Writing In The Dark – Horror Writing Prompts

It has been a while, a really long while, since I’ve read something that’s creeped me out. I think the last thing was Algernon Blackwood’s novella The Wendigo…and we’re going back ages now.

I thrive on scaring myself half to death, so being unable to find satisfyingly scary stories – or poems – has produced an ever widening void in my life. I know that sounds extremely fucking dramatic, but I find sustenance through reading horror, and I have done since I was little.

So I’m going to try and devote more of my time to writing horror, to writing the terribly dark stories and poems that I’d like to uncover. I know this will provide a different sort of nourishment to the kind I’m searching for, but it’ll be nourishment nonetheless.

It’s been such an absolute joy to hear from those of you who’ve been using the prompts I’ve shared thus far, so I thought I’d share some of the ones I’m currently using to write horror.

Horror Writing Prompts

  • Write about a day and night in the life of a werewolf. How does your character’s voice (the unique way in which they express themselves) change when the transformation is afoot and once they are fully transformed? Perhaps it could be their first experience of being a werewolf, or maybe it’s been their life for decades.
  • Write about a ghost watching her husband invite someone new into their home for the first time. Perhaps she could be enraged by what they do together, or it could be that she’s encouraging of it.
  • Write about a hunter haunted by all the animals he’s killed. Alternatively write from the perspective of a slaughter house worker whose life becomes consumed with the animals whose lives he’s taken.
  • Write about a child who is able to understand everything the animals are saying, and the things they are talking about are terrifying and dire.
  • Take one of your favourite fairy stories and switch the roles of the characters, so the sweet become sinister, and the sinister become sweet. You could go with Hansel and Gretel. The witch could actually be a lovely, old lady and the kids could be malicious cannibals.
  • Write about someone (or something) dying and being reincarnated as something they feared in their previous life.

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