Exercising creativity: ‘Overkill’ magazine prepares for Halloween with themed writing event

From Monday, Oct. 7, through Friday, Oct. 11, “Overkill,” Allegheny College’s student-run literary and art magazine, collected short five-word horror stories in the Henderson Campus Center lobby.

“We came up with a couple different ideas for what we wanted to do this month,” said Jacob Opie, ’22, “Overkill” prose editor. “Five-word horror stories sounded like a good way to encourage and inspire people to write more and be creative. Five-word horror stories are a quick and easy way to be creative, have fun and celebrate Halloween.”

Some of the submissions included “I saw my reflection blink,” “It’s dark … there’s something here” and “He never saw it coming.”

“We wanted to branch out to the local campus community … to get everyone in the spirit of the season,” said Taylor Black, ’20, president of “Overkill.”

This type of event is the first of its kind for “Overkill,” according to Black.

“We usually do open mic nights in Ground for Change, but we wanted to branch away from that to incorporate the campus community more into what we do,” Black said.

The popularity of the five-word horror story tabling excited members of the “Overkill” executive board, Opie and Lauren Isaacs, ’22, event manager and public relations chair for “Overkill.”

“I think this has really helped us get on the map of clubs at Allegheny,” Isaacs said. “A lot of people aren’t aware (that) the ‘Overkill’ literary magazine here exists. If you are an avid writer or if you love photography, you are always welcome to join the club. And we have gotten new members from this tabling event.”

“I’m excited by the idea that (the five-word horror stories tabling event) will make people more aware of our club and want to be, if not necessarily involved in our publication directly, at least involved with future events we might put on,” Opie said.

This tabling event is leading up to the “Overkill” haunted house event on Oct. 25.

“We are collaborating with Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honor Society, and (Allegheny’s chapter of) United States Institute for Theatre Technology, and we are going to have a big haunted house in Oddfellows,” Black said.

The “Overkill” magazine comes out once a semester during finals week. The theme for this semester’s issue is “Oversaturated.”

“(This theme is) basically a critique of the oversaturation of media and politics, mixed with some (science fiction) elements,” Black said.

“Overkill” accepts submissions in writing, art and photography, according to its website.

“We’re always looking for new submissions,” Opie said. “People don’t even have to include their names, either. They can submit anonymously if they’d like.”

“Overkill” will continue to accept submissions to this semester’s issue through mid-November, Black said.

“I’m super excited about this semester’s theme and to see how it will turn out,” Isaacs said. “We have some great editors in the club who will do such a great job editing all the submitted pieces, art, poems and prose.”