Have you yelled 'Boo!' at someone and then felt foolish when they weren't frightened? Scaring people is a complicated business. Rico Patel became a scare master when he started working at a tourist attraction in London, scaring visitors every day. He was so successful at his first job that he now travels around the world, recruiting actors for different attractions, teaching them how to scare people. 'Scaring people is not about haunted houses, or pretending that we are Casper the Ghost. We portray ourselves as serial killers; and it's all about having the control and focus to get into someone's personal space,' Patel says. In order to better understand the nature of fear, Patel reads up on psychology. He looks into the psychology of fear, and also into how the minds of serial killers work. 'Serial killers ... are very focused. Actors [in scare attractions] have to [put themselves into the mindset of] serial killers so that they can focus for the show,' he says. Patel says scaring from afar is much less effective than invading someone's personal space. You've also got to avoid laughing or joking, or you'll fail to create genuine fear. Different aspects of scare attractions affect different people. It could be the silence, the darkness or the feeling of someone rushing up to them. Often they may be reminded of a real situation they have experienced. What is it that Patel enjoys about his work? 'It's the smile and screams ... afterwards,' he says. 'You feel really frightened when you watch a horror film, but you smile when you exit because you're actually happy [about being scared]. 'Emotions are rising up inside you. It all builds up inside you until you ... scream.' With all his experience scaring others, Patel often forgets to stop scaring people when he leaves work. 'It's a habit [to scare people]. Sometimes I don't mean to scare them, but I have been focused and I [scare] people on trains. 'Scaring people is part of my life. It's an everyday thing and I love doing it. So the saying is 'Being scared is the new version of being happy',' says Patel. To give yourself a fright, visit the new SCREAM attraction at Madame Tussauds, The Peak. Call 2849 6966 for details.