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Behind the Scenes

Murder at Ravenswood House

When I was asked to write a second Raven’s Edge story, I had thought I would continue the fairy tale themes of the first book. However, it wasn’t until I’d almost finished that I realised the story was a homage to those Gothic movies made by Hammer House of Horror, even though I’ve always been a wimp when it comes to scary films! I spend a lot of time hiding behind my fingers, especially when I suspect a jump shock might be coming up!

Tim Burton has always been someone I admire, especially his version of Sleepy Hollow, which is a lot more fun than the original book – sorry Mr Irving! And I’ve always loved ghost stories, especially the ones with headless horsemen and ghostly highwaymen.

Halloween is one of my favourite festivals, so it was fun to write a story set at this time of the year. The inspiration for the carnival in Raven’s Edge was one that used to take place in the Hampshire village of Titchfield, close to where I grew up. It was a family tradition that we would walk down to The Square and watch it every year, then visit the funfair afterwards. My grandmother would make her famous (rock hard!) ‘bonfire toffee’ as a treat and, because she came from the North of England, would carve us a turnip Jack-o’Lantern instead of a pumpkin. Now those things are proper scary!

I used to live in a little village just down the road from Glastonbury but, unlike Milla, I never got to go to the music festival!

The masks Lorcan uses in his performances are based on those incredible works of art I saw while visiting Venice.

Random Facts

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Murder at Raven's Edge Breathless Something Wicked

While I’ve never owned a tame raven like Lorcan (it’s illegal to keep wild birds as pets in the UK!), I did keep an eye on a baby magpie that ended up in my garden until he was confident enough to fly away with his family. We nicknamed him ‘Forrest’, after the Tom Hanks character in Forrest Gump, because he’d run around the garden rather than fly.

Although I’m quite happy to watch the antics of the birds in my garden, I become a bit nervous when they’re flying about my head. The same doesn’t apply to bats, weirdly…

The One About Forrest

A post about the fledgling magpie that set up a ‘fly camp’ in my garden.