01/21/2014 02:08 pm ET Updated Mar 23, 2014

Top 10 Scariest Movie Moments

As a fiction author, I'm often asked about the books and writers that influenced my style. There are some, to be sure -- among them Jack London, Anne McCaffery and the mandatory hat-tip to Stephen King -- but most of my key influencers come from the screen, not the page. Tarantino, Cameron and Carpenter, among others, have a bigger impact on my work than any print author.

That means I don't really sit down to write "books" as much as I try to create blockbusters that just happen to be on paper instead of film. Since I write horror (a paranormal-free, hard-science version of horror, sure, but there's no mistaking what I do), that means I visualize my stories playing out as horror movies. I'm therefore quite conscious of the elements that go into a great flick -- character, pacing, plot, etc. -- including something that really defines the horror genre: a shocking, signature scene.

You know what I'm talking about; those scenes that disturb you, that shake you up, that make you and your friends laugh in relief when the house lights finally come up and you get to see the sun rise one more time. Those moments that stay with you for years, even after most of the movie has faded away.

I'm influenced by movies as a whole, but also by those pitch-perfect moments. Here are 10 of my scariest.

Scariest Movie Scenes

Here's a three scenes that either didn't quite make the cut, or that badly de-poo'ed the teenage me and didn't sufficiently impact the grownup version.

THE DESCENT: camera scene

HELLRAISER: Frank's resurrection


Scott Sigler is the author of the new book Pandemic, the conclusion of the trilogy that began with Infected and Contagious.