The Four Elements of a Horror Story

Here’s a seasonally appropriate post about the horror genre written by Staci Troilo over on Story Empire.

Story Empire

BOO!

frightDid I scare you? Probably not. It’s pretty hard to take someone by surprise when you tell them in advance (in my case, by this blog’s title) you’re about to discuss horror and fright.

Or is it?

If that were true, horror legends like H. P. Lovecraft, Edgar Allen Poe, and Stephen King wouldn’t be household names.

So how do writers, working with only words on a page, manage to raise heart rates and goosebumps in their readers? They can’t rely on camera angles and creepy music to build suspense.

But that’s what the horror genre is all about, isn’t it? The buildup of suspense.

Because of Halloween, October is the month we focus on the macabre. Ghost stories, slasher movies, psychological thrillers. I’ve long been a student of the craft of writing, and this is the perfect time to analyze the components of a successful horror work.

The…

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