1. MockingbirdSymphony
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    MockingbirdSymphony Member

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    Tips for scary scenes?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by MockingbirdSymphony, May 29, 2008.

    I was talking to a friend of mine this evening, who is also writing, about her novel and she was stumped about how to write a scary scene. As in, suspenseful and whatnot. I don't really know either, since I don't write or read much in that area, but she requested that I ask you all.

    So, do you have any tips about writing scary scenes? Just in general is fine, because I don't know what hers is about exactly. Thanks for any help you can offer! I appreciate it (and I'm sure she will too).
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Supply the reader with information withheld from the character (there's an Egyptian cobra loose somewhere in the room), and drag out the scene, but with several points where the reader is SURE disaster will befall the character (he reached under the bed to grab his slippers, he walks into the bathroom rubbing his eyes, he flops down in the chair where we saw the snake a minute ago, etc.)
     
  3. Al B
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    Al B Senior Member

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    A lot of it is in the scene which takes place beforehand, having a safe scene beforehand emphasises the danger in the following one as a mood shift comes along, this is a common thing in horror movies, watch a few and you'll see it employed quite a bit. Much of it is in how you control the pace of your story too, that way you screw around with what the reader thinks he or she knows. So, cut the brakes on a car then have the potential victim change their mind and take the bus, so that the car becomes a ticking timebomb for later.

    Al
     
  4. GuitarSolo
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    GuitarSolo Member

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    Cogito is right. Drag out a scene and descibe minute details relevent to the scene.

    Drop vague hints of misfortune and danger. The scenes can get really descriptive and can be quite difficult.

    Try reading some Steven King or Richard Matheson to get an idea.
     
  5. MockingbirdSymphony
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    MockingbirdSymphony Member

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    Thanks guys. That helps a lot! :D
     

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