Horror Story Ideas: Writing to Scare People
My Very Own Scary Story Ideas for Writers to Develop
I'm allowing people to see some of my horror story ideas in the hopes of motivating myself into developing some of my own story writing. The reasoning behind this is a little embarrassing, but since it bears on me deciding to write this article, here are some broad strokes of this tale:
The creative bug didn't bite me until I was an adult. As I found myself reading good stories, watching good movies, and looking at great art, I discovered that I longed to create such things on my own. I wanted to say that my job was to create. I quickly began to accumulate ideas, and since I loved the horror genre, a lot of them leaned towards the darker side of things. I began forming horror story ideas everywhere and thoroughly enjoyed jotting down plots of frightening tales. This went on for years, and despite accumulating so many ideas, I still don't have any concrete creations yet. Hopefully, this article will help inspire me to start fleshing these plots out and put them out into the universe.
Personal anecdote aside, let's get to the meat on the bones, shall we? Here are 27 scary story ideas for you to hopefully develop or at least be inspired by! Enjoy.
Horror Story Ideas
- As your grandfather lies on his deathbed, he tells you of a terrible crime he committed many years ago and got away with. He also tells you that his freedom was the result of a spell he performed and that you should expect a visit from a dark man. "He will come out of the shadows," are his last words.
- A hiker is trapped in a freak snowstorm but finds shelter in an old cave. As the weeks pass, he grows hungry. Water is not a problem, but he is a meat eater and he begins to look at his lower leg. "There's a lot of good muscle on the lower leg." He draws out his knife and prepares to do what's necessary to survive.
- A small child begins to take a huge interest in horror films. He begins to experiment with small animals, but eventually decides to graduate on to humans. His only decision is to focus on adults or other children. He then begins to sneak out at night on a regular basis . . .
- An old serial killer is suffering from the equivalent of writer's block and has not killed in three years . . . until he reads an article about horror story ideas.
- You are invited to a swanky party full of rich and boring people. To amuse yourself, you ask someone a rather innocent, hypothetical question, "Do you know what it's like to kill a person?" Then, someone says yes.
Short Horror Story Ideas that Focus on Creatures and Monsters
- Larry is a necrophiliac and often visits old cemeteries at night to indulge in his hobby. Imagine his surprise after spending hours digging through rooted ground at hearing sounds coming from inside a casket. Larry smiles . . . and then begins to open it.
- There is an old legend about the land the Preston family just purchased at a rock bottom price. The family that used to live in the city is going to find out that they definitely need to do research before buying real estate in the country for a price that is too good to believe.
- A person visits the same spot in the forest every night for the past five months He (or she) always stays until dawn until he has to get ready to go to work. He had heard a rumor that the forest was inhabited by some sort of monster. Tonight, he'll find out that the rumors are true.
- Ricky has been given the OK to get a pet dog and, despite looking all day, he just couldn't find the one he wanted. They were heading home when they saw someone putting out a "dog for sale" sign at a house. The boy falls in love with the animal and convinces his parents to purchase it despite their reservations. So, what were the parents nervous about? They had never seen a dog that stood so tall, with solid red eyes, even though they were assured by the owner that these were just medical oddities.
- Emily knew the risks of calling forth such ancient creatures for simple favors, but she just had to make Josh love her. Nothing else was more important. She had done everything the book said to do down, down to the last detail, and felt confident her spell would be successful. It's a shame that she didn't realize the typo on the word "tree." Someone had forgotten the letter "h." Now, Emily has to live inside her body alongside a powerful demon—a demon that takes control more often than she wants it to.
Scary Ghost Story Ideas (Featuring Other Things That Go Bump In the Night)
- Rose was quite comfortable with Henry having an imaginary friend. After all, she had one when she was little was fine. Tom was a little worried about him talking to nothing all the time, but she wasn't. She picked up his clothes and headed to his room; the door was closed, as usual. She opened it just in time to see a checker piece move across the board . . . by itself.
- As the spirit sat and watched the girl on the other side of the mirror, he felt such sadness. Despite being dead for only a short time, it felt like an eternity. He watched his wife with loving eyes and watched as she put the gun into her mouth. "It'll be good to see her again," he thought.
- Ouija boards are tricky contraptions. Even the most seasoned demonologist will tell you to treat them with extreme caution. As the salesman was going over the finer points of using the device, all Karen could think about was why someone would bother to create one using human bones. She would later regret not learning why.
- A new author becomes worried when he can't come up with a good idea for his second book. In an act of desperation, he takes out a very old book that his grandfather brought back from the homeland. As he turns the book to an ancient spell, he seriously contemplates contacting H.P. Lovecraft and making a slave out of him.
- Allen has tried to contact the spirit world 12 times, and has failed 12 times. This time, he has taken some advice from a seasoned medium and feels confident he will succeed. Too bad, because he didn't know the medium was suffering from a mental breakdown while giving him that advice. He will definitely get more than he bargained for on this attempt.
Short Scary Story Ideas to Develop at Your Own Leisure
- A man is working the graveyard shift when "Twilight Zone" by Golden Earring comes on the radio. The clock strikes 2 A.M. just as the song lyrics "It's 2 A.M., the fear has gone . . ." plays. The lights go out, yet the radio continues playing. Other things begin to happen as well. The song continues to play this whole time.
- A guy has an opportunity to spend the night with a childhood crush who has been dead for over twenty years. There are drawbacks, of course.
- A 7-year-old child decides to take revenge on his abusive parents after getting no help from his teacher. He also draws inspiration from watching Friday the 13th Part III.
- A painter decides to make his ultimate masterpiece by using his own blood to paint with.
- A woman is overcome with the need to dig a hole in a particular spot on her lawn. After digging 30 feet down, she finds something: a doorknob and a door.
Lastly, Some One-Liner Writing Prompts to Get Those Creative Juices Flowing
- Four strangers are drawn to a small town to enter a bizarre contest.
- A small child will go to any lengths to win this year's science fair.
- A guy becomes worried when he notices the neighborhood cats begin following him.
- All of a sudden you can hear the thoughts of plants, and they are not pleasant.
- Someone leaves an old key with directions on where the lock is. Do you follow?
- A town falls victim to a large plague of killer rats.
- What would you do if you suspected your child of killing someone?