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Horror Story Prompts That Won’t Let Readers Sleep

Every story begins with an idea. For writing horror stories, scriptwriters are even more careful because it requires much of their effort to scare the pants off their readers or the audience.

Unlike simple stories that begin with a typical beginning, middle and end, horror stories are made to fully grab your reader’s attention and evoke one of our most primal emotions — fear. To make your readers feel scared and terrified is the goal that needs to be achieved when working on a horror script.

However, it would never be possible to keep your readers up all night until the story you write has a strong ability to clench your reader’s mind and looking over their shoulders.

So, to get started with your horror story, the following ideas are 40 scary horror writing prompts that will not let you and your reader’s sleep.

  • A man looks in the mirror but doesn’t see himself. He sees someone different each time. Upon further research he discovers they are all people who are dead that shared something in common with him.
  • Your shadow starts moving when you are standing still.
  • Sunrises from the west.
  • Two days pass without the sun rising.
  • Earthquake stays for a whole day long without stopping for a moment.
  • You visit a burial ground and see a body’s feet outside the grave.
  • A man wakes up without his feet.
  • You realize that your fingers are falling.
  • A black cat gives you an evil smile and jumps to your face.
  • A man is being watched by evil all the time.
  • You are watching a film, and suddenly something scary appears on your TV screen, screaming with blood on its entire face. As you look closer you notice it’s your wife, husband, boyfriend or girlfriend.
  • A boy died in a car accident, but his mother sees the boy still reading books in his room every day. There’s also no record of his death and no one seems to remember the funeral.
  • You are reading a story that turns out to be about your entire life except the names of everyone you know are changed. The story ends with a brutal murder. Is this your fate or just coincidence?
  • You go into the shower, and blood starts flowing instead of water. For the rest of the day everyone seems to be covered in blood but they are unaware.
  • You hear a vampire sound every evening from your window.
  • A girl is asleep alone in her house, and the TV turns on. When she turns it off it turns back on with an extreme closeup of a demon screaming her name.
  • You order food at night, and the delivery boy turns out to be a serial killer.
  • Your talk in the mirror, and it replies in a demonic voice.
  • A new-born baby starts talking in an old lost language. When you finally get it translated you realize the child is warning you of an apocalyptic event about to happen.
  • It’s midnight, you are alone at home, and someone starts cooking in your kitchen. Every-time you go and check — there’s no one there. When you look at the food that has been cooked you realize it’s human body parts. Suddenly, there’s a knock at the door — it’s the police.
  • A doll sitting on the sofa starts moving on its own.
  • You’ve been having dreams about an alien for weeks and one day you witness an alien abduction, but no one will believe you — until more folks in your small town begin disappearing at a rapid rate.
  • You are alone at home and sleep with curtains folded. As soon as you wake up, they are open. You close them and as soon as you turn your back all the windows in the entire house explode at the same time with no visible cause or reason.
  • In the morning, you open the door, and someone appears in front of you who died years before.
  • A small girl tells you the name of every person you’ve hurt in the past.
  • You receive a video-call from a friend who’s sitting next to you. But the same friend on video is sitting somewhere else.
  • You wake up with a dead body beside you.
  • One day you wake up in a coffin and when you pass out you wake up in a cage next to a bloody knife and a note that says “Give me your soul or kill yourself”.
  • A girl scared of rats is stuck in a room full of them.
  • A boy scared of lizards finds a small one trying to crawl out of his mouth while sleeping.
  • You find a dead body buried in your garden. Before calling the police you notice the dead body has a police badge on its chest.
  • A person buried in a grave turns out to be alive after few weeks.
  • You see a dead body with the same face as you.
  • Someone gets a picture of his accident which he doesn’t remember.
  • A woman wakes up to a snake on her pillow. After it bites her she notices she slowly begins taking on its traits.
  • You wake up with no eyes.
  • A man wakes up with his nose above his eyes.
  • A girl wakes up in a middle of a dark sea at night.
  • A killer is running after you, but you are paralyzed.
  • You see a clown smiling at you in the middle of the night every time you wake up. One day you get fed up and try to attack it but each time you strike it you are the one who gets bruised and bloody.
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Jay Carver

Jay Carver is a screenwriter, director and producer. Through his production company J-Style Films, he has done work for companies such as Turner Broadcasting. In the past, he has worked with Hollywood actor Omari Hardwick and won several film festivals including "Best Director".

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