“Dark Promptings” is a special series of guest-written creative writing prompts, aimed at sparking the imagination’s gasoline for writers from any genre…but with a dark or devious discoloration, just like the Instigation department at Gorelets.com. The guest contributors are folks who wrote articles appearing in my fat new non-fiction book for fiction writers of all kinds, Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction, making a stop here at gorelets.com as part of their Virtual Book Tour across the web. (You can find my own VBT essays elsewhere).
Our next “Dark Promptings” come from Michael Bracken, author of the new book, Memories Dying. He is a vastly prolific author of short stories, with around 900 currently in print, and he has written in nearly every genre. With so much creativity to spare, one might wonder where he draws his ideas from. One answer might be from family. Below he offers the following “story starters” — opening lines for creating your own familial terrors — by posing the question, “IF YOU CAN’T WRITE ABOUT YOUR FAMILY? WHO CAN YOU WRITE ABOUT?”…
My mother always said my father was the devil, but I was thirteen before I realized she wasn’t exaggerating.
Never borrow money from a relative, especially when he asks for your soul as collateral.
I was six when I watched my brother kill the neighbor’s cat. I was sixteen when I watched him kill the neighbor.
We all die someday, grandma. Today is your day.
The police will ask why I drowned my children. Self-defense, I’ll tell them, but they’ll never believe the answer.
We’ve all been with my sister, and she’s getting pretty near wore out. When I saw that pretty co-ed hiking the trail alone, I knew it was time to bring some new blood into the family.
Even though he is the author of several books, Michael Bracken is better known as the author of almost 900 short stories, including horror stories published in Hot Blood: Strange Bedfellows, Midnight, New Texas, Northern Horror, Specters in Coal Dust, Weirdbook, and many other anthologies and magazines. Several of his horror stories have been collected in Canvas Bleeding (Wildside Press). Memories Dying, originally released in the U.K., is now available for Kindle in the U.S. Learn more at
www.CrimeFictionWriter.com and CrimeFictionWriter.blogspot.com.
Michael’s essay in Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction is called “I Write Short Stories”.
Read more “Dark Promptings”…