Saturday, January 29, 2022

Blog Tour and Giveaway: The Haunting of Black River Forest by Jaydeep Shah

The Haunting of Black River Forest tour banner
Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Haunting of Black River Forest by Jaydeep Shah. This blog tour was organized by Lola's Blog Tours. On my stop, I have a spotlight of the book as well as a fantastic top ten list from the author. There's also the tour wide giveaway for a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card or a digital copy of the book. Be sure to visit the other stops on the tour for more content. Enjoy!
The Haunting of Black River Forest book cover
Title: The Haunting of Black River Forest
Author: Jaydeep Shah
Publication Date: December 14th 2021
Print Length: 40 pages
Genre: Horror
A forest of blood and corpses. The land of a cold-blooded psychopath.

In Black River Forest, it’s best not to wander too far off the beaten track. There’s no telling what you might find.

Mia and Oliver have long wanted to explore the forest, and one cold, rainy October day, a week before their fifth anniversary of the day they met, they finally make the trip.

But they’ve heard the rumors as well. The haunting. A psychopath hidden somewhere amidst the towering trees. Too many missing. Too few answers.

It’s only rumors, though. Stories. And stories can’t hurt you. Yet as Mia and Oliver venture deeper into the Black River Forest, they’ll soon discover that there’s more haunting this quiet woodland than hikers and bears.

The psychopath is very real. And he’s excited to meet them.

From Jaydeep Shah, author of Tribulation, the first book of the Cops Planet series, “The Haunting of Black River Forest” is a bloody, spine-chilling story best read with the lights on.

The Haunting of Black River Forest graphic
Jaydeep Shah author picture
Jaydeep Shah is an avid traveler and the author of gripping horror, thriller, and romance stories. As a bachelor’s degree holder in Creative Writing, he aims to entertain as many as people he can with his stories. He is best known for Tribulation, the first book in the “Cops Planet” series.

In addition to those books, The Shape-Shifting Serpents’ Choice, Jaydeep’s first young adult flash fiction written under his pen name, JD Shah, is published online by Scarlet Leaf Review in their July 2019 issue. Currently, he’s endeavoring to write a debut young adult fantasy novel while working on a sequel to his first apocalyptic thriller, Havoc.

When Shah is not writing, he reads books, tries new restaurants, and goes on adventures.

Top Ten Things That Make for a Killer Horror Novel
by Jaydeep Shah

Before I started writing, I always wondered what elements make a killer horror novel. I read many articles. Some of them saying a few different things. I was confused which one to focus on. However, as I continued reading horror books and writing horror stories, I started understanding the concept of a killer horror novel.

Top ten things that help an author to write a killer horror novel are these:

1. Strong villain
When I say strong villain, I don’t mean make him strong physically. He can be weak physically. He can be mentally weak. He may have any type of disability. What I mean is that the villain should be smarter than the protagonist. Villain should be a few steps ahead of the protagonist’s thoughts. Because what drives a novel is the conflict and obstacles the protagonist must face. And only the villain creates those conflicts and obstacles for him.

When you create a strong, powerful villain, readers would love to read the story to find out how the protagonist will achieve his/her goals against a strong antagonist.

2. Conflict and obstacles
Conflict and obstacles also play a significant role to make a killer horror novel. The protagonist must face challenges he might find difficult to overcome at first. The conflict that could trigger the audience’s interest to continue reading the story to find out what’s about to happen next. Before adding conflicts to your story, you will need to decide if you want your protagonist to stay the same throughout the story or want to see him grow. Mostly, readers would love to see the characters growth as they move forward in the story. To do so, there must be enough conflict in the story for the characters to learn new things.

3. Frightening setting
Another most important thing to write a killer horror novel is setting. It really doesn’t matter how strong characters you have created, and powerful obstacles you have introduced in your novel; if your setting is not frightening enough, you cannot keep the readers attached to the story. To keep the readers on the toe to continue reading your novel, you must have a frightening setting that maybe enough to feed the readers’ horror appetite. To create a frightening world, you may take inspiration from other horror movies, TV shows, and books. You may also take inspiration from online images of real and unreal haunted places. This way, you will have more idea what type of world you want to create, and which horror elements you want to add to create a frightening setting.

4. Attention grabbing hook
As important as the conflict, setting, and the characters, the hook is also significant. For the novel, the hook can be from a line to a few paragraphs or maybe even few pages. The hook plays the major role to grab the audience’s attention. If your hook is not powerful enough, readers may stop reading the story only after reading the first sentence or a paragraph.

The hook must be an introduction to your world, and the characters and their goals. The more information your hook contains, the more chances you have to keep the readers continue reading your story.

5. Beginning, Middle, and End
To make your novel the best, your story must follow common rule of thumb of writing. Your story must be divided in three parts: Beginning, Middle, and End.

Beginning is where you introduce your world, a conflict, the characters, and the characters’ goals. This is the best chance for the authors to hook readers to the story.

Middle is where the main story takes place. All the conflicts between characters, and how they try to win the battle, how the characters change to achieve what they want. The tension increases. Series of events take place one after the other. Minor crises are resolved but not the major ones.

And finally, End is where you resolve the major crises. End is where the readers would have a clear knowledge if the protagonist won or failed. Here is a chance to create a happy ending!

6. Create real emotions
Another element to connect the readers to the story is the emotions. As an author, you must know how your characters will feel during all the ups and downs. Think about real-life people, how they react to any events in their lives. Readers must experience the same through characters’ acts. If you create strong real emotions, the readers will feel they are the living the life of the characters. This way, the readers will stay connected to your story. When I say real emotions, I mean the emotions real-life people may have when they fall in love, when their beloved ones die, when they win an event, when they lose something, and so on.

7. Introduce some common fears and anxieties
Some common fears and anxieties include the nightmares, imagination of one’s death, getting locked in a building, and so on. When you add these types of common fears and anxieties, readers tend to show more interest in your story to find out how the characters will find a solution to exit the situation. The reason is that we all fear something. We all have some type of anxieties: what will happen if xyz happens? What will happen if I couldn’t go to work for a week? Etc. That is why I think it is better to have some common fears and anxieties in a story to keep them attached to the characters to trigger their interest to continue reading the story.

8. Add as many as details
Novel is just not a long form of a fictional story. It is a fictional story that should feel like a real one. To connect the readers to your story, it is important to add as many as details in it. Take enough time to describe your world and characters. Add every detail about your characters. What do they want? What are the crises they are going from? What are their goals? If possible, describe their past. Add backstory of the character(s). The novel should describe every detail of the world, the setting, the plot, and the characters in depth.

9. The pace
I have been publishing short stories for five years. What I have learned is that if I had written those stories in form of a novel, I could have attracted more readers. The pace is critical in story writing. If you want to build tension and pull the readers out of their comfort zone, the characters must struggle, and you can do that by slowing down the pace to build tension to let the next fright chill the readers.

10. Add twists and cliffhangers
Twists and cliffhangers tend to trigger the readers’ interest to find out what happens next in the story. If you want to make your story a page-turner, cliffhangers are essential. Twists are also a good idea to create a thrilling atmosphere and keep the readers engaged to the story. Twists and cliffhangers are great way, I believe, to make the story more suspenseful and gripping.

Before I take a leave, thank you, All the Ups and Downs, for having me as your guest today. Also, thank you everyone who read this post for your precious time and staying with us.

Keep showering your love and support! Thank you! 😊
- Two Winners: $50 Amazon gift card and an eBook of The Haunting of Black River Forest by Jaydeep Shah through Bookfunnel (US Only)
- Eighteen Winners: ebook of The Haunting of Black River Forest by Jaydeep Shah through Bookfunnel (INT)

(All the Ups and Downs is not responsible for this giveaway, its entries, or the prizes. Lola's Blog Tours and the author assume all responsibility for this giveaway.)


  1. If I read The Haunting of Black River Forest by author Jaydeep Shah at night, I would have to keep all the lights on!

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  2. Looks like an interesting book.
    Thanks for the contest. 

  3. This cover & excerpt look fantastic!

  4. Do you have any advice for new writers?

  5. Seems like this would be one intriguing book.