“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 author and editor Lee Allen Howard. Lee, who edited a great anthology of horror stories all based on the ten commandments for Dark Cloud Press (in a book called Thou Shalt Not…) has a background in religious studies and you can tell from his stories that he enjoys exploring the dark side of belief systems without ever flinching or holding back. So it’s no surprise that his prompts draw inspiration from the Bible (specifically, the New International Version) in an unxpected way. He writes: “When I need dark promptings, I turn to an ancient book. What do these passages inspire you to write about?”…
Just Because You’re Paranoid Doesn’t Mean They’re Not Out to Get You…
Because of all my enemies, I am the utter contempt of my neighbors
and an object of dread to my closest friends—those who see me on
the street flee from me. I am forgotten as though I were dead; I
have become like broken pottery. For I hear many whispering,
“Terror on every side!” They conspire against me and plot to take
my life. (Ps 31:11-13)
I’m Hungry and I’m Not Sharing!
The most gentle and sensitive woman among you—so sensitive and
gentle that she would not venture to touch the ground with the sole
of her foot—will begrudge the husband she loves and her own son or
daughter the afterbirth from her womb and the children she bears.
For in her dire need she intends to eat them secretly because of the
suffering your enemy will inflict on you during the siege of your cities.
Lefty Infiltrates and Assassinates an Enemy Fat Cat
Ehud then approached him while he was sitting alone in the upper
room of his palace and said, “I have a message from God for you.”
As the king rose from his seat, Ehud reached with his left hand, drew
the sword from his right thigh and plunged it into the king’s belly.
Even the handle sank in after the blade, and his bowels discharged.
Ehud did not pull the sword out, and the fat closed in over it.
Then Ehud went out to the porch; he shut the doors of the upper
room behind him and locked them. (Judges 3:20-23)
What If They Were Let Out on Parole?
And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but
abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness,
bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day.
Beastly Sores: Don’t Scratch Them, They’ll Get Infected!
The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly,
festering sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the
beast and worshiped its image. (Rev. 16:2)
Lee Allen Howard has been a professional writer since 1985. He writes horror, erotic horror, dark fantasy, and supernatural crime. His publication credits include Cemetery Sonata anthology, Thou Shalt Not... anthology (Dark Cloud Press), The Sixth Seed, Severed Relations, and Stray (available on Amazon). He is currently working on his fourth novel. Lee blogs about writing and editing on his writer’s site: http://leeallenhoward.com.
Lee’s contribution to Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction is called “Your Very First Editor” and is chock full of great self-editing advice.
Read more “Dark Promptings”…