Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What Frightens You?

What frightens you? What makes your blood run cold, makes your teeth chatter, scares you to death? Ah, yes, all clichés which writers hate. Hmmm, maybe clichés scare you off from reading a piece?

Does a little mouse darting across the kitchen floor scare you? How about snakes, spiders, bugs? All real things that can set a heart pumping.

Then there are the creatures like Frankenstein, monsters, zombies, werewolves. Are they fantasy or actually walking around in our world?

How about the staircase leading to the unknown, the face of the serial killer reflecting in your mirror, the hand reaching out of the grave, the bloody dagger on the floor of the car, the dark room containing mysterious sounds…

Does one of these scary things cause your heart to pound faster and your mind to whirl more than another? Is a mouse skittering across your toes comparable to spotting a Zombie? Are there various degrees of horror for you?

What scares you the most? Now, don’t say your mother-in-law!

A skilled horror writer can make even the tiniest mouse sighting become frightening to the reader. Using words to paint the picture in the reader’s mind and build the suspense allows even the mundane to take on the aspect of horror.

My best girlfriend laughed when I told her my book, Sunshine Boulevard, contained elements of light horror. She said you can’t have light horror. That’s like being a little pregnant. Scary is scary.  I tried to explain that it is light horror as opposed to dark. No torture, blood and guts.

I must admit the story does include some frightening stuff as well as secrets and suspense. It also has lighthearted comedy mixed in with the everyday lives of the folks in Florida’s senior golf resort community.
What frightens you? Leave a comment here to tell us.

Every commenter’s’ name will be saved in a handsome oak coffin for a drawing to win the PDF of my mystery/horror novella, e-book, Sunshine Boulevard. Be sure to leave your email address so you can be notified. Yes, that’s all you have to do to be a winner here at the J Q Rose blog. The coffin will be opened to draw out the lucky winner’s name on November 1. I promise not to disturb the body lying in repose. Good luck!

Now trudge on over to visit more blogs listed at the coffin hop website. You can win even more prizes!!

While you are hopping about in cyberspace, you're invited to join me at Jane Richardson's website for the One Link Lowdown  Jane asks fun questions and even makes me tell a fib. Hope to see you there!


  1. Thanks JQ! For pointing out how old I must be getting. Because when I think about it, I'm not sure anything really scares me anymore except the thought of something happening to somebody I love. And now that I think about it more, I sorta miss the tingles at the thought of the vampire outside the window....

  2. For me, its the narrow, steep staircase leading to the attack. Especially with a locked door at the top. And most especially,, once you get the door open, there's an octagon window with shutters letting in streams of sunlight. I've seen that used in several scary movies now, and just thinking about it gives me the creeps.
    Your story sounds so interesting! Here's my e-mail:

  3. Everything is scary when it pops out at you unexpectedly - a cliche the writers of horror movies rely on. That's what makes the mouse so scary when it runs across your toes. It's not the mouse itself, it's the fact that you weren't expecting anything to move, and all of the sudden this foreign object, this critter, pounces.

    erinoriordan (at) sbcglobal (dot) net

  4. Being buried alive. I definitely want to be cremated. I know, I know. Embalming would kill me off before I was boxed and buried. When I was a kid I went to "The Oblong Box" starring Vincent Price. That scared the crap out of me.

  5. Failure is the thing that frightens me most, however since that's not quite the tone you're looking for, my answer is electrocution. It's happened once, I seriously don't want it to happen again.

  6. I'm with Erin, a sudden unexpected movement of a mouse, spider, etc. sure does get the heart racing. I've also developed an irrational fear of step ladders as I've gotten older. I can climb ladders all day long without a twinge as long as the ladder is taller than where I'm climbing so I have something to hang onto, but put me one step up on a 2-3 rung ladder in the middle of the room & I'm shaking too hard to go up one more step.

    drainbamaged.gyzmo at

  7. What interesting comments and fodder for writing another scary story. Just thinking of Vincent Price and Anthony Hopkins scares me...

  8. Two of the scariest stories I've ever seen--one old and one newer. The first, Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher" staring Vincent Price. In the story, Roderick Usher's sister is accidentally buried alive and he can hear her trying to scratch her way out of the coffin. (shivers) The second story, King's "The Shining" (double shiver)has soooo many scary parts in it, that I can't even begin to list them. Yeah ... those are the types of themes that scare me.

  9. I don't like spiders, really dislike heights, I LOATHE clowns and have a mini heart attack whenever something jumps out at me.. even in the movies where you KNOW it's about to happen, but what terrifies me the most is the thought of something happening to one of my kids.
    Thanks for participating in the blog hop and for the chance to win. Your book sounds like something I would love to read :) at Gmail dot Com

  10. My three biggest fears: needles, heights, and lizards. I dunno why, but it has something to do with their suckered, sticky feet, their beady eyes, and the fact that they can lick their eyeballs. :shudders:

    Coffin Hopper

    Read my Coffin Hop post HERE

  11. I'm scared of noises coming out of thin air, like voices or children laughing, and yet there's no one else in the room.

    Happy Halloween and have a good blog hop:)

  12. I have one of the weirdest phobias I've ever heard of. I'm afraid of moths. People being afraid of spiders almost make sense -- some spiders are poisonous -- but what the hell is a moth going to do to me? What am I, a sweater? Still, I am paralyzed with panic if one flies into the room.

    Thanks for the contest! You can check my Coffin Hop giveaway out at my site, if you like. Happy Halloween!

  13. I think the only thing I am afraid of is Bees & wasps..even that little mouse doesnt really scare me but it is an ewww factor. But looking at the cover f your book..I would have to say that Flamingos really scare me.
    Happy Holloween


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