Things That Go Bump In The Night And Other Scary Ideas

photo credit: Great Beyond via photopin cc

photo credit: Great Beyond via photopin cc

Writing horror stories can be enjoyable but there is always one thing to keep in mind before you start. You need to be sure that the idea is really unique and not something that you saw or read in the past and managed to store in the back of your mind. That can be the downside of writing about things you love, it’s not always as new and fresh as you think it is.

Setting the Scene

When finding something to write about try to find something that is genuinely frightening. It can be tempting to choose a personal phobia, but if it is an unusual phobia readers won’t identify with it and if it is a popular one there are probably books out there already. Make sure that details are in order and you don’t get events and people mixed up. Keep it simple as if you can’t follow what you are writing how will the readers. There is a lot to be said for keeping a few steps ahead of yourself and the plot. While there is nothing wrong with throwing readers a curve ball from time to time, it will help if you always have one eye on what you are writing and one eye on the next chapter. Knowing what you want to happen later on can make it easier to write the chapter you are still working on

Grab the Attention

Intrigue the readers from the minute they pick up the book. If things get a little difficult in the middle readers will often carry on, but if there first chapter is tedious they will give up. It does not matter if it is an interesting character or a cliff hanger right at the beginning – grab their interest as soon as you can.

At one time it was necessary for writers to make sure that they were well organized before they began to write. With modern equipment there is the option to put down every bit of detail you can think of and sift through it later to make sure it is interesting and important. It is easier to delete the parts that are not needed anymore that to try and remember that vague idea you had weeks ago. Horror readers love detail and will want the story to be graphic. Keep them gripped and wanting more. It may be easier to scare people with films, but the written word can still intrigue and entice.

Stay Focused

Always explain what happens to people and at the end of events. Readers don’t what to have to reread sections to make sure they have not missed anything. Be realistic with the setting as there are some places that just won’t be as scary as others. Make it sensible and if you are making a seemingly everyday setting the center of the action explain why everyone should fear the place.

And Finally

Once you think you have finished, go through it again. Make alterations, add as much detail as you can but make sure it is relevant detail. Don’t spend more time writing about how the barn door creaked in the wind rather than expressing how the characters felt.

This article is by Luke Casey, a professional freelance writer and an upcoming novelist. He says he writes all kinds of articles and essay for magazines, blogs and newspapers. His hobbies include reading and gardening.