Recently, Sirens Call Publications released its sixteenth anthology titled Voices from the Gloom – Volume 2. With ten stories contained within, none of them specific to any theme other than exceptional horror, we wanted to know what inspiration these authors were met with in writing their tales. Today we’ll be hearing from Hannah Sears and for those of you who don’t know too much about her, here’s a few tidbits…
Hannah Sears is a graduate student at Emerson College in Boston pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing. A Texas native, she enjoys reading, writing, and good tea. A fan of thrills and chills, she recently decided to try her hand at writing horror for her blog and fell in love. You can find her on Twitter at @feellikepdiddy or on her blog.
So without further ado, we turn you over to Hannah…
Driving in the Dark
Tenebris Ad Lucem came together—as stories often do—from an almost random confluence of events. I discovered Sirens Call Publications through the WordPress blogging platform and started reading different horror blogs for fun. I’ve never considered myself a huge fan of horror—I enjoy scary movies and stories, but never thought I would write it. However, there was an open submission on the Sirens Call Publications website (for a different anthology as it turns out) and I decided to try my hand at something spooky. I keep different notes on my iPhone—less romantic than a leather-bound notebook, but more practical—from the mundane grocery list to ideas for stories. When words or phrases pop into my head and grab my attention, I try to write them down. I know too well the frustration of knowing you had a fantastic line of dialogue that you neglected to record. Oftentimes, the phrases are dialogue or a description for a story I’ve been working on or thinking about, but on rare occasions it’s completely random. In this case, I remember the scene clearly.
I was driving home one night when I was still back in Texas, it was late and the frontage road was empty Maybe I’d been watching too much Criminal Minds or Supernatural—or, more likely, a combination—but I started to think about Evil. You can call me a cynic or whatever other names you choose, but I don’t believe people are inherently good. I believe everyone has a darker side. The basis for Tenebris Ad Lucem came from my thoughts on that final stretch of road before I reached home and it was a few short, simple phrases that later became dialogue in the story : ‘there is a Darkness within, a seething blackness begging to be set free. It is not the abyss staring back, it is the abyss reaching towards you… there is a darkness beneath the surface and it desperately wants to be free.” The quote lurked in a note filled with bits and pieces of fragmented thoughts until I found the prompt and started thinking about the nature of evil and if it’s possible that the deepest darkness is inside.
Thank you Hannah. Now let’s take a look at Voices from the Gloom – Volume 2:
In this second volume, you’ll encounter ten stories that will send icy shivers down your spine. It includes tales of two brothers who find an opening into another world behind their grandparent’s home; a reporter sent to investigate a haunted house only to find out it holds a more nefarious secret; and the story of a woman searching for her lover but when she doesn’t find him, the tale takes a demented twist.
Get lost in the different voices, let their horrific nature speak to you from the spaces between the shadows. Allow them to get into your head and wring the marrow from your soul…
Maynard Blackoak, Carson Buckingham, Alex Clarke, Kevin Holton, DW Gillespie, Erik Gustafson, Jacob Lambert, Patrick O’Neill, Hannah Sears, and J.T. Seate
Available for purchase at:
And here’s a short excerpt from Tenebris Ad Lucem…
4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
Father Alfric closed his Bible, rubbing the bridge of his nose where his spectacles pinched. The ache in his eyes sharpened and the dim light in the rectory made them water. He looked at the clock with a start. Already past ten o’clock; he had not meant to work so long. He hurriedly tucked the weathered Bible into his satchel, along with the sheaf of notes for his homily on Sunday. His third sermon in the new parish, and he meant it to be an excellent one. Pulling on his overcoat, he walked swiftly through the church and checked the heavy locks on every door. The flickering candles in their red glass holders lit the faces of the marble statues of the saints, casting their eyes into shadow. Father Alfric always felt their stone lips might part and speak at any moment.
The moonlight shone through the prized stained-glass windows depicting the crucifixion and resurrection. It turned the normally vibrant colors into ghosts of the sunlit patterns that decorated the floor and pews during the day. He knelt before the altar and crossed himself, praying for safety and protection as was his custom. Threading his rosary securely through his belt, he walked down the aisle towards the main door. His footsteps sent echoes murmuring to the vaulted ceilings. The shadows lurked behind the columns, pools of darkness that hid the gold-leafed paintings and colorful tapestries, the gently smiling saints in their alcoves.
Father Alfric fumbled with his keys as he reached the doorway. He swung open the big oak and iron-studded panel and pulled it quickly shut behind him, turning the big key in the lock as carefully as possible. It shrieked unnaturally loud in the cobbled street in front of the church. Alfric jumped slightly and peered over his shoulder at the shadows and the dark houses. He remembered the days when the church always remained open, a safe haven, and a place of sanctuary. But times changed. Father Alfric pulled his coat tightly around his neck and felt the beads of his rosary brush comfortingly against his wrist as he strode down the steps and turned towards home. The gas lamps that lined the darkened street usually looked cheery and Alfric enjoyed watching the flames dance. He liked seeing the line of fire guide him, as the Lord did the Israelites in the desert. Tonight, however, a fog came drifting down while he toiled in the rectory and the little lights shone fitfully, haloed in muzzy rings. The heavy mist seemed to be doing strange things to the echoes as well. Alfric found himself glancing over his shoulder from time to time, certain that he heard the footsteps of a companion somewhere behind…