How To Get Your Horror Story Noticed

question
discussion

#1

It’s come as a surprise for me that the Horror genre on Wattpad isn’t really that popular. Yeah, there’s some horror stories that have a million reads, but it’s only a handful.
What are some tips that could get my horror books noticed? Especially since one of them falls under Vampire- another small genre.


#2

Musician Leah McHenry (better known as her stage name, LEAH), once said (and I’m paraphrasing) that one of the best things an artist can do is to define what niche genres their work falls under. While she was talking about music, I think this can apply to fiction writing as well.

If you focus on a broad genre (like horror), you’ll be the small fish in the big pond. If you focus on a sub-genre (haunted house story) or niche genre (a haunted house/martial arts story or a haunted house/romance story), you’ll stand out more and be the big fish in the small pond. Figure out what sub-genres and niche genres your story falls into, and use those genres in your story’s tags/labels when you upload them to Wattpad.


#3

Also, look up the most popular horror stories on Wattpad. See what tags the authors used, and ask yourself if any of those same tags could also apply to your story.

Maybe do the same thing with the most popluar NON-horror stories on Wattpad.


#4

I actually did look up the popular horror stories on Wattpad and used the same tags. :sweat_smile:


#5

Another thing is to search for groups that write horror and interact with them. A lot of horror writers don;t use the threads, which is one of the main reasons it’s hard to get any traction. If you have any writer friends, you could always ask for a second opinion about where your book is going. That’s a great way for others to support each other in their writing endeavors.

Another thing too is entering competitions. If you get anywhere with them and interact with the users in the comps, that can help too. Trust me on that one, I’ve been doing that for a year and a half and still find it a little hard getting my horrors read :wink:


#6

Yeah, I noticed that the horror club is dead haha. But that explains why now.

That’s a good idea by the way! The only competition I’ve entered are The Wattys.


#7

Look for the user based ones. There’s heaps of them with loads of supportive writers :slight_smile:

If you like (and for anyone reading this) if you’d like to be on my tag list, feel free to let me know. I enter competitions frequently and keep an eye out on interesting things :slight_smile:


#8

Yeah, I’d appreciate that! :slight_smile:


#9

I was just about to put a thread out asking the same thing, just uploaded chapter 3 and only had 22 reads, done the tag thing, put it on the weekly horror add, shared it on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. This is not easy, but still going to push forward and take a few hints from here. Cheers


#10

Tips:

Good thumb nail.

Awesome hook in the first paragraph. Nice build-up in the first chapter, end the chapter with a strong hook. Follow chapter 2 with a good build up and end it with a mindful hook. Keep pulling the reader into your story.

Don’t focus on franchising! Too many writers try to make a franchising monster character. Readers can see this and they will hate it.

Don’t pull punches. You’re writing horror. Morals are thrown out the window. We don’t need a serial killer that kills everybody that crosses his/her path and suddenly won’t harm a child or a dog, especially if there is nothing to hold the killer back.

Keep it dark. Writing horror and watching horror are two different things. Dark horror translates best in a book, not in a movie. Roald Dahl was upset with the movie Witches (1990) because the director didn’t use his dark ending. Sadly, Roald was wrong, the dark ending would make the movie suck. But the dark ending make the book good. Why? Writing lacks visuals (sight) so a writers only power is to keep the readers mentally compelled to the story. Just remember it’s hard to make jump scares while reading a book, that’s why darker the horror story the better.

Most importantly. Make sure your book is finished before posting updates on Watpad. If you keep updating the book a chapter per week, readers will noticed.


#11

Wow, there’s a lot to unpack here with this post. I think a lot of what you said is really helpful!
As for the third point, umm… I think I already messed up there. :sweat_smile:
Oh, for sure in horror you can’t hold back. In my opinion, there is practically no line that can’t be crossed.
Hmm, your last point is something I kinda do and kinda don’t agree with. I think you should post regular updates, but it doesn’t have to be complete yet.


#12

Sure you could post unfinished work, but when you run into a point when you have to finish the story you’ll find yourself overwhelmed. HIM, Dragon’s Nest and a handful of shorts were completed before I entered wattpad and my reads, reviews and fans were awesome. Stories that I tried to write while posting updates on wattpad were a challenge. The Notebook was a weekly nightmare. Kiss My Silver Bullet took longer then it should. And I have a mess of stories that I just never got around to complete. So I’m giving advise based on my lesson learned. Today, I will not post any incomplete story on wattpad.

Typically, it should take you 3 to 4 months in writing a book. It could be faster or slower. And that’s first draft. I will suggest in posting the complete first draft and update as you post, This should not overwhelm you.


#13

It takes me like a year or two to finish a book hahaha. But that’s because I don’t have a completed book or finish it before posting.
I just update when I can, which probably isn’t the best thing. So yeah, I see your point.


#14

I will admit that instant reviews and replies are awesome, especially when you receive comments that enjoy your work. The problem that I noticed was how difficult it was to get your mind back into writing after knowing what people like and disliked. Too much of a distraction.