Tuesday, 1 November 2016

666 Anthology

This is the book I mentioned yesterday! There it is now, out in the world, ready to frighten readers... It includes 32 short (666 words exactly) horror stories. Some are written by established authors, some are stories that were submitted to a writing competition organised by Fantastic Books Publishing. The ebook is available at the publisher’s online store and the paperback (and the Kindle edition) on Amazon.

One of the stories in the collection, “Entombed”, is something of a weird tale that I wrote together with my husband, Marko Susimetsä. I had the initial idea some time ago already – but it was just that, an idea, and it left me asking, “then what”. I told my husband about it, and he immediately said, “What if this happened?” And it was just the right thing! That was how it had to go. We’ve been collaborating quite a lot recently, and this is one of the best things about it: two brains are better than one (ghouls would agree with me :P), and we often bounce ideas back and forth and inspire each other. It also helps to know that if you get stuck, you’re not alone; you can talk about the problem and try to... make it go away. And it’s also a lot of fun!

So we had an idea for something we knew would be a short story. I wrote some notes and saved them in my “thoughts” file (I lack the confidence to call them ideas). Then the competition came up, and we decided to try and see if the idea might evolve into a suitable story. Making it exactly 666 words long (or short) was a bit of a challenge, since we both tend to think in terms of longer stories. But we kept the word limit in mind while writing the first draft and thus did not end up with a huge amount of words to cut. It took some wrestling with words, but eventually we had the required 666. And we even managed to sneak in a Conan the Barbarian reference. ;)

We're still waiting for our copy (must have the paperback edition), so I haven't read the other stories in the anthology - but I have read other stories by some of the authors, and I have a feeling this is a collection of truly chilling tales.


  1. Hi Ulla,

    happy new release, congratulations! It sounds great and I'm in love with the cover.
    It also sounds really challenging... with the spookily precise word count. So I will be heading over to the store in a minute... that will be the perfect companion for our mini-vacation :).
    (He, and we may just be coming to claim a signed copy eventually *pretty please* *offers bribes in form of chocolate and rum*)
    Best wishes,
    and congratulation to you and Marko both!

    1. Hi Kathy,

      and thank you so much! :)

      Yes, the cover is fantastic - and the precise word count was indeed a bit of a challenge. Once we got close enough, there was some "but if we take this out, we must add something somewhere... and if we add this word here, we must cut something from somewhere else..." But it was possible, after all. :)

      Haha, you don't need to offer us any bribes, we'd be happy to sign a copy for you! :)