Writer Advice: Tastes and Smells

27 09 2016

You can tell an experienced writer by the sensory detail. New writers concentrate on action. Over time, writers will add how things look and sound, then progress to hearts pounding against ribs and other physical sensations, then to how they taste and smell. The proper use of flavors and smells can evoke strong emotion.

I did not create these tools, as you can see. I am anxious to use these tools and will let you know what kind of response I get.

scaa_flavorwheel-01-18-15smells





Chewing Out From An Eyesocket Soon At A Bargain Rate

25 09 2016

and other sad fates await later this week! On the preliminary ballot for the 2014 Stoker Awards and ready for your eager eyes. Only $.99 this coming Friday.

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Listicles Can Help Writers

25 09 2016

Have you seen The Line-Up? It’s new website about noir, horror, true crime, and subjects close to my squirmy little heart. Most websites will have lists of this or that, but I find these lists on The Line-Up pleasantly surprising.

M.R. James gets respect from the more refined, but Sarah Waters doesn’t show up much. I liked “The Little Stranger”, though technically it was more a psychological gothic tale than a ghost story. Still, Waters researches the hell out of her period subjects and her descriptions did put me in the M.R. James neighborhood, which was cool seeing as she was born some decades after he died. “Hell House” is Matheson’s take on “The Haunting of Hill House” with his lurid pulpiness dripping off each page. The house’s history is delightfully over-the-top. Light chills like early King. I’m using this novel to help structure a work-in-progress.

Touch the book to see The Line-Up.

ghost-story-books-little-stranger

Once you’ve had a look at the ideas, let your mind wander. Is there an idea that strikes deep in you? Is there a way to make that idea more personal to you by applying it to your life experience? Did an image appear, or a piece of dialogue, or a character from another book or movie, or anything strike you? That’s where you begin.

Anyway, finding esoterica on lists comes in handy.

Like this list for “50 Most Haunted Houses In 50 States”. Some kind soul swept together and summarized 50 ghost stories for us to read and pick over for ideas!

hauntedplaces_markiocchelli

What could happen if a child abuser stayed overnight in the Viullisca Axe Murder House? Or if you were the ghost on the recording in St. Vincent’s Home? Touch Spooky House to see that list.

 

 





The New “Blair Witch” Movie…

15 09 2016

…reminds me of what is needed to make a realistic USA horror story: The Heavilly Armed.

 

SPOILERS!

I mean, we’re deep into Reel Three and White College Chick Rocking The Jeans is locked in a tunnel under the scary Witch House. Without any to-do, she unfolds a huge camping knife that wasn’t even implied in the first two reels.

Every human I know would have heard the Dreadful Wail on Night One, then walked around with that knife out at arms length for the rest of their damn lives.

I mean, I work in retail in a tiny rural state and I’ll bet I could go through the parking lot, break into the cars, and come back with Travis Bickle’s wet dream (before someone shot me).

There was a Dixie-Flaggin’ Redneck Couple in this movie. Was either one strapped? Did they have a hound dog or a trained Pittie? Nerp. The Cute College Black Couple? Any knives or even mace? Nowp. They did make the usual black-comic-relief-characters-have common-sense “Let’s get out of here” exclamations before being killed seperately BY TREES AND GRAVITY.

Which left the two suburban white kids, in case we didn’t know the target audience, here they are.

Would these weapons have done anything against a Blair Witch? Who knows? The B doesn’t have any vulnerabilities. Is she Satan-powered? Alien-powered? A ghost? Without any idea as to how to fight the B, where’s the tension?

One of these kids could have pulled out a Bible or rigged up some Predator style booby traps or crossed some streams or something. That would have been a movie.

This? Eeeesh, it was so bad, I thought James Wan had produced it.





Writing Advice: Noir and Locations

14 09 2016

This article about writing Noir is quite good! The novel I’m sending out right now to agents and publishers owes quite a lot to Noir, in that the protagonist is a down-and-out petty criminal grasping at a purpose in life. Of course, he’s being pursued by the physics of nature becoming sentient, but that’s another matter.

The plot sets him up for the final failure implied in classic Noir, but he earns one painfully burned hand on the ladder to redemption.

Touch the mook from Bernet’s “Torpedo” to learn more…10386749_485977168203033_9083383255132610930_n

and when better to discuss the importance of location than when considering Noir?

Noir demands moonless nights, jukejoints stinking of menthol, dirty summer streets sweating asphalt. This quirky nerd lady Rachel Aaron can tell you about emotional real estate and that it is all about location, location, location. Touch the classic Noir location of Mos Eisley Cantina for more.

MEC.JPG





A Ghost Report from the Daily Dispatch on March 11, 1884 — The Merry Ghost Hunter

12 09 2016

Blissville is far from blissful. The residents have heard spectral cries coming from Calvary Cemetery, near Saint Raphael’s Church. And a few citizens have witnessed a strange, melancholy woman — dressed in black and unresponsive to the living — walking the streets near the cemetery. Can August Heffner, a ghost hunter, solve the case? Each […]

via A Ghost Report from the Daily Dispatch on March 11, 1884 — The Merry Ghost Hunter





Research! Deathonomics!

7 09 2016

EmilysQuotes.Com-born-poor-mistake-die-death-intelligent-money-Bill-Gates

Your soul is worth $348 Million per year of life.

Your mortal existance is worth between $71,500 and $9.4 Million.

Your body is worth approximately $551,ooo depending on how much skin you have.

I read somewhere that based on amount of emotional stress your death would cause, and how much it would take to compensate for that amount of stress, your life is worth $250,000. Can’t find the link.

Isn’t that alleged Gates quote nauseating?  Here’s another one, Alleged Gates:

“We sold what? To who? ” – IBM








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