Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Horror Blogging 101 (or what the hell do I write about?)

I've noticed a lot of new bloggers starting their own horror blogs recently. That's good to see. People who are passionate about the horror genre and want to chime in on their thoughts makes this little horror blogosphere better. Joining this horror blogosphere is supe duper awesome. All the people I've talked to, tweeted, e-mailed and left comments for are some of the uber coolest people from across the country and the world. All have a unique style to their writing, some are cleverly Tricks are for Kids hilarious and others come up with theme posts and running gags that never get old.

But starting up a blog is a huge undertaking (ok maybe not, it's pretty much like tweeting but longer).

Anybody can write a blog. Right now, as you're reading this, some 14 year old tween girl wearing black nail polish and listening to Sonic Youth is writing on her Twilight blog and is anxiously waiting for that first comment. (it usually is "FIRST!") In another part of the country, a 38 year old film school dropout just watched Saw VI and wants to share his thoughts so he's registered DiscountJigsawsTraps.blogspot.com.

I don't know the exact figure but shit, I'd say 5,000 people a day start up a blog. Some write 3 posts and forget about it, some write 25 posts a day. But to be effective as a horror blogger, you have to go with a few foolproof generic posts that will get people engaged. I'm here to show you the ropes, give you some tips and tricks of the trade and for only two easy payments of $19.99 make you the next jaded viewer.

(Some of you may be saying...Jeff, why are you qualified to teach ME about horror blogging? Your site SUCKS BALLS and is filled with lists, pictures of horror queens I've never heard of and your reviews are like Bible long. And your taste in horror movies is equivalent to a poor man's Dread Central. Well if you put it that way......you're right. You guys are mean. Fuck, I'm going to watch Avatar again. Oh screw that Mr. or Ms. Horror Bourgeoisie! Yeah my qualifications can be called in to question, but I promise you like a Billy Mays infomercial, you'll find it funny, slightly interesting, very arousing and you'll use what I have to say)

Still interested? OK let's list a few tricks to get you started.

Lesson 1: Picking a name for your blog

Well this is it. The single most important thing you can do is pick a fuckin awesome name for your blog. Remember this is the name that you're going to promote the shit out of. It has to be clever, easy to remember and really works if its 4 words or less (though this can be ignored if your name is really clever like Chuck Norris Ate My Baby). The easiest route is to put "horror" in some form in the name. My suggestion, use a variation of a title of a horror movie or play Scrabble.

For inspiration, check out the blogs to the right.


(Oh yeah, you gotta pick a place to create your blog. I'd suggest Blogger as its already got a built in horror community so you can Follow peeps and easily comment. Wordpress is fine. Their layouts look way nicer than Blahger. Only drawback on Wordpress is you're gonna have to PR the crap out of it)


Lesson 2: A post title that LOLs or that can easily offend most of America

OK, now that you got your name, you need to actually write shit. Everybody on the Internet has ADD and usually skims through post titles so you need to either tweet a good subject line or fill it with high levels of vulgarity.

Examples are:

My favorite Ice Cream flavor: Zombie Brains!


Trick R Treat fuckin sucked monkey nards (if you liked this movie you have the IQ of a Triceratops)

Lesson 3: Reviews of mainstream horror movies where you make fun of the audience

OK, its guaranteed that the most reader response will come from horror movies that everybody has seen. It's definitely OK to write a review of Zombieland. People love that movie. It's total water cooler horror. But filling your review with "Bill Murray was awesome!" and "Clown zombie was scary!" is not gonna cut it.

To get people to comment, you now have to make fun of the audience for no apparent reason. Why? Because they won't see it coming! Like a bad M. Knight movie, you'll sucker the reader into a false review read and then make fun of them because they didn't see the twist coming.

I'm writing this totally buck naked.

See! There ya go. Who saw that coming? Fuck, it's kinda chilly in here and even I didn't see that horrible horrible thought in the middle of this lesson.

Lesson 4: Arterial Spraying + Gratuitous Nudity + Lists Lists Lists! = Jello

Who doesn't like jello? It can look like brain matter, jiggles like a pair of D cups and it taste yummy. As a horror blogger, there are a few foolproof things to write about that will get people hyped.

1.) Writing about gore and splatter movies gets people highly excited. Everybody loves a good arterial spraying and decapitation so writing a lot about splatter movies is guaranteed to get people to word verify.

2.) China can't see pornography so they have to rely on you to post nudity in your blog to get their fix. Write about nudity in horror, post pictures of horror hotties and talking about hottest zombie women can only get that hit counter moving.

3.) When you're scraping the bottom of your brain for something to write about, the old reliable horror list is the way to go. Who doesn't like a list? Like some mac and cheese, you can nuke up a list in about 2 minutes. Shit, it don't even have to be a good one.

Lists are like cocaine to horror fans. We're addicted! Look, I'll show you.

Top 3 Japanese Horror Movies where technology tries to kill you

1.) The Ring
2.) One Missed Call
3.) Pulse

See...that list got you as high as Lindsay Lohan at a BYOW party.

Lesson 5: Be a productive member of the horror blogosphere, Comment!

Well this is actually the hardest of all because you have to visit at least a dozen sites and leave your mark. Long, elaborate comments on the other person's blog is good. If you didn't agree with what they wrote, say so. People love defending their work and they will reply to your comment.

Instigate a tsunami of replies by disliking something everybody likes and leaving a comment. They'll all be so intrigued that they'll comment on your blog and if your lucky...send you hate mail.

If you want to be a "good" blogger, leaving a comment praising the article is the way to go. But don't expect it to be regifted.

Well there you have it. This concludes Horror Blogging 101. If I get a lot of people interested in this class, we'll have a 102. OK I see you raising your hands. If you have a question, leave a comment and I will definitely answer it.

Class dismissed!


  1. I write all my posts naked.

  2. Awesome post! I think your advice is spot on and you are so right about the perfect name. I get more compliments on the title of my blog than for anything else, which is why I picked it, so I win! And I love doing lists and I have a ton of them ready to go at any moment when I have nothing good to write about! You did forget one thing though, spell check. Even with it, I still make mistakes, but without it...oh man.

    I'm naked right now.

  3. This rocks. I had to smile when you talked about post titles. When I started my blog in July I just had titles that said the movie title and the year. Then one day I was frustrated that I only had like 10 views total on my view counter- so I read a help for blogging article much like this (although not as cool). In it he said an interesting post title is what grabs people! So I went back and changed all like 90 something maybe more of my post titles to something funny and witty- now all my post titles are funny and witty and people LOVE IT. Much like how Matt gets more compliments on his blog title- so do I get more on my blog titles. Deeelightful!

  4. Very informative post, J. Yes I agree that Blogger is the way to go for starting up a blog the first time around. Some bloggers outside of the community I frequent now keep telling me to make a move to Wordpress due to its better user interface. I was never given a real specifics, but I personally have no problems with using Blogger right now. I am glad you mentioned one difference that sticks out for me: Blogger might be better for me due to the type of content and themes I enjoy reading about on a daily basis.

  5. Good post! Nice bit of encouragement and helpful tips!

    Just take your time and be respectful of your readers and your subject. Visit other blogs and raise hell. Become part of the community! It's fun and you can express your opinion with people who are enthusiastic about debate and bashing and being pricks and being thoughtful and being supportive and being jerks, but most of all LOVING HORROR FILMS!

    Now if only the audience of this jaded viewer blog could take time to wipe out the old food from their beards and clips their toenails once in a while...

  6. I truly appreciate a hearfelt criticism, and I absolutely love one with a resolution as well! Fantastic post. This should be emailed out with password verification to new bloggers. If they ever make a sequel to SUMMER SCHOOL and can't get that dude that's on NCIS, this post should serve as all the creditials you'll need.

  7. I visit so many other blogs that at times somebody has written a post that I was thinking of writing. I mean has that ever happened to anyone before?

    I'm sure we're all veterans here but I want to know what the rookies think.

    Rookie horror bloggers? What's your take on my suggestions?

  8. Where was this a year ago!!!!

    And ahem, I love Sonic Youth and Trick 'r Treat. Take that! pew pew pew!

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  10. Sweet! This was actually a lot of help... but I think I'm already doing most of this stuff... except the lists. Lists bore the crap out of me unless they're snarky as hell.

    I guess I'm just impatient. I just started my blog about a month ago.

  11. Now this was great, really! I have a question...What about all the spam? I recently started a blog and have been spammed like CRAZY. And honestly, although I DO love your blog, The only reason I found it was, me trying to spread the word of my new site.
    So, like you, I totally support new horror blogs and people spreading the news about a genre they have a passion for. But are all the spammers ruining blogs?

  12. MoreThanHorror - The spam is something thats unavoidable. Put in the filters and hope for the best. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful.

  13. Thanks or this. You're my first inspiration on writing a horror blog. Thanks ^_^

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  22. I'm not even going to lie... this was very informative and I will absorb every piece of sustenance therein.

    I also can't lie about when I watch a horror flick to take some notes for Cinema Slayer, my hands are always down my pants. And there may also be some Cheeto dust on the floor.

    But that's not the point.

    The point is is that I've been blogging about horror for almost two years now and I'm glad that I finally ran into your blog. Hotchka! I dig it. Keep up the great work!

    Make sure you sweep up when your done.

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