2017 was, in many ways, the roughest year of my life.
I went through two life-changing events within ten days of each other: the loss of my mother, and learning that I was going to be a father. Either of these things can turn your life upside-down. Both of them happening on top of each other threw me into an emotional spiral that took me quite some time to get out of. In some ways, I still haven’t — and probably never will.
When Christmas came that year, I struggled with writing my annual Christmas short story. I wasn’t even entirely certain I had it in me. Then, against all my better judgment, I decided instead to tackle an idea I’d had percolating for years: a 12-month experiment in storytelling in which Santa Claus would, once a month, come face to face with the Icons of the other holidays on the calendar. It’s a strange story, and one I look back on now and realize I used to work out a lot of things I was dealing with. And I serialized each chapter here, on my blog.
As Christmas 2022 approaches, I’m going to spotlight some of my older holiday-themed works, and so I’ve put together a little PDF of this story. This is the story as it appeared between Christmas Eve 2017 and New Year’s Eve 2018, complete and with only minor edits. If I ever decide to do an “official” publication, there will no doubt be more substantial edits, but I present it to you here as a sort of time capsule of the only sustained writing I managed to do during the most tumultuous period of my entire life. I hope you enjoy it.
2 thoughts on “An early Christmas present: Santa’s Odyssey”
[…] ripping off Taken, but these are the relevant parts.) I also wrote my annual Christmas stories, including a novella with a major subplot about a divorced dad reconnecting with his son and another Christmas short […]
[…] Mythology is another popular source to “borrow” stories from, which is why I tried to do it myself before Rick Riordan inadvertently kicked my teeth in. The Odyssey, for example, has been retold multiple times: the Coen brothers transplanted it into turn-of-the 20th Century Mississippi for their film O Brother, Where Art Thou?, DC Comics used it as the basis of the Adam Strange/Starfire/Animal Man section of their year-long experimental series 52, and a few years ago some schmuck from Louisiana replaced Odysseus with Santa Claus and tried telling his own version of the story. […]