Why do I include the holidays in my stories?
I get this question a lot and some people are really venomous about it, which surprises me. I don’t understand the question, well I do, but I don’t. The holidays, any holiday, in my case I focus on American cultural celebrations, are a large part of our social world. Be it, Christmas, Hanukkah, Diwali, Ramadan, Lunar New Year, etc. these are important events and to exclude them on purpose is doing a disservice to our novels and the worlds we are creating.
To be clear, I’m not saying all books need them or should have them.
However, for my stories I intentionally include holiday celebrations because, for me, it completes the world I’m creating. In ‘A New World – Contact’ aliens from another planet arrive on Earth. The story focuses on how both races relate to each other and how they learn from each other. How could I not include scenes that involve American cultural events? It gives me the opportunity to show these celebrations through alien eyes. I’m able to poke fun at us and our traditions. Why do we have Christmas Trees? Why do some people cut down living trees and others have artificial ones? How would you explain this to an Alien? I would expect any alien race to be fascinated with our social customs, why we do them and how we celebrate them.
In ‘The Calling’ an average human guy is called to become an Immortal (Vampire). I don’t focus as much on the Holidays in ‘The Calling’, but I do include them, because, again how do Immortals celebrate a holiday that is as old, or in a few cases younger, then they are? For me that is interesting and I hope it will be for the reader.
I’m not saying holidays should be the focus of every story, but when you’re writing a story, perhaps include a little holiday cheer. It can be used as a moment of calm before the storm or as a moment to poke fun at some of our more unique cultural events that we all share.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year