Note that this guide is done from more of a mix of objective and subjective viewpoints. These are a few tips I have that come from both the wiki, and personal advice.
1. Read DA RULZ
Out of the troll language, now, read the rules; particularly the Quality Standards. Stories that get deleted for grammar, spelling, walls of text, and other things are more common than you think.
Also see the Style Guide for Writing. It covers a lot of common mistakes and errors users tend to miss, examples being the difference between "it's" and "its", and etc.
However, this section is going to be short, because come on; The quality standards reminders, though they can't be stressed enough, have been beaten into the ground, buried, dug back up, and then struck with a nuclear bomb. Still, worth it.
2. Pointless Violence isn't creepy.
Alright, so you're writing a story. It's good, has syntax, good character development, an original storyline, etc. But when you publish it... BOOM. It's gone. Deleted from sight. Why? Here, I'll tell you.
You used so much pointless violence and gore for shock value, it made the story just numbing, not creepy.
Creepy and numb are two different things. I find myself liking pastas such as "On the Bus" more than I do "Sweet Apple Massacre" (which was actually a fanfic, but nonetheless, it was gory enough to get the point across.) Granted, yes, I like both, I find that I as well as many others, unlike mainstream hollywood producers nowadays, find creepiness outside of gore.
A guy's arm doesn't necessarily have to be severed to give me a thrill. Can gore add to the story? Occasionally, but not often. I often evade the NSFW category unless I'm actually looking to find a pasta that will numb me for a bit.
But generally, from a normal person's point of view, I seek something that will make me afraid to peek around corners or go on buses because I may quickly age trying to leave it than I want to read about a guy getting decapitated.
3. Do you really want to kill that Character?
Let's face it: Creepypastas where someone dies are a dime a dozen. But ask yourself: Do I really want to kill this guy off? I'm saying you don't necessarily have to kill someone off or even just make them go insane to make them suffer a terrible fate. Now, I'm not saying ruin the entire story by capping it off with a generically written happy ending either.
Take for example, Slimebeast's works: Funnymouth and Abandoned by Disney. They were creepy, had atmosphere, and something bad happened to the characters involved. But neither one of the main characters died; one escaped and ran like hell (Abandoned by Disney) while the other, yes, was driven insane (sort of) (Funnymouth).
The point here is that same as excessive gore, it doesn't necessarily have involve someone dying to be scary.
4. Use enough Description, but not too much.
Which sounds better:
"The tree stood tall" or "The gnarled trunk of the tree stood, bending in the wind, but still towering over the people in its shade."?
See the difference?
Descriptive language is valuable in the story. It provides an image. It makes things interesting and gets the gears of the imagination spinning.
But, too much description is a hassle. Don't be like Stephen King and go bat shit crazy with it; the story will get boring if you spend thirteen paragraphs describing one leaf. Not that I really have a problem with Stephen King, but yeah.
It's not just description that matters; it's description in the right amount. I've been through dozens of stories where the sentences were bland and pointless, and left me with a headache afterwards, but I've also been on the other side, where I knew everything about that one leaf but nothing actionable happened for God knows how long.
Then there are the stories with the perfect amount of descriptive language; and they tend to be the better ones.
5. Use an Original Formula
Another thing I see when first pastas get deleted, is due to them being spinoffs. If you read a pasta and suddenly have an idea, you should probably dump that. If you read a pasta and are inspired by it and multiple others, you might have a shot.
I'm saying that it is extremely important for you to come up with your own formula when writing the pasta. Your own character, your own set of events, your own backstory, the whole nine yards.
I'll use a classic example; If you read Jeff the Killer and suddenly come up with an idea for your own psychotic serial killer, then I wouldn't recommend you spend your time writing, at least not yet. Why? Because more than likely it follows the formula mentioned in that link. Killer moves to new town, killer gets bullied, killer goes insane, killer mutilates self, killer kills family, killer escapes, the end.
The formula should be something you spent time coming up with yourself. Now, if you're unsure of whether a formula classifies as unoriginal or not, here's my advice:
- Google is your friend.
- Basically, do your research.
As I've said before, you don't know how many people I've seen rant about a spinoff being deleted. If they took time with their formulas, they probably wouldn't have had that problem in the first place.
6. Short is fine, but not too short.
Like description, length matters.
You don't know how many times I've seen a story that was completely pointless and wasted my time because it was only a paragraph long. Are there good short pastas and quick pastas? Yes. But most of the time, they only suceed in time wasting and annoyance.
However, not everyone who reads Creepypastas are avid readers, so you don't want to tl;dr them either. You need to find the perfect length to go to your story. Would the characters and plot function in a half a page, or is it just good enough to suck in the reader for another nine?
Examine these questions carefully, so you don't make your story bland, nor make it an eyesore.
BONUS TIP: If you add an image, PLEASE make it in something other than MS Paint.
I would normally cap it off at six, but for heaven's sake. Crappy MS Paint drawings ruin the story. If you think images have no effect on the story one is reading, you're sadly mistaken. I've seen good pastas turn to rotten compost heaps due to the author making the terrible decision to draw up a pasta monster in paint and tack it on to the story.