Tag Archives: horror

Tell a Story With Only Dialogue

So, I’ve been going through my files from when I was in school, earning my MFA in Creative Writing, and I came across this exercise I had done in which I was supposed to tell a story with only dialogue. I believe it had to have at least two characters, though I can’t say for certain. But I wanted to share it with you because it was kind of fun to read it again. You all might enjoy it, too.

~~~~~~~~~

“Did you hear that?”

“Hm? Hear what?”

“I… thought I heard something.”

“Like what?”

“…Like rustling in the trees.”

“Haha, What?”

“It’s not funny!”

“It’s a little funny. I mean, there’s wind and animals, and then there’s trees. It’s only natural for there to be rustling.”

“Whatever! I saw this movie. You know, that one where the people get stuck on the dirt road in the middle of Hicksville and a bunch of deformed inbreeders murder them in the most unbelievable, gory way possible.”

“Wrong Turn?”

“Yah, that one!”

“Well, we didn’t take any wrong turns, so relax.”

“Sure we didn’t, but the tire blew out just like in the movie.”

“Ha! Okay, now you are just being silly. The tire blew out on its own, not because someone sabotaged us. Good thing I remembered to bring the jack this time.”

“Maybe I should go back down the road and check that no one sabotaged us.”

“You want to walk down the creepy, dirt road by yourself?”

“Well—Well, no, but I thought maybe you could come along. It would only take a minute.”

“Oh, come on. I’m right in the middle of changing the tire. You can’t possibly be asking me to stop what I’m doing to come along with you while you feed your paranoia.”

“When you put it that way, you make me sound crazy.”

“You are being crazy right now. We’ve got 3 hours until the ceremony and only a couple hundred miles left to drive. I’d like to shower and shave before accepting my award.”

I bet if I’d asked you to look at some smelly, old rocks I saw back there you’d agree.”

“Were there rocks back there?”

“That’s not the point!”

“What is the point, then? …Wait. Did you hear that?”

“You heard it too this time?”

“I heard something, yes.”

“I’m telling you, it’s raving, mutant hillbillies! Can’t you hurry with that spare?”

“It’s a process, you know. It doesn’t just magically happen.”

“Did you see that?”

“What?”

“The man! Did you see him?”

“Just hang on another moment. I’m almost finished.”

“HURRY! HURRY! I think he’s coming closer!”

“What are you going on about?”

“Is that a gun?”

“He probably wants to—”

“AHHHHHHHH!”

 

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Top 5 Horror Games

My most recent release was Misbegotten, which is a horror novelette about a video gamer who is being haunted by a mysterious and disturbing video game. It’s one of my favorite stories I’ve written so far because it involves a couple of things I really love: horror games and let’s players. So, I thought it would be fun to give you all my top 5 horror games list. I’m sure this is totally debatable, but they are the ones I’ve played and find to be the best. Feel free to tell me your favorites in the comments! Also, if you want to watch someone else play the game, I’ll include links to my favorite youtube gamers for the specific games.

CPCorpse Party

I’m sure I’ve gushed about how much I love this game. Corpse Party is not a typical horror game. It’s more of a weird hybrid of game and novel. Since I am an author and an avid gamer, I  feel like it is the best of my two favorite things. (Well, two of my three favorite things. Movies are the third.) Corpse Party is about a group of classmates who perform a charm that pulls them into a deadly and disturbing alternate version of a school. They are stalked by ghosts and creeps, and other “monster.” The best part of this game is the horrific death scenes. They are well-written and disturbing. Honestly, the novelization is the greatest asset to this game. Even though there is some hilariously awkward dialogue in the game, it’s easy to feel for the characters. It’s sad when a character dies, and players find themselves on the edge of their seats, holding their breath and hoping that their favorite isn’t dead, and players (or watchers) breath sighs of relief when characters turn out okay (not for long!). Storytelling is all about making people feel something, and Corpse Party does that with amazing skill.

If you want to watch someone play this, I suggest Cry (Cryaotic). His play through is the absolute best, and of course, his voice is made of sex. He gets really into the narrative, and does an excellent job with reading.

 

FFFatal Frame

Okay, this game freaked me the hell out. The atmosphere was intense and eerie; and viewing ghosts through a camera was just too terrifying. Honestly, I don’t know how I made it through this game alive because I can’t even watch a play through without my heart racing. I really love the idea of defeating enemies with a camera, but oh man is it scary! There’s nothing scarier than looking down a hallway and seeing nothing, only to lift a camera and see creepy ghosts lunging toward you in the camera viewer. *shutter* Just thinking about it makes me want to run and hide.

Now, I can’t suggest any gamer on youtube because none of the players I watch have done a play through. However, I think Cry did do a few videos before discontinuing, so you can take a look at those.

 

shHDSilent Hill (Series… minus Homecoming)

It’s really hard for me to give a specific Silent Hill game for this part because all of them, excluding the horrible piece of crap that was Homecoming, have their intense and creepy moments. However, it is clear that there was a pretty clear distinction between the first three and the subsequent games. The first three are much more frightening than the rest, probably because they were made by the original Japanese team, but there were great things in some of the later games, too. The idea that you are just a regular dude (and girl on a couple of occasions) with no power, other than the ability to wield a flashlight and a pipe, is pretty frightening. Each installment has its own best attribute. The first and third game had Alessa, two had pyramid head,  four had some creeptastic hauntings and the concept of being trapped in an apartment, and Shattered Memories had this excellent ambiguity with a very different game play from the others.

Also, as I mentioned on Facebook, I’m thrilled with PT. the playable trailer for the possible next installment Silent Hills. Not fond of the name or Norman Reedus (I like the guy, but I feel like they are using him to build hype), but I think it could potentially be a bad ass game. And finally, some fun Silent Hill play throughs to watch would be PewdiePie for SH1, Game Grumps for SM, and TheRadBrad for SH2.

 

CoFCry of Fear

This game has my favorite opening game play of all time. The rooms are engulfed in complete darkness, and the player must lead the character through with only a camera as a light source. So, to see (and move), the player must take a picture to set off the flash. Imagine all the creepy things lurking in the pitch darkness that can be viewed only for a tiny fraction of a second. It’s wonderful! ..in that intense, creepy way. There are some really messed up bad guys and psychological undertones that remind me a bit of the Silent Hill games. Overall, it’s a creepy game that’s fun to watch and play!

Some good play throughs of this game include Cry’s CoF play through and PewdiePie’s play through, which is pretty fun to watch because he’s Swedish and so is the game.

 

FN@F

Five Nights at Freddy’s

Who knew it was possible to make a game about being a night guard for a creepy kids place with animatronic characters even more scary. But they did! I mean, let’s face it, animatronics are kind of creepy by themselves, so add the element of being trapped in camera room at night with limited power makes it even more frightening. But, oh no! It doesn’t end there. Let’s add the element of MOVING animatronics that try to murder you. You can’t move, but they can! These are the things nightmares are made of, guys! While this game is pretty new, it’s an outrageously frightening game. It doesn’t matter how prepared you are for the impending doom or the jumpscare or the power outage… it will get you. EVERY. TIME. Heartattack + Nightmare = This game. Pirate Cove guy and Teddy Bear will leave your pants wet. Just saying.

There are two particularly great play throughs of this game: Yamimash’s videos and Markiplier’s videos.

Of course, there are hundreds more amazing horror games, but that would be too much for one post. Some other really awesome ones worth mentioning are Ib, which is pixel horror; Amnesia: Dark Descent, which took me forever to beat due to having to constantly take breaks; the Resident Evil series; and The Last of Us.

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Horror Sequels Part III: Good Horror Sequels

So, now that we’ve talked about the bad and the ugly in terms of horror sequels, it’s time to wrap up this series with a positive note. If you missed the first two posts in the Horror Sequels series, in which I discuss horror sequels I’ve seen and horror sequels so bad I refused to watch them, then check them out after you’ve read this installment about good horror sequels.

I can’t say for certain that any of these are of the same standard as the first in their series, but I find them to be sequels that I have watched numerous times and still enjoyed, not because they are stupid or fun, but because they are good movies.

 

aliensAliens

Even though this movie did not have the same level of creep and cinematography as its predecessor, it is still a great movie. Sigourney is just as wonderful in this one as she is I the first, and it has Michael Biehn. What more does it need? Sure, we also see the creepy kid cliche, which worked in this movie. Ripley was no longer vulnerable enough, so the kid was added to help build that suspense and likability to the Ripley character. At least Newt wasn’t that child trope where you really wished the monster would eat her and put us, and the other characters, out of our misery. Add in a badass mech battle and a dripping Queen, and we’ve got ourselves an awesome movie. Strangely enough, I was occasionally more creeped out by Bishop than some of the other things in this film.

 

insidious2Insidious Chapter 2

I’ll admit, I had my hesitations on this particular movie. I loved the first Insidious, and as you can tell, I’m extremely opposed to having unnecessary sequels. This one was a movie I almost said no to. Honestly, I gave it a try only out of curiosity, and there’s something about Patrick Wilson that I really enjoy. Sometimes, he can be so creepy, but he’s also pretty charming in a weird way that I can’t quite put my finger on. Insidious II had a great twist to it that made it worth while as a sequel. I won’t spoil it, but I love the fact that this series focuses on the idea of astral projection rather than some other typical horror trope.

 

 

scream2Scream 2

The Scream series is one of my favorite slasher series; I’ve probably watched all of the movies (except 4) a million times. As far as sequels go, Scream 2 was a satisfying watch. Was it as good as the first one? I wouldn’t say so. However, it had some cool things going on. One thing I loved was that there was real effort to keep the identity of the killer secret. Just like in the first movie, it was just about red herrings and dramatizing the obvious choice. The Scream movies always tried to actively keep the audience guessing. Also, Timothy Olyphant is one of my favorite actors and plays a fantastic psychopath (sociopath?). I will have to say, though, that I just about table-flipped when a certain dorky horror movie buff was brutally murdered. That was one death that I’m still mad about… even though the movie is over 15 years old.

 

Other sequels that are good include Silent Hill Revelation (which was way more true to the game franchise), Halloween H20, and Saw II, among others. There are also sequels that I watch out of loyalty to the franchise… at least until they get too stupid. For example, I enjoyed all of the Resident Evil movies even though a couple of them were a bit… uncouth. Are there sequels you enjoy? What about ones that surpass the first?

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Cover Reveal: Misbegotten

NOW AVAILABLE!
Get Misbegotten on your Kindle
Get Misbegotten on your Nook

So, I decided to show off the awesome cover for my next short story (novelette?). It’s called Misbegotten, and it’s about a video gamer who is being tormented by a mysterious video game that is a little too real. This story is expected to be available in May.

Misbegotten Cover

 

David Keegan (AKA ‘DavidScreamsLikeAGirl’) is a famous horror video gamer on the world’s largest video-sharing website. He makes great money doing something he loves, and his fans can’t get enough of his girly, over-dramatic screaming. One night, a mysterious fan gives him a bootleg copy of a game called Misbegotten. All of his viewers insist he play, but the clawed, ghostly antagonist David calls ‘the witch’ makes the whole endeavor terrifying. Even when he stops playing the game, she haunts him… Awake, asleep, the witch doesn’t care. All David can think about is the reoccurring message: “She will kill you.” Continuing the game could mean the end of his sanity, but stopping could mean the end of his life.

**Misbegotten is a novelette of 10,500 words (or 37 pages).**

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Roadside Wraith Cover Reveal

NOW AVAILABLE
Roadside Wraith on Kindle
Roadside Wraith on Nook
Roadside Wraith on Kobo
Roadside Wraith on iTunes

So, I know it has been a while since I posted, but I come baring gifts! A lot of crazy things happened during the last few months that made it difficult to be as active as I usually want. I’ve been doing my “day” job a lot more lately, trying to balance my projects, dealing with the holidays, hospital stays, and a move. They aren’t great excuses, but it was one of those situations where a lot of small things added up rapidly and have been making it difficult on me. I’m back, though, and hopefully with some fun stuff.

I’ve been working on continuing that flash fiction piece I wrote during the Halloween festivities last year. It was originally called “Wraith,” but since then, I have changed it to “Roadside Wraith.” It has a beautiful cover done by Yoly Cortez from Cormar Covers. The expected publication date is sometime in the first week of April. The cool thing is that if you sign up for my newsletter, you will have a chance to buy it before anyone else does!

Roadside Wraith Cover

After a heated argument with his long-term boyfriend, Greg speeds down a deserted country road in the middle of the night to get away. Despite his relationship problems, he finds himself focusing on the disturbing drive home rather than the anger he feels.

Kelly could kick himself. After the love of his life stormed out on their weekend getaway, he is left with a sinking feeling in his gut. Numerous attempts to call and reconcile with no luck makes him more determined to track Greg down… but what he finds is worse than he could have imagined.

**Roadside Wraith is a short story of 3,500 words, or 13 pages, long.**

 

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Five Netflix Movies Perfect for Halloween

As everyone is gearing up for the most haunted holiday of the year, I thought it would be fun to talk about some movies that are readily available on Netflix. Most, if not all, of these movies aren’t big name films and most people have probably never heard of them. If you are looking for some great Netflix movies perfect for Halloween, then I would recommend any of these. I will, however, add a disclaimer that some of them are B horror movies, while others might seem like they were done by a group of college students. Low budget doesn’t mean the movie doesn’t have a cool story or some interesting ideas/elements. So, I’m picking these ones because they are the ones that people might not think to watch, but their uniqueness is what makes them so awesome.

 

OccupantThe Occupant – This movie reminded me a lot of the Silent Hill 4 video game. This young man won’t leave his apartment, but continually more weird and disturbing things happening. It’s very difficult to tell whether there is something evil in the apartment or if it’s just the guy losing his mind. The Occupant isn’t a fast-paced gorefest or anything, but it takes its time building the mania. I consider this one a Netflix gem even though it’s not perfect.

thePossessionOfDavidOreillyThe Possession of David O’Reilly – Okay, so this movie is a bit weird. From the first time we see the demon, the the end when all hell breaks loose, this is a strange and ambiguous concept. (You’ll notice ambiguity is my favorite horror motif.) These three friends are being tormented by a foul demon that only one of the characters can see. It’s basically about them trying to survive this thing that thrives in the darkness, but their only defense is a guy who is increasingly becoming a liability.

theSignalThe Signal – This is a strange movie that has a slightly different twist on the concept of zombie. People become violent and crazy, they murder each other, and it’s insane, but this isn’t about the walking dead or anything. Basically, the main girl is cheating on her husband with this guy who ends up being the hero. We can see the husband is a total ass, and even though the two lead characters are flawed, the guy goes to incredible lengths to find and rescue the girl. Think Shawn of the Dead meets Stephen King’s Cell. It’s this bizarre movie, but you spend the entire time hoping this guy reaches the girl.

theWardThe Ward – Now, this one isn’t exactly horror in the traditional, Halloween sense, but it’s an interesting movie nonetheless. The Ward has this strangeness to it, and by the end, it makes you go, “Say whaaaat?” Basically, this girl is in a psych ward because she burned down a house. While there, she meets other girls with mental problems while being haunted by a ghost. Eventually, the girls start disappearing. I really love John Carpenter movies, and this one is no exception. It also has a pretty epic ending, but I don’t want to spoil it!

TheTravelerDVDThe Traveler – I know this one is a lot more widely known than most of the others I’ve listed, but I thought I would mention it. Val Kilmer is pretty cool in this even if he’s looking a rough lately. So, Val Kilmer turns himself in to the police, claiming he is a murder… but the murders haven’t happened yet. And yet, while he is locked up, the victims begin to die in the exact manner in which he claims. It’s a pretty cool movie, but it’s a bit predictable.

 

Really, I wanted to put From Within on this list, but sadly, it disappeared from Netflix instant within a day or so of my typing this entry. I was very sad about this. Of course, there are some others that are fun to watch, but are really terrible (in a good way!). For example, Chain Letter. This movie is hilariously bad, but the ending is pretty epic.

At any rate, that is my list! Please let me know what you think if you watch any of them or if you’ve already seen any of them. Also, if you haven’t signed up for the Week of Creep giveaway, yet, then please make sure you do it before Thursday!

 

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Wraith – Month O’ Screams

My flash fiction story, Wraith, is now live on Alex Westhaven’s blog. Head on over and celebrate horror with us! As a bonus, don’t forget to sign up for the Month O’ Screams giveaway because there is a mini giveaway ending today and a HUGE grand prize drawing on Halloween.

Also, stay tuned for a very special Halloween post from me here on the Cole Knightly blog. I’ll be posting a second part to the Wraith story. My beta readers insisted that I write more, so I must oblige!

Finally, don’t forget that I’m giving away some great prizes for Week of Creep. You can sign up below!

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