Three Ways To Know When To Finish A Comic Or Story Project

2017 Artwork Knowing when to finish article sketch

Learning when to finish a collection of stories or webcomic updates is a skill which can take a bit of practice. Ideally, you want to finish whilst you still have at least a tiny bit of enthusiasm left for the comic or fiction project.

Whilst I now seem to have something of an instinct about when to finish when it comes to my various webcomic mini series (which typically hover around 8-12 updates per mini series these days), I was woefully inexperienced about it when it comes to writing short stories – as evidenced by the low quality of the final story in the group of short stories I wrote for last Halloween during a return to a storytelling medium I’d abandoned quite a bit in recent years.

So, these tips will mostly be based on what I’ve learnt from making webcomics and from the mistakes I made with my short fiction series last Halloween.

1) Always plan: One mistake I made with my Halloween short stories was doing virtually no proper planning before I started writing them. I’d mostly just think of the opening sentence and possibly the premise a while before I started the story, and that was it. I had the idea that I wanted to write ten stories, but that was about it.

Whilst this allowed me to come up with some neat ideas and endings that really surprised me (like in this story or this story), it was just as likely to mean that my stories turned into a confusing mess (like this one).

If you plan your stories and/or comics out before you make them, then you’ll get a general sense of their size and scope. You’ll be able to tell if your project is long enough for you to finish it before you run out of enthusiasm (always plan your projects to be shorter, but with room for expansion if they go well).

You also won’t have to worry so much about writer’s block in the middle of the project, since you’ll already know what you’re supposed to make. This also helps to prevent the wild variations in quality that can happen in unplanned projects.

2) Know your limits: You’ll have to learn this through bitter experience (eg: failed and/or unfinished projects), but many people have a limit to either how long they can focus on a single project or how many projects they can keep going at any one time.

This is why, for example, all of my webcomic mini series are less than 20 comics long. When I’m making a mini series, I’ll usually go all out and make something like 2-3 comics per day (even if I only post one per day). However, I also know that I usually can’t keep this up for more than a few days (usually less than a week). So, I plan the length of my mini series to take account of this fact.

If you know your limits, you can work within them and you’ll be more likely to actually finish the projects that you start. Likewise, you’ll also be able to alter any project ideas you have so that you can stay within your limits, rather than risk running out of enthusiasm halfway through the project.

3) Always leave wanting more: If you find that you miss one of your creative projects after you’ve finished it, then this is usually a good sign. It means that you’ll want to make something else like it in the future.

If, weeks later, you find yourself wishing you could have added a few extra comic updates or stories to your project, then this is also a good sign.

However, exhaustedly slumping over the finish line like you’ve just run a marathon is probably not going to make you want to make more comics or write more fiction for a while at least.

So, make your projects – especially the ones you’re really excited about – a little bit on the shorter side, and you’ll find that you have enthusiasm and energy left over for future projects.

For example, my Halloween fiction series should probably have only been four stories long instead of ten stories long. I was truly, properly, enthusiastic and inspired for about 5-7 of the ten stories, but the other 3-5 were mostly there because I was determined to write ten stories. If I’d just written four stories (but not necessarily the first four in the collection), then I’d have finished whilst I was still in an enthusiastic and inspired mood.

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Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

How To Take Inspiration From Other Things (Whilst Writing Fiction)

2017 Artwork Taking inspiration for fiction article sketch

Although I’ve talked about how to take artistic inspiration before, I thought that I’d take a more specific look at how to to take inspiration whilst writing fiction. Since fiction is a non-visual medium, there are some fairly significant differences between taking inspiration for fiction and taking inspiration when making art, comics etc….

As with making art, comics etc… you should always have as wide a range of inspirations as possible. You should always, if possible, mix your inspirations together too. This is very important, for reasons that I’ll explain at the end of the article.

But, for the sake of simplicity I’ll start with explaining how to take inspiration from just one thing (even though, for a very good reason I’ll explain later in the article, you should have more than one inspiration!)

Unlike making art or comics, you have a slightly greater degree of freedom when it comes to designing the settings of your stories if you’re inspired by visual media (like films, comics etc…).

Although I am not a copyright lawyer and nothing in this article should be considered legal advice, one general principle of most copyright laws across the world is that they only protect highly-specific expressions of ideas, and not basic/general ideas and concepts.

Despite the oppressive and restrictive reputation that copyright has, it is designed to allow people to take inspiration, provided that they do something new and different enough with that inspiration.

For example, your sci-fi story can include a detailed description of a futuristic spaceship crewed by both humans and aliens. Your spaceship could also have faster-than-light travel, touchscreens on the walls and/or sliding doors between each room. These are all general ideas and concepts which no-one can copyright.

But you can’t call your spaceship the USS Enterprise. You can’t call the engine a warp drive. The alien crew members in your story can’t be called “Klingons”, “Vulcans”, “Andorians” etc.. Your spaceship can’t consist of a saucer with two engine nacelles attached to it. You can’t say that the touchscreens use the LCARS operating system etc.. Why? Because those are all highly-specific (and therefore copyrighted) details from “Star Trek: The Next Generation”.

Because the setting of a story consists of images translated into words (which are later translated back by the reader), you can actually make your setting descriptions relatively close to the images that have inspired you – provided that you don’t use highly-specific details!

The same holds true for characters too. In prose fiction, you can make your characters “look” similar to TV show, film, game etc.. characters that you like. You can even give them similar personalities too. But you’ll have to give them different names and different backstories. Again, general traits are a free for all, but highly-specific details are not!

However, with the story itself, you can only borrow general story types. So, look at the things that you really like and ask yourself “what type of story is this?“. Is it a story about a love triangle? Is it a revenge story? Is it a story about a time loop? Is it a story about virtual reality? etc..

Once you’ve got your answer, come up with a new (and different!) plot that also fits into that general category. It’ll still have the same atmosphere as the thing you’re inspired by, but you won’t be ripping anything off.

But, you might say, isn’t all of this bordering on plagiarism? Well, it is only borderline plagiarism (in the moral sense of the word, at least) if you take inspiration from just one thing. But, if you blend inspirations from as many things as possible, then you’ll ironically end up with something fairly original.

Going back to my “Star Trek: The Next Generation” example, if the main character of your sci-fi story is a bald man from Belgium called “Captain Ricard” then this might possibly technically be an original character – although everyone will probably realise that it’s a blatant rip-off of Captain Picard.

However, if you were to blend elements from other fictional characters (even ones from the same TV show, if you’re particularly lazy) – I don’t know, let’s say that Captain Ricard is also a telepath who has bionic eyes – then it’ll probably seem at least mildly more original. But, the more different things you blend and the more ideas of your own that you add to your inspirations, the more original it will be.

So, remember, taking inspiration is perfectly fine (as long as you avoid highly-specific details). But, the more inspirations that you blend together and the more of your own ideas that you add to the mix, the more interesting, distinctive and original your story will be. So, use more than one inspiration!

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Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

Four Quick Tips For Writing Fast

2017 Artwork Tips For Faster Writing

Well, since I was in a slight rush when I started writing this article, I thought that I’d give you a few tips about how to write fast. Most of these tips will work regardless of whether you’re writing fiction or non-fiction, but there are some slight differences.

So, let’s get started.

1) Practice your typing (or write it by hand): As I mentioned in this other article, you don’t need a touch-typing course to learn how to type fast (although it might help). All you need is lots of practice.

But, even if you still type by poking each key individually, then just keep doing this until you get faster. Try to use two fingers, one on each hand for each side of the keyboard.

When you’ve learnt to type fast, words don’t feel like a collection of individual letters. Each word feels like a pattern of movement instead. You move your hands in one way to make one word, and in a different way to make another. Almost like playing chords on a guitar.

Likewise, if you can, use a word processing program without a spell-checker (I use WordPad) and, when you’ve finished, copy your writing into one that does have a spell-checker. This might sound convoluted, but going back and correcting spellings every couple of minutes when you’re writing can be a huge distraction (and not the good kind, like in the third point on this list).

But if, like I used to, you write faster by hand than you do with a keyboard, then write it out by hand first. Yes, copying up the first draft is a bit of a hassle, but it also gives you a chance to edit what you’ve written and it’s less difficult than having to write it for the first time.

2) Simplicity (or not): Unless you’re really on a roll, you don’t have time for either fancy prose or informal prose, or for prose that is too short or too long when you’re writing fast.

The emphasis when writing fast is on just getting your ideas down on paper or on the screen. Go with the style that feels the most natural to you, regardless of whether you feel more comfortable with formal or informal writing styles. Regardless of whether you love to write at length or if you prefer shorter things. Go with what feels natural.

If you’re worried about using repetitive speech tags (eg: “he said”, “she said” etc..) or repetitive sentence openings, then don’t worry. Although it doesn’t always look very elegant, it’s easier for the reader to absorb and skip past repeated things than it is for them to read ten different words or descriptions for the same thing.

One trick for reducing repeated sentence openings without losing writing speed is to have a few well-practiced stock phrases that you can throw in at the beginning of sentences in order to keep things interesting (eg: “Therefore..”, “Another…”, “Likewise…”, “Whilst…” etc..). It makes everything sound a bit like an old school essay, but at least it keeps things mixed up.

As for speech tags, just go with “he said” and “she said” as much as possible. Using too many other types of speech tags too often just makes the writing sound pretentious or it makes the writer sound inexperienced. So, keep it basic. This will also save you having to consult a thesaurus when your characters start talking.

3) Write in bursts (or don’t): Often, when I’m writing quickly, I don’t just sit there and do nothing but writing. I’ll fire out a few sentences and then I’ll pause to read a little bit of something, pause and do nothing, or pause to change the song I’m listening to. Then I’ll go back and fire out another few sentences.

Having lots of very short breaks might sound like the opposite of what you’re supposed to do when you’re writing fast, but it gives you a little bit of time to gather your thoughts. The little breaks also help you to keep your attention focused on what you’re writing, provided that they don’t last for too long (eg: try to keep them under a minute).

Different people have different attention spans and different ways of writing. So, go for what works for you. If you find that you focus better by doing nothing more than staring at what you’re writing, then do this. If this tends to make you feel worn out or bored, then try taking micro-breaks every few sentences.

4) Stock ideas and writer’s block: Of course, you can be experienced at writing quickly, but it won’t help you if you don’t know what to write. So, either prepare some ideas in advance or have a stock of ideas that you can dip into at any time.

This stock can include things like topics you know a lot about, things that fascinate you, types of character relationships, interesting places, your own memories etc… If you’ve got a good enough stock – and you probably have, even if you don’t realise it yet – then writer’s block can be a bit less of a challenge than it might otherwise be.

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Whew, I wrote the first draft of this article in just under half an hour! Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

Four Reasons Why Stories, Comics, Films Etc… Can Have Alternate Endings. (Plus, An Alternate Ending To One Of My Short Stories :) )

2017 Artwork Alternate Endings article sketch

Well, when I was writing one of the short stories that were posted here last Halloween (and, yes, I write these articles very far in advance), it ended up having both an “official” ending and a previously unpublished alternate ending (which I’ll include at the very end of this article).

Since alternate endings are something that occasionally shows up in the special features segments DVDs and even in other formats like comics (although this is fairly rare). I thought that I’d look at some of the reasons why they appear. After all, what’s the point of having another ending?

Well, here are a few reasons (out of many) why this happens:

1) Something went wrong: The reason why my short story ended up having two possible endings was because the very first ending was absolutely awful! You can see it for yourself at the end of this article.

In summary, the final plot twist lacked any kind of instant impact and there was also a plot hole so large that you could drive a bus through it. If I didn’t want to ruin the entire story, I needed to come up with another ending. And I did.

So, alternate endings can often happen because something has gone so wrong with the original ending that the writer needs to replace it with something better.

2) It’s a byproduct of the creative process: Even if a writer or a comic maker doesn’t actually make an alternate ending for their latest project, there’s a reasonable chance that they’ve probably thought about at least one or two of them.

Coming up with a good ending can be one of the most challenging parts of writing a story or making a comic.

After all, a good ending needs to either give the reader a sense of resolution, provoke a strong emotional reaction and/or make them eager to read the next thing you make. It’s very easy to write a mediocre ending if you aren’t careful (and this is a mistake I’ve probably made a few times).

As such, when you’re planning something, it’s possible that you might think of a couple of way that it could end. You might even plan for your story or comic to end in one particular way, only to think of a better idea a while before the ending actually needs to be made.

3) Other people don’t like the ending: Even if the ending is really good, it might be something that the audience, publishers, film studios etc… might not like. People who have no experience with telling the original story might think that they know better than the writer and, if they have the power to, might take it upon themselves to alter the ending.

Even though this is a much rarer thing than in the 1980s and 1990s, there are plenty of Hollywood films from that time that have alternate endings purely because uncreative studio executives insisted on tampering with the film if they felt that the ending was too ambiguous or pessimistic. “Blade Runner” and “Army Of Darkness” are the classic cinematic examples of this trend.

4) Retconning: If you’ve never heard the word “retcon” before, it’s an abbreviation of “retroactive continuity”. What this means is that, if a story that was planned as a stand-alone story ends up becoming something larger, then the backstory of later stories might be changed in order to reflect this.

Likewise, if a writer revisits their earlier works, they might also alter details of the original story in order to make it fit in better with the later ones. This can result in alternate endings.

For example, the author David Morrell wrote a novel called “First Blood” that ended up being turned into a film of the same name. The book and the film end in very different ways. But, when the film got a sequel, Morrell was responsible for writing the novelisation – which resulted in an author’s note explaining that the second novel follows on from the ending of the first film, rather than the ending of his original novel. In other words, the original ending to the first novel is now an “unofficial” alternate ending.

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Anyway, as promised, here’s the alternate ending to the short story I posted here last Halloween. This ending begins directly after the shopkeeper’s line of dialogue that ends with”….You’re probably best staying in here as long as possible.”

Steve burst into laughter. I found it hard not to laugh too. Sitting behind that counter all day probably gave her time to think of all sorts of clever tricks to play on the customers. It’s what I’d do in that situation anyway.

Finally, Steve said: ‘Good one!‘ before taking the receipt and walking away. I thanked the woman, she just stared back wearily and handed me the clothes. I caught up with Steve outside. He was checking his phone – the clock on it had suddenly jumped forwards twenty minutes.

So, how do you think she did it?‘ I asked. ‘If you noticed, neither of our phones had any signal too. I’m guessing that a faraday cage was probably involved.’

Whatever, I just need to stop off at the offy before we get home. We need wine too.‘ He looked at the off-licence across the road. Smiling at me, he strode over the kerb. It must have been the noise, or possibly even instinct, but my arm shot out and I pulled him back seconds before a red car whizzed past inches from his waist.

He hyperventilated for a few minutes. So did I. Finally, he burst into laughter again and said: ‘No fate but that which we make for ourselves, huh? I knew that shopkeeper was having us on! Anyway, let’s get some wine. I can’t drink too much tonight though, because of that bloody business trip tomorrow. Would you believe that I have to car-share with Trish from accounts. She practically lives on Twitter! I mean, I’ve never seen her look at anything other than her phone.’

‘You’ll be in #hell with a #hangover, I guess ?‘ I laughed.

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Anyway, I hope that this was interesting 🙂

Does Your Fiction Writing Style Change If You Haven’t Practiced For Quite A while? – A Ramble

2017 Artwork Does Your Writing Style Change article sketch

Last Halloween, I got back into writing fiction after spending a while (probably less than a year) where I didn’t really write prose fiction. Before that, I’ve had other times where I didn’t write fiction for 1-2 years.

So, I thought that I’d look at the question of whether your writing style changes if you don’t write fiction for a while.

In short, it both does and doesn’t. When I wrote my Halloween stories, I noticed that they contained a mixture of writing styles rather than just one consistent “style”.

Several of them contained elements from various older versions of my writing styles – for example, this story sounds a lot like something I would have written in 2009-10 and this one sounds like a slightly improved version of something I would have written in 2005-7.

As well as this, some stories also sometimes contained elements from the slightly formal style that I use when I write these daily articles. This was especially interesting, since I found that I could write some stories a lot quicker if I made them sound a bit like a non-fiction article (like I did in this story and this one).

Not only that, my regular non-fiction writing and art/comic making practice also meant that I had all sorts of techniques for dealing with writer’s block/ uninspired moments that I didn’t have when I used to see myself primarily as a fiction writer.

So, some skills can transfer from other creative things that you may have been doing instead of writing fiction. This may or may not affect your writing style.

In the end, whether your writing style will or won’t change if you haven’t written any fiction for a while all comes down to experience and practice. If you’ve been doing other writing-related things in the meantime, then this will probably have some effect on your writing style.

Likewise, if you’ve read anything that uses a writing style that you really like, then parts of that style are probably going to seep into your own writing style when you get back into writing again.

However, if you’re out of practice, then your natural instinct will probably be to “pick up where you left off”. In other words, it’s very likely that you won’t completely lose or forget your old writing style. Because of all of your past experience with writing, you’re probably going to unconsciously end up using a similar style to the styles that you used to use.

Plus, if you haven’t practiced for a while, then your style is probably going to have all of the same flaws that it used to have. In my case, this is an annoying tendency to use rather “functional” narration if I’m writing fast. Likewise, I sometimes tend to over-use certain descriptions and sentence structures. So, you’ll probably end up keeping most of the flaws from your original style if you’re out of practice.

In addition to all of this, you have to take the fact that you haven’t practiced into account too. If you practice a skill regularly, then it soon becomes fast, fluent and intuitive. It becomes something that is almost second nature.

This feeling can go away a bit if you haven’t practiced for a while. As such, don’t expect the very first thing you write after you haven’t written for a while to be as flowing, eloquent or polished as the things you used to write.

Getting back to that level of skill and that distinctive style may take a little bit of practice, although it’ll probably take considerably less time that you would have to spend if you had no prior experience.

Still, this is probably different for everyone. I’ve been talking a lot about my own experiences and trying to find general lessons in them. But, I guess that the only real way to see if your style has changed or not is to try writing something.

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Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

What Does The Expression “Kill Your Darlings” Mean ? (Plus, An Exclusive “Deleted Scene” From One Of My Short Stories!)

2017 Artwork What does 'kill your darlings' actually mean

When I was writing one of the short horror stories that appeared here last Halloween, I was reminded of a very famous writerly saying – “kill your darlings”. So, I thought that I’d explain what it meant – in case you’re puzzled by it.

All the expression basically means is that you have to look at your story, comic etc… as a whole and trim out any parts, no matter how much you like them, that either slow it down or don’t fit in with the rest of the story.

It means that, for the good of your story, you have to edit everything ruthlessly – especially your favourite parts of the story (these are the proverbial “darlings” that you have to kill).

The main reason for this is that it can be very easy to get caught up in the “cool” or “fun” parts of your story. If you aren’t careful, you can waste hundreds of words on inventive, but needless, metaphors and similes without even realising it.

Likewise, you might want to show your characters just hanging out because it seems like a cool idea – but, if it doesn’t do anything to advance the plot, it has to go!

Plus, if you’re written a really cool part of the story, but you find that it either conflicts with the rest of the story (or can only be included with the addition of lots of convoluted connecting narration), then it probably has to go too.

Remembering that you have to “kill your darlings” is a way to remind yourself to look at the story as a whole. It’s a way to remind yourself that even a really cool sentence can often damage the pacing or the style of your story. It’s a way to remind yourself that every scene should be relevant and streamlined.

And, yes, it can be difficult to do, but it will improve your story.

For example, the short story I linked to earlier originally had a totally different introduction.

A couple of sentences from it survived into the final story, but – despite spending a while writing it – I realised that having 300-400 words of plot-irrelevant introductory dialogue and descriptions (in a location that wasn’t even a major location in the story) would ruin the pacing of the story. So, it had to go.

Still, I kept a copy of it for posterity. Yes, the dialogue includes a bit more characterisation and slightly more humour. Yes, in a longer story, it might have been an interesting scene to include in the middle of the story. But for the very first 300-400 words of a 1000-1100 word story, it was just impossibly slow and stagnant. See for yourself:
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“Festivals Are Grim” By C. A. Brown – Deleted Scene (unfinished):

Three things are certain in life. Death, taxes and rain at festivals.‘ Gemma grinned at me, as she reached into the chest pocket of her oh-so-retro neon green and bleeding-eye pink cagoule.

The rain rattled on the roof of the tent like tommygun fire in an old movie. Through the gap in the entrance, there was nothing but white static and blurry people. Over the noise, Gemma’s phone quietly plinked into life.

Shit! No wi-fi. Have you got any?‘ She muttered.

I reached into my bag and pulled out my battered old phone. ‘Only if you’ve got a modem.‘ Gemma rolled her eyes and looked out at the rain again. We’d expected rain, but this was really taking the piss. Even Glastonbury didn’t get this much rain!

Tapping her phone uselessly, Gemma said ‘Is there anyone good on? Or should we just spend the day here, bored out of our fricking skulls?

Got any green?

I’m out. Shared the last of it with that cute emo guy last night. Yes, I know, emo! It’s ironic though – I mean, the guy is totally into good music. He just looks like an emo because, well…‘ Gemma smiled.

It’s hot?‘ I sighed. Gemma chuckled. She was probably right.

Anyway, how the hell are we going to see the setlist without any wi-fi? You’d think that they’d put in an extra server or whatever.

They gave out a brochure.‘ I said, scrambling through my bag. Once I’d found the brochure, I smoothed it out and we examined the setlist. The main stage was an absolute no-go area. It was all daytime filler- bands that no-one had really heard of. The headliners wouldn’t be on for hours. The alt stage seemed a bit better – at least the bands actually had vaguely cool-sounding names.

The alt stage?‘ Gemma rolled her eyes.

It’s in a giant tent. The main stage isn’t. This rain isn’t going to stop any time soon and we’ve almost run out of booze here.‘ I shrugged.

Gemma looked at the half-empty water bottle of vodka in the corner, before turning her phone off and dropping it into her cagoule pocket. I put my jacket on and we stepped out into the rain.

The alt tent wasn’t too far away

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Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

Four Quick Tips For Writing Very Short Horror Stories

2017 Artwork Very Short Horror Stories

As regular readers probably know, I write these articles very far in advance. So, this is why I’ve only just got round to talking about the collection of very short horror stories that were posted here last Halloween.

Seriously, I’d written the first two of them the morning before I originally wrote this article. I finished the third one a couple of hours after writing this article. The first three short stories can be read here, here and here.

Different writers work best at different lengths and, with me at least, the shorter a piece of fiction is – the better. So, I thought that I’d provide a few tips about how to make the horror genre work in stories that are approximately 500-1000 words long.

1) It’s like telling a joke: The best ultra-short short horror stories often have a similar structure to a joke. After all, jokes are just very short stories that are designed to elicit a strong emotional reaction. They have a set-up and a punchline.

When writing a very short horror story – start with a slightly “ordinary” (or less-scary) series of events at the beginning, with only a dramatic opening sentence or two to hint at the horrors to come.

The first half to two-thirds of your story should almost be a different story altogether. Then, in the last part, introduce something new that either changes the meaning of the first part of the story, or which takes the story in a creepily different (but not too different) direction.

Or, just introduce something really shocking and horrific in the last few paragraphs (the horror writer Ryu Murakami is an expert at this, albeit within the last few pages of novel-length stories).

2) Descriptions: Because of the smaller amount of words that you have to work with, you can’t rely on an elaborate plot or complex characterisation.

As such, these kinds of stories work best when they are more descriptive than anything else – when the narrator or the main character is more of an observer than a participant in the events of the story.

So, write stories where the main character witnesses something unusual. Write stories that masquerade as newspaper articles. Write first-person stories where it feels like the main character is quite literally telling a short, and disturbing, anecdote. But, above all, focus more on descriptions than on anything else.

3) Writing style: Very short horror stories need to move fast. They need to grab the reader and keep them hooked for the few minutes it takes them to reach the shocking conclusion.

As such, your writing style should probably be very slightly more on the “basic” side of things most of the time. Kind of like it is in this article (as opposed to my usual verbose and rambling style).

This doesn’t mean that you have to dumb down your story – but it should sound a bit like an ordinary person telling a story, or a journalist writing a newspaper article.

The best way to learn how to write like this is probably to read at least a few modern thriller novels (which often make expert use of this style). If I had to recommend just one author whose novels will teach you all you need to know about this writing style, it’d have to be Lee Child.

Save the elaborate metaphors, scary similes and poetic descriptions for the really disturbing parts of your story. They’ll stand out more, when contrasted with the more basic prose that you’ve written.

4) Imagination: This is the oldest piece of horror fiction advice in the book, but it’s especially important in ultra-short horror stories. Things are scarier when they are left to the audience’s imaginations. Since you only have a few hundred words to work with, it’s often easier to only show a few details of something and leave the audience to imagine the rest themselves. It also makes your story seem larger than it actually is.

Even if your horror-writing sensibilities are fairly splatterpunk – you don’t have the time and the space to fill your ultra-short horror story with lots of elaborate grisly descriptions. So, choose the most shocking or most unsettling parts of what you want to describe and leave out the rest. Remember, your audience’s imaginations will fill in all of the other gory details.

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Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂