Screenwriting : A book about writing horror films by Rafael Pinero

Rafael Pinero

A book about writing horror films

Hello fellow screenwriters, I was just wondering if anyone here knows about any books that specialize in writing horror scripts. I've read Stephen King's ON WRITING, which I loved although it is not like your Save The Cat book that talks about structuring also. I would love to get some recommendations from you guys, thanks in advance and HAPPY NEW YEAR to all of you.

Bill Costantini

Que unda, mi amigo! Writing Horror: A Handbook by the Horror Writers Association (Edited by Mort Castle) is a great read. It features around 40 articles by many great horror writers. I'm sure you'll really love it. Buena suerte, Raf!

Rafael Pinero

Hi Bill, I just read that book, good book by the way, interesting opinions from great writers, although I think it's more for the novelist like ON WRITING from Stephen King.

Rafael Pinero

Jim, did you mean the book Horror writing 101?

Rafael Pinero

By Steve French?

Fiona Faith Ross

I bought The Filmmaker's Book of the Dead: how to make your own heart-racing horror movie" by Danny Draven. I'm not sufficiently qualified to judge the content, but it is packed with info and colour. The pages are beautifully designed as is the whole book. Although my primary interest is screenwriting, the book does seem to cover all aspects of production. You'll find it on Amazon.

Fiona Faith Ross

Fair enough, Jim. I don't write horror, so I shall bow to the experts.

Linda Seger

Hi Rafael , I'm not sure there are books about horror, but there are 2 great books by Neill Hicks about elements that can be part of horror -on thrillers and action adventures. Look up books by Neill Hicks. In my opinion, Genre is not as important as Central Idea Maybe this short video expert from my 'Book Making A Good Script Great' might help explain my comment. Good Luck to you & Happy New Year https://youtu.be/f5yiwSASAqo?list=PLSh8nBH3KClOlm80Tsx0T4I4GiQXLJYYp

Rafael Pinero

Great, thanks... Gotta check these books out.

James Barker

I can't think of any books off the top of my head, but if you're familiar with John Truby, he has a number of genre audio courses that are good. I believe horror is bundled in with Sci-Fi and fantasy, though. There's also a website that has several well thought/written articles discussing horror in writing - the first article link below, but you can follow the links at the end of the page to the rest of the content. I found the three articles from David Taylor especially useful as they discuss what audiences want and don't want: http://www.writing-world.com/sf/taylor1.shtml

Rafael Pinero

Thanks for the link James

Jordan Burbank

I would suggest finding scripts of some of the horror films you enjoy as well and get a feel for their structure and formatting. It can definitely help with shaping the story you want to make.

Phillip "The Scribe Who Cares'" Hardy

Rafael: Good question and groovy idea. Here are some links that came up when I searched "Techniques for writing horror stories." http://nofilmschool.com/2013/10/how-to-make-your-horror-film-screenplay-... http://blog.karenwoodward.org/2013/06/how-to-write-horror-story.html http://www.simplyscripts.com/WR_HH_horror.html http://www.scriptmag.com/features/dont-forget-the-horror-when-writing-ho... http://scriptshadow.net/screenwriting-article-the-keys-to-writing-a-grea... Coincidentally, I just finished my first script for the year yesterday, which is a horror story. Since my antagonist is a crazed killer, I watched "Psycho" and read the original "Halloween" script. I also made sure I had a big opening, two inciting incidents in the first 25 pages, a midpoint finale and an action packed third act. I also let those films and shows that have influenced me provide me with ideas and plot points.

Rafael Pinero

You're right Jordan, that's usually what I do, I just wanted to know if there exists a book like save the cat that specializes just in Horror. I remember I took a course at UCLA that was called writing the Horror script, good class but this was a long time ago back in 2000, so I'm just wondering if a book about is already out that I don't know of.

Rafael Pinero

Hey Phillip, nicely done, I remember I read the Halloween script also when I was writing my Short Film SECLUSION back in 2000, it does help to read other scripts. Thanks for the links.

Rafael Pinero

Jim, I just purchased that book horror 101 that you suggested, I'm eager to read it.

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