By Annette J Beveridge
Writing horror fiction is not just about capturing words to paper, if only it were that simple. It is about feeling the fear and portraying it so to entice the readers building tension and suspense as you lead them to the point of fear. When you write any work of fiction, you have to consider your potential readers, but when writing horror fiction, it is all about embracing the fear and getting inside the minds of those who will be reading your creative work.
Horror novel writers have time in which to build the fabric of the story, cleverly interlacing suggestions of fear as the plot unfolds. Short horror story writing is different, there is less time to build up to the moment of fear. It has to be portrayed in a way that will hook the readers.
Starting point when writing horror fiction
The starting point is all-important and this doesn’t just mean the opening sentence. You have to decide what you are going to write and consider the story as a whole. How in-depth will it be? What do you want to achieve? Your anticipated market audience is important too. You must know who you are writing for, and then, your words will flow effortlessly. Read up on the latest in horror fiction and consider the techniques and outcome. Is this the style you are aiming for? How did the writer convey horror? Once you have the idea meshed out in full and you understand your readers, you plan the story length and anticipated word count.
The elements of horror
Horror fiction has evolved but it is subjective. What scares you may not scare someone else. Consider what really frightens you and work to that remit. Do you want to craft gory, horrific scenes or hint at what is happening? Your target audience is likely to be very different so this is important. The amount of detail that you are going to go into will also depend on the word count. Ah, the importance of planning out the story before you start.
When writing horror fiction, don’t hold back from exposing your own fears. Let the fear ripple through you and really feel it. You can be as imaginative as you like and give creativity free rein taking your horror story in any direction that appeals. Keep one eye on your plan before you meander away from your initial idea. If this happens, you may need to rethink your story before getting carried away.
There is a lot to learn about writing horror fiction, especially if you are trying to build up a dedicated readership who will follow your stories and love them. You have to commit to it. Find your style and your voice. Write horror stories that captivate and terrify and then, you have the chance of getting your work published. If you want the insider scoop on writing horror fiction, CLICK HERE.
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