The most interesting fun fact about me is that I write fiction with elements of fantasy and myth for readers of all ages who like that kind of thing. I also write poetry, some of which has been published in Poetry Nook Magazine and The Bamboo Hut. I am an Irish mother of five (children), brought up in Yorkshire, and have lived in France all my adult life. I come from a background of artists, writers, and poets of the struggling kind, and although I was good at all the arty stuff at school, I was firmly steered away from it in the vain hope that I would be the first in the family to make some money.
When babies, exhaustion, and a strange medical condition finally shunted me out of my job in the wine trade I decided that dammitall I was finally going to write. By then, my eldest children were young teenagers and read a lot of fantasy, though rarely found books they thoroughly enjoyed. So, I decided I’d have a go. The idea that wouldn’t leave me alone was not, on the face of it, very auspicious. I imagined a classroom full of girls in heavy grey headscarves. One of the girls looks out of the window at the swirling grey dust that obscures a wilderness beyond, and I decided I was going to write about that girl and how she got out of the miserable situation I’d dumped her in.
The result, The Green WomanTrilogy, was picked up by a small publisher, Musa, and the first volume, The Dark Citadel was published in October 2013. The idea was to bring out a volume of stories set in the world of The Green Woman, entitled In the Beginning, followed very quickly by the sequel, The Subtle Fiend. For reasons best known to themselves, Musa never got round to doing either. So I did it myself. I was lucky enough to be able to count on the same editor, Susan Sipal, who did such a thorough job on The Dark Citadel. My mother’s genes helped with designing the covers of In the Beginning and The Subtle Fiend. I’m almost as proud of the covers as I am of the content.
Here is the blurb for The Dark Citadel, a very dark, unsparkly, dystopian fantasy for grown up young adults.
Evil is slouching into Providence. Will the awakening memories of a rebellious runaway be enough to send the demon back into the shadows?
Fifteen-year-old Deborah is angry and bitter. Rebelling against an arranged marriage to an idiot, she flees the oppression of Providence’s religious Elders to search for her exiled mother, the legendary Green Woman.
Zachariah, dark, brooding and unhappy crosses Deborah’s path as they both plot escape from the House of Correction. Dislike is instant and mutual, and Zachariah blunders off alone to seek the Green Woman’s magical Garden. In the desert wasteland, Jonah, the dog boy takes Deborah’s hand, first as a friend and guide, then as something more.
Abaddon, Lord of Hell is waiting to crush the green magic that will destroy his realm on earth. Deborah is discovering love and the mysterious power of her memories, but will this be enough to defeat the demon and the Elder’s regime, and dispel the shadows cast by the Dark Citadel?
To celebrate the release of The Subtle Fiend, on February 1st, Musa Publishing is running a promotion on The Dark Citadel: for a short period from February 1st it will be on sale at 99 cents (77 pence). I will also be offering In the Beginning FREE on Amazon until February 4th. (Amazon.co.uk – Amazon.com)
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