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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Horror  ›  Horror Stories
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Don
Posted: September 8th, 2018, 11:06am Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Horror Stories by Curtis Threadgold - Short, Horror, Anthology - Three short horror tales set in the North of England. Anthology. Pilot. 33 pages. - pdf format

Writer interested in feedback on this work



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Zombie Sean
Posted: September 8th, 2018, 12:35pm Report to Moderator
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Hi Curtis,

ONE - UNDERGROUND

Page 1 -


Quoted Text
A  small  piece  of  plastic  piping  juts  from  the  floor.


...juts up from the *ground*?

Page 7 -


Quoted Text
He  looks  paler,  tireder.


Is tireder a word? More tired? It sounds odd...but then again, Chrome isn't red-underlining it.

Page 9 -


Quoted Text
Craig choakes  and  complains  but  his  protests  are  muffled  by  the fluff.


chokes*

So that was a good start off to an anthology. Claustrophobic, I like it. I like the balance between Sophie keeping animals as pets in jars and keeping Craig as a pet in his own grave. The ending was definitely a punch in the gut where you finally think she's going to try and save him, but lo and behold, she gets that pup. I felt that her burying the hole was a bit out of character for her, considering she's so carefree why would she cover the hole? She didn't try to hide her other dead pets so why try and hide Craig? And just curious as to why the dog whimpers at the end. Not that it's a bad thing, it leaves up to the audience's imagination, like, what did she do to the dog? Especially with her mom present. Maybe end with her playing with the dog in her room, her mother smiling at her, then she closes the door and we FADE TO BLACK, and THEN hear the dog whimper?

---

TWO - FEAST

Page 14 -

Interesting her car keys are in a cupboard with a bunch of other keys. Is that custom in other countries? Being an American, I usually know most other people leaving their keys on the counter or on a key rack next to a/the door. Or in their purse. Or something. Just a detail I noticed. Maybe Vera is very peculiar with her keys. I'll take that.

Page 15 -


Quoted Text
She  searches  the  floor  around  her  feet.

All  the  while  keeping  her  eyes  on  the  van  and  the  dense trees  around  her.


How is she searching the floor whilst keeping her eyes on the van? I assume that she's looking at the van while using her hands to search the floor (also, why?). If so, you should be a bit clearer about this.


Quoted Text
And  very  slowly  moves  the  car  forwards.


forward*

You're utilizing a lot of white space with this page, and some of the pages before. Not yet sure about future pages. Even though you create quite a bit of suspense writing one single sentence on each line, it eats up a lot of space. This story can be cut down a page or two (from what I've read so far) by clumping up your sentences a little bit more. Honestly, I don't mind how you've structured your action lines because I do this too to create suspense. But others may not like it, and state that it increases your page count/looks strange/or something. Maybe.

Page 16 -


Quoted Text
She  glances  back  at  the  unconscious  Kerry.

Then  slowly  moves  onward.  Towards  the  trainer.

Her  breathing  quickens.  She  is  in  no  shape  to  defend herself.


1) why wouldn't she save Kerry, her daughter who was just kidnapped!? 2) you state very specifically that she is in no shape to defend herself, so why is she even approaching this trainer in the first place!?

Page 18 -


Quoted Text
The  key  is  not  in  the  pocket  Vera  checks.


Just a nit pick, but this sentence read awkwardly to me at first. Maybe, "Vera checks her right/left pocket, but her keys are not there."


Quoted Text
The  man  nearly  brakes  down.


breaks*

Page 21 -

You mention VERA'S DINING ROOM twice in the sluglines at the bottom.

Page 22 -

TOM'S line: "And I said *TO* her..."

Page 23 -

Why would Vera wear a long elegant dress over pants? I figured she was wearing just a dress (obviously undergarments beneath) based on your description.

So I figured from the title and the first shot that it was going to have to do with something regarding people eating human flesh in some way or another. This was as enjoyable as the first, besides the stuff I pointed out above. The "twist" was nice. I like how you jump straight to the point without really fluffing up very much character development, which can be both positive and negative. However, we do find out more about Vera throughout the story, so all is good, in my opinion. I like how you treated the dinner as more of a "test" for Vera, though it makes me more curious as to who these people are. Are they cannibals? Monsters? Who or what are they? I suppose that is left to the mystery of the story, but at the same time, I wanna know! Additionally, how did the van crash into the wall in the first place? Why did it crash? It doesn't seem like there was anything to cause the accident. We could even see who the driver is at the very beginning, and introduce THE MAN. We don't know who he is until Kerry calls him Daddy. So we could see The Man driving the van, and maybe narrowly avoid hitting a cow or some other livestock or wild animal and swerve off the road, hitting the rock wall? Otherwise, it just seems like he deliberately ran into it.

THREE - THE TRADE

Page 25 -


Quoted Text
As  if  from  a  distance,  the  sound  of  children's  laughter  can
be  heard,  along  with  a  single  repeated  word.

'Mum'

'Mum'

'Mum'

Over  and  over  again.

The  voice  gets  louder.

AIMEE
Mum!


Not sure if this is structured properly, as any dialogue that should be said should be formatted as AIMEE'S "first" line. Instead of writing it in the description/action, write it as actual dialogue.

Page 28 -

Maybe have Jess ask what the moss is? She seems to roll her eyes at the idea a little too quickly too. Maybe have her roll her eyes after Collin and Imogen explain a little bit more as to what it is and what it does?

Oh jeez...was not expecting that ending at all. Good twist for that too. I guess I just wonder why her fetus and not Aimee, but then again, I don't think it really matters. The universe chose which daughter to have her switch bodies with. Unless Aimee is an adopted daughter, but I don't see that being likely as it was never hinted at that, I don't think.

These were all very entertaining, but could each use a little bit of work, either with spelling/grammar, or slight changes to help make the stories a bit clearer. But overall I enjoyed each and every one of them. Definitely Creepshow or Tales from the Crypt material. Horror anthologies always remind me of those programs.

Sean


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Dustin
Posted: September 8th, 2018, 2:11pm Report to Moderator
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Action speaks louder than dialogue.

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Tireder isn't a word. You would have to write 'more tired'. Exhausted is another option... I'd go for something like that.
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CurtisThreadgold
Posted: September 10th, 2018, 3:29am Report to Moderator
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Thanks so much for that Sean. Thatís some really useful, kind feedback and I will take it all on board. Much appreciated.
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