Thanks to Jo Wyton for tagging me!
What is the working title of your book?
The Selkies of Scoresby Nab.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
I’m a scuba diver and one of the most magical things I’ve ever done was diving with seals. This rekindled my love for the Selkie legends – although I’d never come across one from Yorkshire. So I decided to create one. I used the viewpoint of a boy whose mother was a seal – but who did not know.
What genre does your book fall under?
It’s a children’s historical fantasy. (It makes me feel ancient to call the Sixties history – but they are to ten-year-olds!)
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a film version?
I think it would be have to be animated. I’d love actors with convincing Yorkshire accents to do the voice overs, mind you. Dame Judi Dench would do a fine Grandma and Sir Patrick Stewart, Granddad. But the central younger characters would be better off as complete unknowns.
What is a one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When troublesome Mattie Henshaw is sent to his grandparents’ house on Scoresby Nab, he doesn’t expect to discover a sea-going family he never knew he had, or to have to save them from slaughter.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I don’t have an agent – yet. It has been long-listed for the Mslexia Children’s Novel Competition 2012, though.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
I wrote the first draft as the main work in my MA in Creative Writing from West Dean College which I finished in one year ( 2011)
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I think it’s unique. It has a distinct Northern voice – so you might be reminded of David Almond‘ s writing or ‘Kes’, and there are magical parts that might make you think of Katherine Langrish‘s work or Pat Walsh‘s.
Who inspired you to write this book?
My amazing taskmaster of an MA tutor, Greg Mosse ( yes, he is husband to Kate Mosse) and way back in history, my old English mistress, Miss Grey – who believed in me.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
If they have ever wanted to swim like a seal , or enjoyed the magic of the sea, then this is a book for them.
I haven’t got anyone else to tag – would you like a go? Please?