LEGALIZING THE PLOT

LEGALIZING THE PLOT

The legal profession has always been a novelists’ treasure house, and lawyers themselves are a gift to writers of fiction.  If your plot has wound itself into a hopeless tangle, you can often solve matters by allowing the family solicitor to discover old documents or...
IN LOVE WITH THE VILLAINS

IN LOVE WITH THE VILLAINS

When portrayed on the grand scale, villains in fiction can be surprisingly fascinating.  Would vampires as a race have gained such worldwide appeal without a sinister undead gentleman in evening dress dominating the screen or the page?  Equally, would psychological...

SERIOUSLY SERIALIZING

When I began to write the first of the Michael Flint/Nell West haunted house series, I didn’t actually know it was destined to become a series. In fact I had never previously considered writing a series at all – or even so much as a trilogy. Despite working in the...

THE MOTIVES OF GHOSTS

Ghosts, like any character in a book, need a motive – a reason for haunting.  They don’t just turn up because there’s a vacant slot at the moated grange, or because the grey lady at the old rectory wants someone to make a fourth at bridge.  They don’t attend night...

THE MASQUERADE. A short story by Sarah Rayne

I seldom attend parties unless I think they might be of use in my career, so it was all the more remarkable to find myself attending this one.  This reticence is not due to shyness, you understand, nor to a lack of self-confidence – I value myself and my attainments...