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#140718 - 01/27/05 08:08 PM Important elements of a good horror story?
Justin D. - Horror Lit Host Offline

Registered: 12/27/04
Posts: 42
Loc: Southwestern Colorado
Hey all!

What do you think makes a good horror story? Is it the plot, the characterization, the themes? Yes, I KNOW it's all of them, but if you had to choose one, which one would you choose? Can you think of other themes? Give examples? Share your horror-ble experiences with the rest of us! (Bad puns need not apply)...
J. D. Davis
BellaOnline Horror Literature Editor

#140719 - 02/06/05 05:43 PM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
RoseDesRochers Offline

Registered: 02/01/05
Posts: 128
Loc: Canada Ont
Hello Justin well I think vivid scenarios, strong characters, realistic dialogue, and terror so real the reader won't question if the story is fiction. Mind you I can't write like that lol. I'm a poetess but I admire those who can <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Edited by Rose DesRochers (02/06/05 05:44 PM)
Today's Woman

#140720 - 02/07/05 01:35 PM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
Judith, Football editor Offline

Registered: 10/26/04
Posts: 1436
Loc: GA
Horror stories that can be real are the best. Something that happens through normal things makes you think about the story everytime you do whatever it is. Those are the best.
Judith Hodges
Today in History
Classic Film

#140721 - 02/16/05 04:29 PM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
JanetBoyer Offline

Registered: 04/01/03
Posts: 3698
Loc: USA
I totally agree with Judith. This is why Stephen King books eventually got old to me. But Hannibal Lecter, for example? Ack!

#140722 - 02/17/05 07:52 AM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
BiblBasixEditor Offline

Registered: 10/06/02
Posts: 764
Loc: Chandler, Arizona
To me the most horrific stories are those that I can't quite grasp. The ones that leave me pondering HOW something could have gone so wrong.

I love REAL stories about REAL people who have strayed into the realm of the unrealistic and then acted upon those irrational thoughts and feelings....to me thats true horror...
Jenna Robinson
Bella Online Bible Basics

#140723 - 05/29/05 05:36 AM It`s simple . .
teich Offline

Registered: 05/01/05
Posts: 20
Loc: South Africa
You need a character ( preferably a perfect model ) who you can associate with. If you don`t believe in the main character, the rest is pretty much useless really.

#140724 - 08/29/05 05:59 AM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
musicalmom Offline

Registered: 06/26/05
Posts: 435
Loc: Flowery Branch, Georgia
I got to where I liked Dean Koontz (liked - LOVED!!!) way more than Stephen King for that reason. Most of his stories you kind of went...maybe? And he always had that 1 character that your heart just rooted for.
Michelle Taylor
Why me? What did I do to deserve this?
(go on, ask)

#140725 - 09/09/05 01:04 AM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
Shaun Offline

Registered: 09/09/05
Posts: 99
I think characters you can believe in and feel worried for make the best horror stories. If you don't feel scared for the character, then you don't care what happens to them. No matter what form the horror takes, if you don't feel for the character then the horror is diminished.

#140726 - 09/28/05 04:53 AM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
Carnivora Offline

Registered: 09/27/05
Posts: 7
Loc: Yorkshire, N.England
There is also the mysteries that happen at the beginning/middle which keeps a grip on the reader. It makes you want to find out the answer to those puzzles, why people did this, why did that happen and so on. It doesn't have to be one puzzle but several others. Sort of like cliff hangers.

I also think a good story depends on the main character but there's one problem. A lot of mainstream horror books tend to have main characters that are so boringly average people that I can't relate to them and give up on reading the book.

#140727 - 10/02/05 05:48 PM Re: Important elements of a good horror story?
mama2manykidlets Offline

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 16
i have to agree that an element of realism is nessecary but not too real..i like koontz for his believeablity but i like King for his single element of reality..for example while the good v. evil element of The stand is pretty unlikely (the dreams, the god v. deamon, etc..)the chances that the US goverment is manufacturing a deadly virus like the one in the story are pretty darn good!

i think that you can't pick one element to be most important..every element of a story, any story are important to that particular tale.
Dee,Mama to Rose(11) Ivy-Jane(8) Lily (8) Davin (5) Ash (4) Marri (4) Dahlia (2) and Heath (9mo.)...TTC #9!

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