Gothic fiction and ghost stories continue to rise in popularity as the years pass. In 2023 alone, dozens of atmospheric releases have been released, and even more are slated for 2024 with undeniable gothic horror.
Keep reading to discover golden tips and tricks to make your gothic fiction strike the hearts of your readers. If you’re writing the story as a thesis, hire custom thesis writers for assistance. However, if you’re doing the work yourself, here are some tips to make it as real as ever.
- Go Personal
When writing ghost stories and gothic fiction, identify and center on the things that make you afraid, uneasy, and anxious. To avoid being generic in your story, writing on a common gothic horror theme, you must be willing to go personal. Use what makes you afraid and uneasy to communicate with your readers, and you’ll succeed in frightening them!
- Choose a Location Removed from Reality
Set a scene for the story and make it somewhere capable of being its own bizarre, scary world. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a spooky castle or collapsed haunted house; it just needs to be removed from reality. A good example is an island – it’s no coincidence that many gothic and ghost tales are set on islands.
There’s nothing more frightening than misty mansions with shadows around every corner, but the horror is not in the house alone. The horror is the understanding that you’re trapped in an oppressive, claustrophobic atmosphere – or something of the sort. It has to be where you are prevented from physically leaving by weather conditions or mysterious monsters. Whatever you choose, understand that location matters greatly in gothic stories; it can be compelling, repressive, or perversely comforting.
- Leave the Antagonist Unknown
Most gothic horror stories feature an unreliable narrator whose audience cannot fully trust for obvious reasons. If the narrator’s or protagonist’s vision is warped, there will always be something unclear and, ergo, dangerous. This fear of the unknown and sense of unease and dread keeps readers engaged, frightened but curious.
- Make the Atmosphere Uneasy
Ghost and gothic writing is mostly about atmosphere, including the air quality, mood, and tense awareness that you’re in a place where anything can happen. One way to insert this uneasiness in your writing is to include details that make your readers sense the danger. Keep readers on the edge of their seats by being one step ahead of your protagonist, fearing what’s coming next.
- Build Suspense, Not Just Unease
Go beyond creating unease and building suspense, making the monster or ghost more frightening the closer the story gets to its climax. The goal is to withhold information from your readers and let them keep asking questions. Dangle your audience on the hook while maintaining the unease you’ve already created in them. However, it takes some skill to know how much information to hold back and how much to provide.
ConclusionThese are a few valuable tips that can improve the quality of your gothic or ghost story. If you need a good gothic story for your dissertation, many dissertation writing services are available to help you out.