I am Mr. Welldone.
No, just kidding, it’s Kris, the author of Ichor Falls and Candle Cove, the reason why you found me. I know the site’s been dead quiet for a long while now, and I’ve been wanting to write more horror, but I have a problem. I can’t. I’m so meta about everything nothing scares me lately. No ghost, no unseen stalking spirit, no lumbering, stitched nightmare. I feel like I understand every trope.
As you may know, traditional horror/suspense/thrillers don’t do a lot for me — for example, the Scream movies or any of their ilk. I can’t get worked up about a guy with a bladed weapon, and the reason is, I know their motive. They want to hurt me, they want me to know fear as I die. I get that, I get all of it. So when he puts the sword through the door and it startles me, now I have to fight him, and it’s just brains vs. brawn, or brawn vs. brawn, and I’m gonna lose, and he’s gonna get me. The end. It just doesn’t inspire the same feeling of dread that an alien entity does, a completely foreign state of existence like something unknown from the depths of the sea, or a haunting. That’s why they scare me so much — because to deal with something, you have to be able to form a pattern. You have to be able to begin to understand them.
I understand a serial killer. He has to conform to the laws of physics; he probably can’t break in without making a lot of noise. And if he gets me, I guess he gets me. I die. Or I get tortured and then die. Misery is terrible, but it doesn’t frighten me; the unknown frightens me. The appropriation of innocence frightens me, like you see in Candle Cove. (If you want to read what I have to say about why I did Candle Cove and its meta legacy, here’s a blog post about it.)
And attempts to frighten me, other stories — there’s a lot of good creepypasta out there that does get me, but it’s also very formulaic. The ritual ones I never understood! How can anyone be expected to remember all that stuff? Who would even bother? And usually the reward is to be cursed and miserable forever. What? Really?
Anyone here watch Suicide Mouse? That meme? I haven’t heard the audio. I just watched the first five seconds and shut it off. Why, because it was frightening? No, because it was supposedly made in the 1930s, but the animation looks like it was done in Mario Paint. Have some pride for God’s sake. Do your job, scare people. Force them to imagine a little more, don’t lay it all out on a plate. People don’t stagger out of a screening of something and raise a gun to their temples. If they do, there’s a much longer buildup. Make me think about it! Haunt me with it, haunt the reader with it after the story’s over.
Anyway. My point is, I don’t know what to get scared by. Who’s seen something in the vein of horror I’m describing? Anyone? If I can’t… get creeped out, I don’t know how I can write more. I know it’s out there. Marble Hornets is excellent… I was a big fan of the Josef K Stories… I just need that consistency. That slow burn. Can you help me find it?
Just wanted to share a link from Shannon. If you are a fan of moody horror and haven’t seen the film version of Pontypool, the BBC has done a radio drama version of the same story with the same actors. I’m listening to it and it’s arguably as good so far. It’s definitely worth the hour-long listen.
Saturday morning my friend Brendan Adkins introduced me and a group of players to Geiger Counter, a “cooperative survival horror” RPG that seemed more like group storyboarding than an actual game. I think it would be great to brainstorm a story out using Geiger Counter as a tool.
It was rooted in the mythos of Ichor Falls, and as far as Ichor Falls stories go, it actually adhered pretty well to the town. A library burned to the ground, the Amish children’s holiday Totenkinder figured heavily, and a driverless carriage that demanded a driver. It was pretty fascinating and genuinely upsetting at some points. I can see how it would be super effective late at night in the right setting. Thanks, Brendan, and the poor townspeople of Lucy, Chip, Jennifer, Katerina, Amos, Herbert and Omar.
Hello all, long time no post (no, this isn’t a meta-horror story in a blog post format). Ross over at Role Playing Public Radio informs me that:
I run a tabletop RPG podcast called Role Playing Public Radio. We do normal shows, comedy skits and recordings of our tabletop games. Back in March, I ran a two part game based on your story ‘Candle Cove’ from Ichor Falls. Even though the game ran for 6 hours, we got a great response from our listeners, judging from the comments we got. You can see it here.
Anyway, I’m a huge fan of Ichor Falls which I promoted it on RPPR episode 42.
I meant to email you to give you a heads up earlier, but I forgot to until now.
Look forward for any future creepy pasta you make!
Thanks Ross. I’m sharing the link because it’s way too late at night to begin listening to a six-hour-long descent into the (fan-generated) world of Candle Cove, but I can’t wait to hear it and see what people think.
Even as I type this on my laptop, I’m thinking about how in this dark room my eyes have adjusted to where they can only see the bright screen, and nothing beyond it. It would be so easy for a bone-white face to rush at me from the pitch-black just to the left of my monitor and then vanish.
I moved to my desk and turned on the lamp just now; I couldn’t take that chance.
The first Ichor Falls book is available for purchase at my personal shop. It includes black and white reproductions of drawings, a little photography from the Falls, and a new town legend written especially for the book.
Here’s a real town with almost the same backstory as Ichor Falls, except that it’s probably not also damned.
Submissions have started to slow, guys. It ain’t that your stories aren’t good enough, there’s just a lot fewer. Plus I think the passing of Halloween made everyone feel less creepy.
This isn’t a story unless you pretend it is. I added some more background information on Ichor Falls to the Visitors Center page, like the approximate location of the town, current mayor, districts and names of lakes and newspapers. I’m not doing that to stifle creativity, but to keep things consistent, and not force you to reinvent the wheel if you want to reference a newspaper, for example. Go check out the new content.
Also, the original Ichor Falls story, Terminus, lives on the site now. It was the first thing I laid down, although it’s more tongue-in-cheek than scary.
Then somebody died! Boo! The end.