1. Dilfill

    Dilfill New Member

    Mar 13, 2009
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    Orange, California, United States

    How do I have a sense of suspense throughout my script?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Dilfill, Aug 28, 2012.

    Hello all, so I've been writing a psychological horror script and I'm finding it difficult to add suspense. What I mean is how do I keep the audience or reader on edge even when noting scary is happening. Anyways if anyone would like to see a sample of what I've got so far, you are more than welcome to, if it will help you better answer to what I'm looking for.

    Thanks for you're time!
  2. Pickled_dirt

    Pickled_dirt New Member

    Aug 12, 2012
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    In my opinion. Drag it out. Feed the reader little bits and pieces along the way, just enough to keep them reading, then unleash a twist, tie in your plot points or bring them to an apex. That's usually enough to keep me going.
  3. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

    May 20, 2012
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    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    Here's how Hitchcock described suspense -
    Four men are sitting at a table playing poker. When suddenly, after fifteen mintutes there is an explosion
    - turns out there was a bomb under the table.
    This isn't suspense it's a surprise because the viewer wasn't expecting it.

    Take the same scene with an important difference, prior to the poker game we see the bomb
    being placed under the table, the timer set to 11 AM and a clock ticking away in the background.
    The same scene now becomes intense - will the hero leave, will the timer fail, will something interrupt the game
    and save them?
    That's suspense.

    It's hard to offer advice - not seeing a sample of your work. But keep your hero in danger.
    Keep throwing him in situations that force a decision that must be made within moments.
    Back him into corners. Make him paranoid and lead the viewer off on a red herring. Let him
    make a decisiont that doesn't work in his favor kicking off a feeling of what-will-he-do-now.
    Suspense is about life and death decisions - a drawing out before a confrontation, fight or
    end result.

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