How did you come up with the idea for your story in History and Horror, Oh My?
I had the core idea some time ago while watching the 2011 BBC adaptation of Great Expectations. It sat around unused, but always agitating to be used, until the call for submissions to History and Mystery, Oh My! and I had the idea of combining it with what could have been the hook for a more traditional ghost story.
Did you encounter any obstacles in researching the setting?
No. All the elements involved were once I'd previously done research on, so I was able to draw upon that. It helps to write about things that interest you - that way the research is mostly done and never seems like work!
Do you have a favorite historical period you enjoy reading or writing about?
I love learning about all periods of history and like to vary the eras and locations I write about. However, I do tend to gravitate particularly towards ancient and Biblical History, Celtic History (ancient to modern), Arthurian research, the Wars of the Roses, the Tudors, the Victorian and Edwardian periods and the Roaring Twenties. Historical linguistics is a field of particular interest to me.
Do you have some special education that helps you write historical fiction, or do you deal with history in your profession?
I have a BA in History and Welsh History from Aberystwyth. Sadly, I didn't get to pursue it further, but I have written a few historical articles.
What are you working on now?
I'm currently working on several short stories aimed at forthcoming anthologies, a couple of booklets that I'll releasing through my own press, Atlantean Publishing, and a pitch for a new project from April Moon Books. In the longer term, I need to make time to work on a couple of novel ideas (one of which is an alternate police procedural and the other steampunk) and plan to release some short story anthologies.
On the history side of things, I have a longstanding project involving Biblical history that I would like to actually bring to fruition.
Okay, so you're an author. What do you enjoy reading?
I like to read widely and will have a go at anything, fiction or non-fiction that takes my attention, but I do like James Patterson and Clive Cussler for escapism, and, because I write a lot of related fiction, I frequently reread the stories of HP Lovecraft, Robert W. Chambers, Clark Ashton Smith and Arthur Machen. The Brontes are an obsession of mine, so I reread their work and books about them frequently. Currently, for research, I am reading books about Napoleon III and the Prussian siege of Paris.