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When I first read Clive Barker’s Books of Blood—only a few years ago, relatively late, but I always say that books don’t have an expiry date—the opening story that served as a setup for the rest totally blew me away.

These volumes differed from the more conventional way of organising short stories into a collection based on theme, topic, or location. I loved Books of Blood so much because I never knew what kind of tale the next one was going to be. They were all amazing, but they couldn’t be more different from each other. In the six original volumes, you could find body horror, rampaging monsters, dark philosophy, ghost stories, Lovecraftian weird tales, slashers, comedy; horror without boundaries.

Over seven years ago, the phrase ‘Uninvited Words’ came to me while I was daydreaming, and first, I gave the name to my blog. The blog was an absolute failure because I didn’t know what I wanted to do with it. It also wasn’t clear to me what kind of writer I wanted to be. I posted writing advice, tutorials for writing tools, short stories of multiple genres, etc. Aimless. Unfocused.

So, I deleted the blog after a few posts which no one had ever read, but I wrote down the name because I still found it cool. I went back to practice. And when my horror short stories finally got some attention from magazines and online publications, I decided to organise them into a collection. I wanted to do something like Clive Barker’s Books of Blood because my stories also differed greatly from each other. One day, I was browsing through my old files and my eyes settled on The Uninvited Words blog. I found my title.

I had stories for the first volume, a title, but no story to start it all. An idea occurred to me during one of my free writing sessions: a piece set in a horror theme park where a monster would come to life and hunt down the guests, so I began working on it. I brainstormed how I could write an ending that gives the green light to a flood of horror tales, and so it became the grand opener.

I’m not sure how many volumes of The Uninvited Words will I conjure into existence, but the last story of the last volume will be the sequel of this one, and we will all see what happens to Janice, Alan, and the wraith.


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