Tag Archives: story

How to write a NoSleep Hit

Now, let’s get down to business. I guess I need this; to clear my conscience and clear my mind.

I lied to you.

I’m sorry. I think.

But this is the cure. The revelation. The big attempt to clean my samskaras as the Hindus would say. Clear your samskaras, your ballast, and you can free yourself from the eternal and painful cycle; the suffering; the punishment of rebirth.

This is how you write a NoSleep story. Or any horror story.

The first step is to have an idea. A concept, let’s say a man that appears behind your reflection.

You have to feel yourself into the moment. You have to stand in front of the mirror, with all your intention and all of your heart, and you have to stare at that empty space behind your reflection and you have to see him, there, with a straight nose and a perfectly symmetrical face and this smooth haircut, the hair, perfect, completely without hair loss, the way only actors in Hollywood can have it, combed to the side.

And you imagine him, standing there. Imagine what he looks like. How close does he stand? Does he keep his distance at the beginning, but then, over time, he steps closer?

A good horror story takes time. You cannot just churn it out in a few minutes. You have to feel it over days; you have to make the fear real – grow it, feed it, let it nourish and consume you at the same time. Continue reading

Narration of “Know Thy Neighbour”

Nearly two years ago I posted my short story “Know Thy Neighbour” on Reddit’s NoSleep community. Strange things happen on the internet, because somehow, about a year later, Craig of Chilling Tales for Dark Nights discovered the story and managed to win amazing voice actress Lynne Darlington to narrate the main voice and Jeff Clement to speak the male voice and do sound design and post-production. The result is a chilling and wonderful narration and now I want to congratulate particularly Lynne, and also Craig and Jeff, as their narration and with it an excerpt of my story will be featured in the next edition of one of the reference works of voice acting.

If you haven’t yet – listen in, to “Know Thy Neighbour”:

Orion

And I smile, because if the most correct thing in the world looks wrong the only thing you can do is to smile.

Bessie runs further, straight ahead into the fields, as if she is hunting something.

I shout her name, but, really, I don’t care.

Bessie is somewhere in the wet mud, but I can only look up, at the wrong Orion.

Orion has seven stars. Three in a line diagonally from the horizon and a very vivid square of four stars is arranged around those three, locking those three into an imaginary square.

But Bessie runs somewhere in the mud and all I can look at is the wrong Orion, the Orion with four stars in the center. And the fourth star, every time I raise my head against the cold, looks wrong. Continue reading

Almond and Rose

The scent woke me up. Gentle, warm, soft, arousing. Almond. Almond and something else, a fruit or a flower.

A glimmer of light came from under the door.

I was nervous, then confused. Somebody was in my apartment, but why that smell? Why such an erotic scent?

Quietly I pulled the jeans over my stiff legs. The scent was slowly fading away. I picked the broom from behind my wardrobe and tiptoed to the door. The door handle moved without a noise. The door opened, I stepped outside. The corridor was dark, only a glimmer of light came from the kitchen.

I slowly moved there and froze.

A woman. A thick but translucent white. Her eyes on the empty space in front of me. Screaming without a sound. A black hole opened in her stomach. Her face slowly deformed. She fell. The moment her body touched the ground she was gone. Continue reading

Jesus of Narnia

This story is also available in Polish.


Since the breakup Melanie lived in two worlds. In the weeks with me she lived in zoos and museums and books, in the weeks with her mother she lived in bible classes and religious movies and churches.

It was confusing for her, the constant switch from reading books to believing books and back. Maybe that’s why we failed to protect her.

It was in the summer. Melanie had just turned 10. Her first summer week was spent in a bible camp. When her mother finally dropped her at my place she also brought a big bag of books.

I still remember how Hailey cocked her head.

“You always want her to read. Now she has good books. What more do you want?” Continue reading