The CoffinHop is coming for you in 7 days…
Wander down to the CoffinHop Boneyard…
The Penultimate Annual Horror Event
24th Oct – 31st Oct
60 Horror Authors/Artists/Poets
8 days of Fearsome Fun
8 days of Generous giveaways/sweepstakes/contests
Terrifying tales, Petrifying Poetry, Spine-tingling stories, Freakish Flash Fiction, Heart-Racing Horror…
Join the Hop and support your favourite Horror Authors/Artists/Poets
Get ready to Kick those heels up and dance a dervish across the graves…Get ready to do some CoffinHopping…
Ah, October, when leaves fall and trees reach their bony fingers to the sky, when I think of Snoopy and the Red Baron and candy sorted into little piles on my bedroom floor.
How sad to be all grown up, denied the races across darkened lawns. Nevermore to shriek in delighted terror when Freddy or Jason or Frankenstein pops from the neighbor’s bushes.
But wait! There’s still a way for us all-grown-uppers to share in Halloween thrills. It’s Coffin Hopping we will go. Trick-or-treating at digital doors, where writers of horror will open their bags of goodies to share with those who dare to stop by.
And don’t be afraid to stop back for seconds…or thirds…or even sevenths. In our neighborhood, Halloween lasts seven days.
The fun starts tomorrow (October 24) and continues through Halloween. I’ll be posting several times during the next week with Halloween thoughts, reviews, and possibly some new…
1.) Re-imagine Santa’s visit to drop off gifts by putting a #Creepfest spin on it. Max words: 200
Santa pulled hard on the reigns and the reindeer clomped to a stop on the asphalt parking lot in front of the mausoleum. The moon was a bright white circle staring down as the jolly man stepped off his sleigh. He stood in the quiet night and surveyed the rest of the cemetery around the ornate stone structure. Bells jingled on his ankles, wrists, and the end of his thick red stocking cap as he walked to the back of the sleigh where massive burlap bags were stacked. The sound of the bells echoed over the shadowy headstones lining the fields around him. He cried his trademark cheer. “Ho! Ho! Ho!” The grounds seemed to move and come alive as dirty, rotting hands reached up out of the ground. Santa strolled through the grass unloading his gift of brains he had collected the night before into their undead, clenching hands. As he grabbed the final bag off his sleigh, one of the reindeer snorted as he skipped past it. A tall stone door with angel carvings at the front of the mausoleum creaked open. Santa slung his sack over his shoulder and marched inside.
[Note to bloghoppers-Aside: So just a reminder…Erik’s Flash Fiction is the second entry into the Creepfest Challenge…Let me know what you think of it and check back here tomorrow for the second offering as you are going to help pick the winning Creepfest author at the end of the tour. Please let me know, in your comment below, how you rate this first story, in the challenge, by the wickedly, talented Erik Gustafson out of 5 stars (5 = Brilliant).]
2.) On Santa’s list this year, would you be naughty or nice? Tell me three ways you got on to either the naughty or the nice list.
I would be on the nice list I think. For one, I help people with disabilities all year long, I am great dad and I haven’t been convicted of any crimes this year!
3.) Who is your favourite villain in a classic fairy-tale and why?
Ursula the sea witch from The Little Mermaid. She is cunning and evil, she knows exactly what people want and preys upon that weakness to steal their soul. Absolutely beautiful woman has charm and can sing! Plus who wouldn’t want a pair of electric eels as pets?
4) If you were a character in “The Christmas Carol”…who would you be and why?
I would be Jacob Marley because it would be fun to come back from the dead and mess with people, and maybe try to convey a message or help someone too would be alright too I guess!
5.) What gift would you leave under the tree if you were the Christmas Grinch?
I would find the children’s list, get everything on the list and mangled, shred and smash each and every gift then place them neatly under the tree with bright bows on them.
Thank you Erik. You chilled me with your flash fiction…bbbr..never going to look at Santa’s sack of gifts the same way now. I must say Jacob Marley is also a favourite of mine. You have to love those clinking chains and padlocks. Remind me not to invite your Grinch to my house 🙂 Happy Creepfest! ~ Kim
The Reader Challenge
~13/12 – 23/12~
I am going to ask you a question and you are going to answer it in the comments. Only 1 entry per person is allowed. However, to be eligible you need to:
after all this is done: tweet that you have been visited by #GhostofCreepmasPast and tag me @AuthorKimKoning
Also make sure that you are hopping to the other blogs in this #Creepfest Blog Tour
These 5 tasks will make your entry eligible for the prize.
So drumroll…Here is the question challenge.
Question: The Ghost of Creepmas (Creepfest’s Christmas) Past is making a house call and this week he is visiting your house. He takes you back through time to your worst Christmas Nightmare. (This can be real or imagined.) Tell me about it in 200 words (max).
I will choose a winner and a runner-up on the 24th.
The winner will win an ebook copy of Tales for Canterbury + $10 Amazon voucher
The runner-up will win a $10 Amazon voucher.
For more info on Tales for Canterbury (which includes my debut short story “The Ring of Fire), click below…
1) HAVE A SPOOKY FUN TIME!2) INVITE YOUR FRIENDS AND SPREAD THE WORD!3) THIS TOUR STARTS: Monday, October 24, 2011 at Midnight (PST) THIS TOUR ENDS: Monday, October 31, 2011 at Midnight (PST) Winners will be drawn and posted November 1, 20114) MEET AND MINGLE WITH THE AUTHORS! EXPERIENCE A NEW DESTINATION AT EVERY STOP! PARTICIPATE IN EVERY SITE’S CONTEST AND BE ENTERED FOR CHANCES TO WIN MULTIPLE PRIZES! EVERY BLOG VISITED IS ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO WIN!
5) PARTICIPATION AT ALL SITES IS RECOMMENDED, BUT NOT REQUIRED. THE MORE SITES YOU HOP, THE BETTER YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING PRIZES.
6) DID I MENTION TO HAVE A SPOOKY FUN TIME?
***Authors have full discretion to choose an alternate winner in the event any winner fails to claim their prize(s) within 72 hours of their name being posted or after notification of win, whichever comes first. Anyone who participates in this tour is subject to these rules***
My next WIP is a psychological thriller and it involves psychological twists and a cold-blooded killer. This killer curdles my blood. Already the killer haunts my dreams. But the worst thing about this character is that I am struggling to name him. He does have a moniker that he will be known by in the story but he does need a name.
Let me tell you a little bit about him. He is a psychopath. He is exceptionally cruel and sadistic. He is also a perfectionist who never leaves any trace of himself at the crime scene. He is fastidiously clean, almost surgically I would say. He preys on people that he feels are “fallen”. He is incredibly alluring and seductive. He is hard to say “no” to. By the time his victims realise he is the final person they will see, it is too late and they are taken by surprise. This man could be anyone. He might be your friend, your brother, your father, your lover, your husband or your colleague. He stalks you like a silent lioness. Do you know his name?
So…this is where you blog-hoppers come in. I need you to put your creative hats on and spin me a first name and surname for my sadistic killer.
The best name will win three ebooks by three phenomenal authors. (I will be announcing the names of the authors and their books closer to Halloween but believe me you will want these ebooks.)
The best name will also become the name of my sadistic killer.
You need to be subscribed to this blog to enter (so join up if you are not already) as well as leave your best answer (along with your email address for winner notification) in the comments on any of this week’s posts on this blog. You also need to have visited and commented on at least 5 of the CoffinHop bloggers.
The winner will be announced on this blog on 5th November.
Have you ever tried watching a horror or thriller without the sound on? I guarantee you that you will not have a problem turning off the lights and going to bed. It is the creaks and the strange sounds, the eery music and whistling wind that truly send the shivers down our spines even before the villain has come onto the scene ready to kill. The core element for horror and thriller is the theme music and the background noises.
How do we convey this horror element and scare factor into writing? How do we create shivers down spines with ink on a white page?
We must write out a theme music. How do we do this? We write using all of our senses. We bring all of the character’s senses into the story. We bring in a deep POV (Point of View) where by writing from the character in the scene, we effectively put the reader into the scene. Their heart beats as quick as the characters. All of a sudden they are not sitting there reading a harmless book…they have been transported into a situation of being hunted and not knowing what was hunting them. Our characters senses and emotions are the writer’s theme music for the story.
Here is an excerpt of one of my own stories to demonstrate. Tell me if your heart beats quickened.
Did your heart skip a beat? Were you there with the character? Now I didn’t tell you who the character is or where exactly they may be. I just wanted you to feel this character’s fear and desperation, her mind stretching for an escape but knowing it is too late.
Now character’s emotions and senses are not the only way you can set your story’s theme music. What happens if you want to set the scene when the horror has already passed? What happens if your key character in the scene cannot move, feel or even speak? What tools does the writer have then? You have the setting. This is when you use your setting. This is the time when you put a hard focus on the body lying broken. The horror will edge across your spine like a crescendo of violins.
Here is an excerpt of another of my stories to demonstrate…
“She lay on the ground, a confusion of twisted limbs and red sand.
The sun was slowly starting to break over the ocean’s rim. Already the seagulls were flying overhead, their harsh cries echoing in the noise of dawn. The girl lay very still and quiet, limp like a rag doll. Slowly she cracked open her eyes, seeing only red sand. Closing her eyes again, she moved her tongue around her mouth feeling for broken teeth. The sand beneath her cheek grated painfully into her bruises. Her left hand, held in a fist, was bent over her back. Carefully she uncurled her fingers. A whimper escaped as sharp pains shot up her shoulder and into her neck. Trying not to move her arm, she lifted her hand slightly off the cool sand. With a sharp gasp, she dropped her head back onto the ground. The sun started to punish her bare legs with its rays. She opened her eyes again and watched as a tear fell from the tip of her nose into the sand.Suddenly tired, her eyes blurred. The light faded and she fell into a black hole.
That was how they found her: a confusion of twisted limbs and red sand.
This scene unlike the first does not have the action element but the theme music is still loud and clear. Something horrific has happened and the heart of a reader is tugged.
How do you compose the theme music of your story? How do you make ink on a page send shivers up the reader’s spine? How do you crawl into the head space and imagination and pull out horror in your reader? What are your best tools? Look at your own writing and listen to it instead of reading it. You will hear the music. You will hear the creaks in the floor. You will hear the soft tread of the killer.
Now I will leave you with the creepiest theme music I know. As you listen, remember how important the music of a scene – both visual and written – can be to converting the true horror. Here is Angelo Badalamenti’s “Dark Water” Suite. Enjoy the chills…