside of the "royal we" that I usually employ when addressing you directly, I want to beg your indulgence as I try to do justice to all the fearful entertainment and artistry provided by Halloween Haunts in Los Angeles this year, but the sad fact is that, at the end of the month I suffered a personal tragedy that nearly provoked me into shutting down the website: my brother died on October 20. I was in no mood to continue, but a sense of obligation kept me going: there were two contests running on the website, and I needed to announce winners; there were haunts I had visited that were expecting reviews to be published.
Ultimately, I decided to fulfill my obligations in as professional a manner as possible and see the Halloween season through to its end. This had the added benefit of distracting me somewhat from my grief, but when the season ended, along with it went the sense of obligation. All that remained was my personal sense of doing justice to haunts that had been shortchanged during the busy final days of October, and that just wasn't enough. Now, after a few weeks of mourning, I am attempting to get back to business and complete all the work I had intended to do. Hopefully, there is still an interested audience out there.