Do you want to be a horror fiction writer? VI
Getting Started – write your story now!
The best way I’ve found to write my stories is to write the scene I am envisioning most vividly in my head. It doesn’t matter if the scene is at the end of your story, in the middle, or at the beginning.
I almost never write a story in sequence. Instead I write the most intriguing, suspenseful, or original parts then connect them together. There is some reason that you want to write this story. Maybe it is a couple of lines of dialogue – start there! Maybe it is a description of some creature or setting – start there! Writing the good parts first will ensure you don’t have a bunch of uninteresting facts and set-up that slow down your stories.
After you get the best few scenes that tell the story, only put in the other pertinent information – just enough to move the story forward. Don’t tell us who a character is. We will learn who the character is through the story and his/her actions, dialogue and feelings.
It’s amazing how many times I have written only those most important scenes and realized, I didn’t need much else.
Leave out the boring details:
You should never have to tell the year a person was born or their age. That’s reserved for autobiographies. Most people can deduce a character’s general age by the things they are doing, experiencing, and by the setting.
If taking place in a dance club or at some hip gathering, the MC is probably in their 20’s.
In a corner pub, singing When Irish Eyes are Smiling, they are probably 50 or older.
Teenage Children? mid-forties.
Working in a menial retail job, 20’s – working as an office manager, lawyer or foreman on a construction job – late 30’s to 50’s.
Of course, you may want to write a story in the style of an autobiography, but many people might find this similar to schoolwork and be bored reading it. I would be cautious about using that style.
Likewise, the time/era of the setting can be delivered in a similar manner.
GPS on your character’s cell phone – 2000’s
No cell phones – before 1990’s
Big Hair – 1980’s
Going to a sock-hop – 1950’s
Use vehicles, songs, television shows, celebrity mentions, etc. to further explain your time period. If I am writing something set in early 1900s or pre-1900’s I will often use my Poe-voice, a gothic style of writing similar to that day and age.
“I leave out the parts that people skip.”
― Elmore Leonard
“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”
― Jack London