Frequently asked questions
Here are the answers to some commonly-asked questions. If you have a question that isn't answered here, you can ask on the Ask page...
When are your next books coming out?
If it's not listed that means I don't have a date as yet.
- Deadlock (Darcie 3) and Water Thief now out as paperbacks and ebooks - see front page for links to purchase.
- BIG new series that should appeal to Companions' fans in April 2013. Young Knights of the Round Table.
- I also write for teen readers as Joss Stirling and Eve Edwards so please see those websites for news on other books.
Why the delay on Cat and Darcie continuations?
Commercial decision by the publishers facing a sluggish book market so please do not blame the author. I've solved the Darcie one by going straight to you. The jury is out on Cat for the moment.
How many Cat Royals?
There will be nine (I hope but can't promise!). I am waiting to hear if the publisher wants to take the final parts and this depends on sales figures across what is already a long series. I might have to find another route to round up her story for you all.
How old is Cat?
She starts out as 12 or 13 in 1790 - work it out!
Will there be any more Companions?
Yes, I'm writing a new series set in the same world of the SPMC. Water Thief, featuring George Clamworthy and his companion creature, Malvin, now available - see my home page.
How do I join the Companions Club?
This no longer functions beyond the fun assessment on line as the publisher (OUP) have wound it up after two years of sending out packs. We might well return to the idea for the new series though when it finally comes out.
Any tips for an aspiring writer?
Keep on writing through until end of first draft without worrying about
getting it absolutely right - you can always go back once you've got
the whole story down.
Keep a notebook to hand.
Enjoy writing for its own sake as publication is a hit and miss affair.
See Tips for Writers page for more ideas.
Where do you get your ideas from?
All sorts of places - reading, things I see by chance, research into the past, my own experiences.
In the case of Cat Royal, it started with the theatre. I read a lot about the history of Drury Lane and as a result began to daydream about living there and thus Cat was born.
For the Companions, it began with my own experience of clubs outside school. I asked myself 'What if these clubs were magical, secret and far more exciting?' and thought up the Society for the Protection of Mythical Creatures.
The Ship Between the Worlds came all in one go, sitting in the sunshine looking at the Sheldonian Theatre in Oxford.
Dragonfly was inspired by culture clashes!
Darcie Lock by my life as a diplomat some years ago.
Wolf Cry (The Silver Sea), partly thanks to a voyage to Norway, but also from reading up on the lesser known facts about Vikings, the Sami and the presence of Africans in the north during the Dark Ages.
The Glass Swallow is inspired by the crash of the financial systems - not my usual area of interest but it got me wondering...