Shiver the bones of a poor, helpless reader by serving up a haunted tale. Make it so descriptive and real that it will wake them up from a deep sleep months from now, still sweating from the memory of your story.
There's an art to composing a scary tale. First, it needs to be real and believable. A setting needs to be created in the mind of your reader that will create just the right mood and anticipatory tension. Those who become engaged with your writing should be brought forward to the edge of their seats, fully aware, not wanting to miss a single detail.
The characters you develop should be unique and memorable, yet common enough that those who read can identify with them. "That could be me!" should pass through their minds as your plot is developed.
The right descriptive details will help characters and setting come alive. As this happens, your literary victim will be hooked and the story must be finished. At the point of no return, words are lifted from the printed page, then transformed into clear and distinctive images upon your reader's subconscious mind (for later review).
People are drawn in through equal amounts of fiction and non-fiction elements, with the reader not knowing exactly where the two intersect. Just a touch of the "bizarre" can be sprinkled lightly throughout your story for dramatic effect. This tends to keep the reader off balance, never sure whats going to happen next.
The climax of your tale should come quickly and without notice. It's most effective when the reader anticipates the end but is still surprised when it happens.
So, how about it? Give me a scary story!
May we prompt you?