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Old 02-29-2012, 03:16 AM   #1
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Elements of Horror Put into Practice

I proposed this idea to some of our horror hounds last week and an interest seemed to be there. So now I'm throwing this out into the main forum to see if it floats.

You may have seen (or even participated) in the horror monthly prompts before. Well, this is something a little like that...only not really.

One of the best things about the monthly prompt challenge (IMO) is that it pulls together a dedicated group of writers to work on something for a specific period of time, and then holds them (more or less) to critiquing one another in SYW--like a small critique circle.

A couple of the limiting things about the prompt challenge is that it seems to have morphed into a "short story challenge" (and not all of us want to write short stories). AND some of us don't need any new ideas. We are already up to our eyeballs in our own ideas.

So, what I'm proposing is a similarly structured monthly challenge that offers two things:
  • a dedicated group of critters
  • a focused topic (horror specific) that can be applied to ANYTHING you're working on (current short story, old short story, new short story, novel, scene, etc.)
What are the possible "elements" to be attacked each month? Greg started a thread many moons ago called Bare Bones of Horror. That's one place to see the type of things I'm thinking we'd work on. Except, rather than a discussion thread (as Bare Bones is), I'd rather us put these elements into action. Hence the title: Elements of Horror Put into Practice.

Some of the technical stuff regarding how it'd work:

  • This won't be led or facilitated by anyone.
  • It will rotate monthly as far as who comes up with the "element" to practice.
  • Greg (who has committed to reviving the BB thread) may or may not mirror us in any given month. So, there is a potential union between the two threads in that way.
  • There wouldn't be a voice of authority or an expert in the Elements of Horror Put into Practice challenges--just all of the participants weighing in on each others submissions to say whether it achieved what we were looking for that month...or not. And if not, we might share why and/or give suggestions for how to make it better.
  • If people want full-sized crits on all of the elements of their submission, that's fine, they can say that when they post in SYW--but primarily I'd like it to focus on just evaluating the ONE element we are focusing on. (actually, we'll probably choose from two elements each month, but more on that later...)

What "elements" would be practicing?
Aside from the large general "elements" like Horror specific Grammar & Syntax and Setting in Horror (two of the things Greg's discussed in the BB thread). I was also thinking of more basic things like:
  • This month work on a fight scene.
  • This month work on a death scene.
  • This month it's a vampire feeding/turning/whateverelse vampires/zombies/monster-of-your-choice do.
  • This month it's the whatever-other-key-element-that's-crucial-to-writing-a-horror-story.

...and so on.

No obligations and...misc. stuff I couldn't find a place for in this:
  • To be clear, there is no obligation to use anything out of the Bare Bones thread, or to participate in, unless you find it helpful.
  • There is no obligation to write for this challenge even if you are the person who picked the element that month. This is an important one for me--if you get selected (passed the torch) to be the one to pick the "element" for the next month, do not feel like you have to write something for it unless you want to. I don't want people to begrudgingly write something just because they were the one to choose the topic. Make sense? I want it to be fun.
  • This practice challenge may or may not overlap with the monthly prompt challenge, but it doesn't have to. That will remain a separate challenge. This isn't intended to replace it by any means.

Is there an interest from the forum at large?

You don't have to be a horror writer to participate. Maybe you just have something horrific in your story that needs some feedback as to whether it achieves the level of horror you're going for. And I think we realize that "horror" is kind of a large genre--with subgenres, so don't think you're not writing horror if you're not writing like Stephen King. There is room for everyone who wants to play with horror tropes, I think.

Est. Launch: March 1.

Questions? Comments? Suggestions?

Did I forget anything important?
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Old 02-29-2012, 03:44 AM   #2
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So, are we going to post the elements in this thread, or will they go in individual threads, like for the prompts?

In other words, if this month is a fight scene, for example, does the scene I write go here, or it's own thread? Which we then discuss in that thread, or in this one?

But I'm game for this.

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Old 02-29-2012, 03:49 AM   #3
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There will be a separate thread called: March Elements of Horror
In that thread we'll pick the two elements to practice and people will sign-up or express interest (like we do with the prompts).

Then you'll post your submission in SYW, like the prompts.

Does that answer your question?
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Old 02-29-2012, 03:51 AM   #4
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Yes. But now I have a new one:

Is this thread - which I just took the time to bookmark - just the announcement thread, then?

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Old 02-29-2012, 03:53 AM   #5
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Yes, sorry. You'll have to bookmark more.

It's also like...the rules?

So for new participants, they may want to refer back to it.
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Old 02-29-2012, 04:08 AM   #6
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Ah, all right. Rules are good, I suppose.

:


Though I intend to grumble some about bookmarking it. You understand this, right?



Put me down for the rotation, too, while you're at it.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:41 AM   #7
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Haggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
So, like, do we have to allow sheep to play too or can we just, you know, eat them? With mint jelly. Some fava beans. And a nice Chianti.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:44 AM   #8
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Oops, I kinda already told him he could play. Sorry.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:44 AM   #9
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Put me down for the rotation, too, while you're at it.
I will.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:47 AM   #10
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So, like, do we have to allow sheep to play too or can we just, you know, eat them? With mint jelly. Some fava beans. And a nice Chianti.


Dude!

I'm cutting you off from the rawhide for that.

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Old 02-29-2012, 06:57 AM   #11
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Oops, I kinda already told him he could play. Sorry.
That's it. Give him a sense of safety.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:58 AM   #12
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*adds cilantro to the dog chow*
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Old 02-29-2012, 07:01 AM   #13
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Haggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
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*adds cilantro to the dog chow*


Of course you know this means war.
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Old 02-29-2012, 07:06 AM   #14
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Oh, I know.

But you started it.

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Old 02-29-2012, 07:08 AM   #15
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Haggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
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Oh, I know.

But you started it.

Of course I did. I joined AW before you did.
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:01 AM   #16
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Kids, don't make me stop this thread. Let's at least TRY to show Soapie we're serious and we respect her.

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Old 02-29-2012, 08:07 AM   #17
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Kids, don't make me stop this thread. Let's at least TRY to show Soapie we're serious and we respect her.
Kids?

I mean, I know I'm lots younger than you are, but Haggis? He's ancient.

Even by your crotchety standards.




And Soapy knows I respect her. Really. She does.


I think.
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:15 AM   #18
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Crotchety? Moi? I'll have you know that's curmudgeonly, thank you.

Sheesh, kids these days.

And y'all just hush 'bout Haggis' age now. Y'all are gonna' give him a complex or somethin'.

It's not like he's older'n God, ya' know.
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:47 PM   #19
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So, like, do we have to allow sheep to play too or can we just, you know, eat them? With mint jelly. Some fava beans. And a nice Chianti.
I vote for the second option. I'm thinking a nice boil then a long slow roast. I want fruit punch with my lamb, please.
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:26 PM   #20
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Kids, don't make me stop this thread. Let's at least TRY to show Soapie we're serious and we respect her.

My thread's knight? Thank you, Greg.

Quote:
Originally Posted by slcboston View Post

And Soapy knows I respect her. Really. She does.


I think.
Well everyone likes to hear it said once in a while, yanno.
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:42 PM   #21
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Well everyone likes to hear it said once in a while, yanno.
I think this was a brilliant idea.

That better?

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Old 02-29-2012, 09:54 PM   #22
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soapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
It's a start, yes.
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:28 PM   #23
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Haggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
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Originally Posted by soapdish View Post
My thread's knight? Thank you, Greg.

Well everyone likes to hear it said once in a while, yanno.
Come on, Soapy. You know I adore you. You know I think you're uber brilliant and a great writer of evil stuff. And you're not a sheep which is another good thing.
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:41 PM   #24
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soapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentssoapdish is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
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Originally Posted by Haggis View Post
Come on, Soapy. You know I adore you. You know I think you're uber brilliant and a great writer of evil stuff.
That's better.

Quote:
And you're not a sheep which is another good thing.
Pfft. I can do that part with my hands tied behind my back.
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:49 PM   #25
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Haggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsHaggis is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Oh. And I forgot to say how much I admire your new faucet.
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