The Art of Darkness

Write a Six-Word Horror Story

April 30th, 2014 by Cobwebs

There’s a (probably apocryphal) story that Ernest Hemingway was challenged to write a six-word novel, and he responded with, “For sale: Baby shoes, never worn.” Over at io9 they’ve been riffing on this extreme flash-fiction idea with a series of posts inviting commenters to write six-word science fiction stories: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

Science fiction and horror are kissing cousins at the very least, so a lot of the contributions skew in that direction. Some are outright creepy:

It was moving under my skin.
— Blalock

“The snow… it… it… got hungry.”
— fogelmatrix

“Try to relax,” my parasite said.
— Claire B.

They ate dreams. Only insomniacs survived.
— x84jdh

Some are really evocative:

The monsters cry in their sleep.
— JennyGirl

The outsiders killed us last night.
— spagornasm

Walls had ears. Eyes, too, now.
— Daryl

The Old Gods come in peace.
— Phos

Death machine works, but it weeps.
— Matt

And some are funny:

Zombies placated! They just wanted hugs.
— nootrac4571

“The badger revolution humbled us all.”
— interrogator-chaplain

Room for rent, cheap. NOT HAUNTED.
— Long Lost Albatross

“Chess?” scoffed Death, “no way. Candyland.”
— ColinGagnon

(Most of them seem to be less “complete story” and more “really intriguing first sentence.”)

Want to play along? Write your spookiest six-word story and leave it in the comments! Here are a few to get you started:

Believe in ghosts? I am one.”

The screaming isn’t real. Ignore it.

Tiny footsteps run into the closet.

“Mommy, why won’t it stop moving?”

Posted in Whatever | 12 Comments »

12 Responses

  1. cookie Says:

    Everything dies and you must watch.

  2. saw Says:

    where did the spider go

  3. Burning Prairie Says:

    She couldn’t put down the ax.

  4. Burning Prairie Says:

    “Mama, I don’t like that smile.” (actually said to me by one of my kids)

  5. Chris Says:

    It slithered quietly into Rachel’s ear.

  6. Akiera Matata Says:

    Red velvet rivulets. Blood, bled, dead.

  7. xJane Says:

    Ooooh, these are all so good! (6-word comment).

    The stars call me: “Come home.”

  8. Kathy White Says:

    A riff on Hemingway:

    For sale: Second hand cemetery plot.

  9. Terry Says:

    The evil baby crawls closer, closer.

  10. Kaitlin Michelle Says:

    People died beneath a silent sky.

  11. Terry Says:

    Mother’s bloody smile said, “Baby’s gone.”

  12. Chris Says:

    I’m obsessed with this. Help me. (unintentional 6 word horror story)

    His coffin was less than comfortable.

    Just like that, it quickly spread.

    She screamed as his head melted.

Leave a Reply