Halloween is almost upon us, and that can only mean one thing - annoying teenagers who aren't even in costumes wanting money and sweets from me all week.
Oh no, two things: annoying teenagers and horror stories.
This post is about horror stories, and is my contribution to the Coffin Hop blog tour - if you check out their site you'll see all the authors involved, and the best thing is they're all giving prizes away. As am I... read on to find out more.
But anyway, horror stories; ones told around a camp fire by a group of kids, each trying to outdo each other, each swearing their story is true. Stories called things like The White Lady; The Killer In The Backseat... and The Hook.
And despite all the literary sophistication that we horror authors try to bring to their tales, I like to think at heart we're all just kids around that camp fire, each trying to make people believe that no, really, this actually did happen.
But sometimes the stories we tell say more about ourselves than we realise:.
Some Stories For Escapists #4: The Hook
- “OK, I’ve got one, I’ve got one. There’s this boy and girl right, and they’re going somewhere in this car to get off with each other, like The Drop right? And…”
- “That’s where my brother goes with his girlfriend, when Mum wouldn’t let him in the home with her after…”
- “Your brother aint got no girlfriend, he just goes up The Drop with a Razzle!”
- “Right, so they’re up there and snogging and it’s all dark and he’s got his hands on her tits and the radio’s on and in between songs this guy says, the news guy, there’s been a break out from the local mental home, which is right near where they are. Some psycho's escaped, and instead of a hand right, he’s got this hook, real sharp, which he uses to kill his victims, rippin’ up their guts. That’s what the radio says, and they’re still snogging each other, but she’s scared now, typical girl, thinking the killer might be around. ‘Let’s go home,’ she says, ‘Get off me, I want to go home.’ He doesn’t want to but she keeps sayin’ it, ‘Get off, I’m scared, let’s go, get off me!’ So he eventually lets her go and speeds off, real fast cos he’s pissed off right. And when they get back they find, in the driver door handle, this ripped off hook…”
[They all stare into the camp fire]
- “Your brother really get her pregnant?”
- “Yeah. My parents gonna kill him!"
- “Didn't he use a johnny?”
- “He shoulda done it to her when she had her period. You can’t get pregnant then.”
- “No, aint it after she’s had it?”
[They all pause and stare into the fire]
- “You don’t even know what a period is.”
- “I do, my sister told me!”
- “What is it then?”
- “I aint telling you lot!”
- “Do they really bleed? The first time you… Do they really bleed?”
- “My mum’s gonna kill him.”
Anyway, competition time. As regular readers will know, I've had some great guest bloggers on here to celebrate the art of the short story. And I think horror is one genre particularly well suited to short stories; I love reading good anthology of horror stories by a host of different and varied writers.
So the competition is to make up your ultimate Horror Story Anthology. For every one that contains some stories I love, or that are new to me but that I rush out and buy, I'll give that person a free download of my horror novella The Shelter. And for the one I judge the absolute best, I'll also give a free download of my collection The Other Room. (All entrants are also very welcome to a copy of First Time Buyers but as that's currently free anyway that's not much of a prize!)
1. Leave a comment containing a list of the 5-10 stories that make up your anthology - you're favourite horror stories of all time
2. Any horror or horror-ish story welcome, as long as you didn't write it yourself
3. Anything from 100 to 15k words I'll consider a short story for the purposes of this competition
Good luck. And don't forget to check out the other authors on the Coffin Hop blog tour...!