Wow and I thought I went dark, but reading some of these, mine’s downright tame in comparison. I’ve written torture and gore sometimes. More specifically on the latter, a nightmare sequence when the MC makes out with someone, and when he moves to her neck, he rips out her throat with his teeth. And then he eats her still beating heart and her soul. Needless to say she woke up crying. Though I guess the difference might be, I don’t write horror, that scene was in a fantasy-romance xD
There are definitely some disturbing scenes in my ongoing story, haha. However, I haven’t updated on the major ones. The recent one is on the somewhat tamer side, because the character is cooking;
You just made me touch my toe, my goodness. Props for somehow making a stubbed toe feel so numbingly grotesque, haha.
The line between ‘graphic’ and ‘disturbing’ is an interesting one. I feel like it depends so much on how it’s treated within the context. The organ removal is almost clinical. Graphic, but clinical. It’s like the difference between watching body horror versus flipping through medical text books. Both graphic, one is just usually contextually more disturbing.
My most well-known Wattpad book opens with a girl impaled on a fence. It’s not even extraordinarily graphically described, but I think her mother sobbing in the yard is what makes it a more traumatic scene. That and the other senses the MC associates with that event: hearing the blood drip onto the concrete (hallucinated the entire rest of the book, and into the sequel as well) and the smell and sound of the paramedics using a grinder to cut apart the fence.
It all kind of reminds me of advice I got from a sound instructor for making a soundscape for a play: What gives the impression of a big impact isn’t the loudness of the first hit, but the residual sounds of the debris and shrapnel.
You. You preach the truth.
Haha, I’m not too sure that’s a relief or not. xD There was one scene I had that I shared on my Instagram where someone had said it was a bit too disturbing for them (which kind of conjured up the inspiration to make it even more crazy by going into raw detail), and I actually thought this was kind of disturbing if I wasn’t a big reader on gory details (since, personally, I don’t find this disturbing at all haha, I have seen so much worse).
The scene that they had said was disturbing was this one:
Parts of her body were blackened, but everything else about her was indistinguishable. Her face wasn’t even there; it had vanished, creating a massive hole within her skull. Blood covered every inch of her body like it was a canvas for an artist. The holes in her upper body, from her face to the sides of her neck, weren’t only split open, but had also bones and organs spilling out from them as her optic nerves and eyes drooped onto the side of her face. Her brain had been blown to bits as small pieces had stayed as if it were a bowl of noodle soup.
The cervical vertebrae punctured through her skin, and the tip of her chest cavity was ripped open, broken ribs poking out at odd angles. The muscles in her body were shredded, veins dangled outside of her skin that flapped in the slight breeze.
^ Personally, I don’t think this is my worst.
What are your disturbing scenes like? c:
I watch a lot of gory shows, too. xD One of them was Hannibal. My parents were always like, “You worry me,” whenever I saw it.
Hahaha, I know right? Something from like Saw. Though actually, speaking of “human organs to craft clothing” (which that is super cool… and gross haha) my murderer—who just wants to use this excuse as a distraction for my characters—had mentioned that he wanted to use the bodies to make furniture and random objects to sell. xD
Oooh, can I see? c:
That is true! Something can be even worse if you’ve cared about the characters more.
I’d love to see it! c:
Ooh, can I see? c:
Ooh, that sounds cool! I try to balance out between the two—details and leaving it to the reader’s imagination.
Haha, same! c: And thank you! ^-^
Personally, I’m fine with anything. Though I feel like between those three, gory and PTSD would be the ones I’d love to read the most. I feel like it’d be hard to read a sexual harassment scene… Though, I probably have read one of the worst types of scenes in a Stephen King novel, the Outsider. The story featured a young boy who was murdered and raped from a tree branch. That was a hard one to get through. Although, I think it was because I had remembered a scene in the second season of 13 Reasons Why where a guy was raped from the pole of a broom/mop. That scene traumatized me in so many ways…
I’m glad that you’re not glorifying it. c:
Also, that scene would be disturbing to read and sad.
Yup, not disturbing at all.
I think I meant to have everything come out at once—“it” being all the organs. Is there a better way to word it?
Ew. That is nasty. Can you post that scene, so I can read it?
Hahaha I wouldn’t expect that scene to belong in a fantasy romance unless it was a darker version of fantasy romance. Dang, if I were her, that vision would haunt my nightmares. xD
It was on the tamer side, I agree. Though it was still creepy to read with the the guts and how they were getting ready to cook the fish. xD
That is very true! I actually had never given that much thought until now. xD
That does sound very disturbing!
I definitely love this advice! c:
Due to the nature of my book I have had to write many disturbingly morbid scenes. I enjoy it, but i try to write horror in more ways than just shock value via gore.
Without taking another breath, he slowly stepped back unable to comprehend the gore that lay in front of him, when he hit another object. He turned his head to see what it was, when he upchucked all of his acidic, oozing, stomach contents whilst also letting out a gut-wrenching cry. Behind him was the mutilated body of a young lady. Eye’s open wide as if the lids protecting the delicate parts had been sliced off.
Here’s the excerpt:
The foul stench clawed at her throat, burning her nostrils like paper to a flame. It was bitter. Biting. Acrid. The cold meat clung to her fingers, discoloured to a dulled brown.
She crouched over it, back hunched, knees to her chest. Leaning forward, she opened her mouth. A warm breath hit her hand. Teeth bared. Before she could bite, she wretched and turned her head away. Her breaths were shuddering as she collected herself, a rolling, broiling nausea weighing down on her stomach.
“Do it. Just eat it.” Her voice was painfully unconvincing, even to her own ears.
Every fibre of her being was begging her to not go through with her insanity, but she had to. She had no choice.
Squeezing her eyes closed, she swallowed and turned back to the hunk of rotting flesh. This time, she spared no moment for thought as she brought it to her lips. Her teeth broke it’s surface, meeting tough strings of tissue and fat. She tore the chunk off with a decent amount of difficulty, shutting her mouth and holding her fist to her lips to stop herself from spitting it out.
Someone, a long time ago, had told her it was supposed to taste of pork. Oh, they couldn’t have been more wrong. Choking. Gagging. She fought to swallow. Once down, she took another bite. And another. And another.
Eat until the final bite.
You’re definitely not alone. I try to keep violence (and its aftermath) as realistic as possible. Not to gross people out, but to show its cost. To make people see.
I haven’t publish it yet, but I hope this is explicit enough x0
On the way, I peek at the body of the victim. It’s a man, pretty skinny for his size. His black hair is all messy and drenched with blood while his face has been severely damaged by his killer. It was so severe until it becomes unrecognisable. I can even see the cracked white skull sprouting out of the punctured skin. His full formal suited body, on the other hand, is lying stiffly on the grass in an unnatural way. Both of his arms are in the midair, positioned as if he is begging for his life.
His face is smashed, almost as flat as the ground, entirely disfigured until you can’t even know where his eyes, nose or lip are. All of his blood is splattering all over the pavement and grass in mayhem together with pieces of his broken teeth that scattered near to his jaw. His skin has turned pale almost purple from the bleeding and the muscles have stiffened from the rigour mortis.
I know I have. I haven’t posted it to wattpad but when I do, I’ll probably have to switch the Mature rating on. It’s a rape scene (yeah… I consider such among the top disturbing things) that I want to emphasize is not at all sexy, is horrifying to the victim, and an unfortunate reality of the plot I’m writing (war).
Nah. Only… I don’t know… Rape scenes. Suicide scenes. Multiple scenes where a character nearly dies from starvation. Self harm scenes. PTSD scenes. But that’s it. Plus some torture and gory deaths. But I take all this seriously. I don’t glorify any of it.
I don’t think that’s too bad either. But I think what really gets to me personally is when something involves children. I really can’t with that and it makes me really sick. Or cannibalism. Ugh. Don’t know how I ever got through After Humanity by Stpolishook but that is a grusome book.
I think my own scenes are pretty tame too, tbh. Some of my readers find them really bad, but I dunno. I’ve just read a lot worse, you know?
Anyways, here’s some torture that without context looks…Weird.
My father raised the knife in his hand, the blade crooked. I had to clench my jaw hard to not stop him. He very slowly ran the knife up Frej’s shin, making a deep gash in his skin. Frej inhaled sharply and closed his eyes. I stayed by his side, whispering soothing words in his ear. Telling him about the world I’d show him once he got better.
He whimpered when Quetz started removing larger pieces of his skin from his leg. The bone was exposed and Frej inhaled very deeply. He was being such a warrior through this.
Quetz brought the salt over to the table and didn’t hesitate for a minute. He sprinkled it into Frej’s very large wound.
My husband’s eyes flew open and he made a loud outcry, trying to fight his way out of his restraints.
Good God yes. I have one scene in my book where Nikki has a flashback about getting raped and another chapter where she is talking to her therapist about getting groomed. Those were tough to write and tough to read even though I did them months ago.
I mean I wrote my fair share of disturbing scenes, but they’re all rather unconventionally disturbing. Nothing like rape, murder or stereotypical torture.
I wrote two characters have sex on the grave of one of the character’s family.
Most of the prologue for my current story is pretty disturbing stuff. I tend to use those kind of scenes sparingly so as not to desensitize the reader, or make them sick for that matter.
Most of my books have not called for disturbing scenes, and I’m certainly not one for gratuitous violence as well.
However, I have one scene in Midnight Darlings in which Jet received a package. They opened it to discover their cat inside, gutted and disfigured. It was a pretty violent scene.
Oh yeah and the scene towards the end where they beat their stalker to death with a baseball bat after being violently assaulted.
That book as a whole was pretty disturbing.
I wouldn’t call it “disturbing” but I do have a dullahan character who loves playing pranks that involve using their dismembered head.
Oh god yeah. The epilogue for one of my stories details, quite graphically, the return of a character who was thought to have died during an attack on a fairy burrow (we’re talking old, Celtic fae here, not Tinkerbell). Only, it’s not really the character but a dark fae wearing the man’s skin and speaking through his stolen larynx. The scene unfolds with the fae slowly peeling itself out of the “flesh suit” and killing the man’s mother and father while other dark fae swarm the town and raze it to the ground.
It’s one of my favorite scenes xD
A character recounts his experience from the war; the Federation won against the Beastmen, but this character is struggling with his humanity because of what he witnessed and took part in.
“It’s hot down there on Khagilos, you know. You think the summers get bad on Alnora? Down there it’s downright sweltering. Your clothes cling to your body with all the sweat, and you feel like your lungs are gonna get singed from the air. In the high desert, you’ll die within a day without water. That is, if the carrion don’t get to you first.”
This was all stuff Angela had learned in school, but hearing it from a veteran of the war piqued her interest. She stayed quiet, letting him continue on unprompted.
“I’ll never forget… There was this one time, when me and the lads went down to this village in the mountains on the Commander’s orders. They were simple folk, didn’t have power or running water like we Alnorans had. Probably didn’t know there was a war even goin’ on, they just tended to their livestock and minded their own business while hell broke loose all without ‘em.”
“Summers,” Mara said quietly, a soft pleading.
“By our FOB (forward operating base), we saw a little kid, a little lion cub come to check stuff out. He weren’t scared of us, not really, we just saw him peekin’ out over the rocks at us. And my commanding officer, this sergeant prick with a stupid mustache, he gets the cub to come closer, says he has some sweets for him.” Summers chuckled, though his expression was pained.
“Right when the cub gets close, my sergeant pulls out his piece and blam!” Summers’ thumb imitated a hammer firing back. “Blows the little fucker’s head right off. Right in front of me. I couldn’t believe it. ‘He was gonna compromise us,’ the sergeant says. ‘I had to do it, Redaekev, he was gonna get us made.’ I didn’t say nothin’, I felt too sick.”
“That’s enough,” Dr. Ma’kri said. “Quit torturin’ yourself.”
“We killed ‘em all that night. Every last one. We dumped em all in a hole, and set fire to it, then we went on to the next place to do the same thing.” Summers rubbed at his eye with the palm of his hand, as fresh tears sprung forth. “Even the kids. The kids didn’t do nuthin’, but we killed ‘em all the same.”