Sunday, April 3, 2011

What Every Horror Writer Should Always Have On Hand!

This thought came to me late last night after my husband and I were running through some promotional photo ideas for my book. The first thing I want to remind you is that #1 was my husband's idea, which after a moment of thought, I agreed with him. Personally, I think these are must-haves, because they really do capture the imagination and help us as writers.

1. An a**hole for a spouse or partner (in the case of a woman  - use your imagination) - This is perfect for when you need murder scene ideas and your spouse has managed to piss you off once again (use your imagination). Or just aggravate your significant other, so you can delve into your creative process. You need to be able to improvise and come up with ideas for not getting caught or just for creating the scene.

REMINDER - By all means, I'm not a violent advocate in the least bit, and I'm sure others would question that considering I write horror. I also am not promoting intentionally harming another person or animal. THIS IS STRICTLY FOR YOUR WRITER'S IMAGINATION FOR YOUR STORIES! So, please keep this is mind. (After 23 years of a successful marriage, my husband and I still have a sense of humor over this stuff.)

2. Laptop - This is pretty self-explanatory.
3. Pen & Paper - Self explanatory
4. Evil Cat - What better than an evil cat to fuel up your imagination. I do have one of those. Ok, maybe she's not evil,  but she sure does look it sometimes.
5. Camera - These are good to have on hand, whether you're writing or taking a day out on the town. If something catches your eye, take a picture of it. Whether you use it for writing or not, it's nice to reminisce over it.
6. Fake Blood - Hmm, okay, I know what you're thinking now. Why the hell should I have that on hand? Here you go, fake blood is great for those promotional pics you're going to take with your camera, whether you're going for the gore factor or playing with that murder scene you just wrote. It's nice to have a body nearby...oh excuse me, your spouse, partner, sister, brother, whomever. We don't want to give anybody the wrong impression here. THIS IS STRICTLY FOR THEATRICS, PROMOTION AND RESEARCH!
7. Caffeine - I prefer coca-cola or coffee myself. These are for those late nights you're working hard and by God, you're not going to bed until you get those thoughts written down. Lord knows, we don't want to forget our ideas!
8. Music - Look for inspirational music for whatever you are writing. Open your mind - and listen to that type of music or artist you FORBID yourself to listen to. You might find something that will inspire you. Believe it or not, I'm listening to music I never thought I would have in my entire life. I was looking for music to help my mindset when writing my first book when my daughter, Cassandra, told me, "Mom, you need to listen to Marilyn Manson. Even those that don't like him like at least one of his songs." So, I listened, and then I found myself researching him and his music. Now, I'm hooked!
9. Research books, dictionary, & thesaurus - If you're writing on a subject that needs plenty of research, I recommend having your research books on hand. And, yes, have your dictionary and thesaurus available too, even if you're writing on your laptop. They do come in handy, sometimes.
10. Phone - Keep it near you, but keep it on vibrate. Lord knows, you don't need any interruptions, but if there is an emergency, you have it available. This is also good to have when your done writing. It's always good to call that special someone (family, friend, whoever) after you're done writing to bring you back to earth. Do you ever get so involved in your writing that your mindset is focused strictly on the feelings and emotions in your book? It's good to call someone to bring your mind back to reality!

And, that's it for today. I hope you enjoyed my list of must-haves. Please remember to get back in focus with reality when you're done writing. Even if you can't talk to anybody, sit on the back porch and enjoy the sunlight. I know I've locked myself up in the bedroom too many times for my writing pleasure. Soak up the sun, jump in the pool, run in the sprinklers, just do something. Have a wonderful day!


  1. My first thought upon reading this was that you aren't old enough to have been married for 23 years!!! Haha. Great list, great post! Thanks!

  2. Lynn,

    I love the spouse murder scene inspiration.

    That's hysterical. Laptop is a must, but pen and paper not so much because I can't read my own handwriting (fairly certain I've lost great ideas to this problem). Evil cat, well, there's three roaming around here, and they ARE evil. But the fluffy kind.

    I agree with the camera thing, but when I'm traveling. If there's a particular scene that strikes home, snap! Easier to revisit later. I don't write horror, exactly, so I'll trade in fake blood for jokingly acting out scenes with my sister. Caffeine is a must to life in general. Coffee!

    Music is amazing inspiration, but not while writing. Too distracting, in my opinion. I'm glad to hear you're giving other types of music a chance. It's okay to pick and choose; you don't have to like everything by an artist! View my Facebook profile for list of bands to check out when you're needing something new for your daydreams. :)

    I prefer but that's just me. Internet research, however, does need to be checked against other sources for verfication. The only reason I keep my phone handy when writing is because I get Twitter notifications on it, so I check those when I need to look up from the screen. It remains on silent though.

    The list is missing just one thing: chocolate! :D

    Take care,


  3. Thank you for the compliment, Stacy! Without completely divulging my age, I'll tell you that I'm in my early 40's. And, believe it or not, I'm a grandmother, too!

    Yes, we're all going to have our differences on that must-have list. My choice of pen and paper is for those late nights I lay in bed and BAM, you get hit with something you have to write down. I don't know how many times I've woken my husband up, jumping out of bed at midnight or one in the morning. I'll be damned if I'm not write it down. I've come up with so good many great ideas for my book in the midnight hour! And, also in this section, forgot to mention that you can swap out pen and paper for a tape recorder. I think I was the spouse that was the inspiration for the murder scenes on those occasions. LOL

    Thanks for the comments on here and I look forward to checking out your list on the music, Rainy. I've always listened to a little bit of everything. I try to keep an open mind.

    And, how the heck did I forget the chocolate?!