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After picking a subgenre of horror to play with. It is time to put your story idea through its paces to see if you have enough material to turn it into a 400 page book. I put every book idea through this process and if I can't come up with 40 sentences, then I let it percolate a lot longer before I start writing it or decide it doesn't have enough raw material and discard it. You can read more about my process here.

External Conflict scenes follow the effects of the evil on the entire cast or story world.

The intent of these scenes is to scare the pants off of your readers. You have to confine them, torture them with something suspected but just out of sight. The menace has to be believable and constitute a mortal threat to one, some or all. Panic rises. Suspicion shifts.

In these scenes, the protagonist and/or victims are chased down a dark corridor, finds the journal with the ghost’s picture, or searches the library for who used to own the creepy house. They get locked in the cellar by the demon as the house goes up in flames.

In the final external scenes, the threat is removed, unless it is banished to return in the sequel.

List ten scene ideas for how the protagonists and the rest of the cast confront the evil, gain ground, lose, then win (or lose?).

For more about how to craft plots using conflict check out, Story Building Blocks: The Four Layers of conflict available in print and e-book and check out the free tools and information about the series on my website.

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