Getting into writing – an interview with Catherine Cavendish

Catherine Cavendish

Following a varied career in sales, advertising and career guidance, I am now the full-time author of a number of paranormal, ghostly and Gothic horror novels, novellas and short stories. These include the Nemesis of the Gods trilogy – Wrath of the Ancients (out now), Waking the Ancients (to be published in April 2018) and Damned by the Ancients (to be published October 2018), plus The Devil’s Serenade, The Pendle CurseSaving Grace Devine and many more. I live with my long-suffering husband, and a black cat who has never forgotten that her species used to be worshipped in ancient Egypt. Serafina sees no reason why that practice should not continue.

We divide our time between Liverpool and a 260-year-old haunted apartment in North Wales.

What got you interested in writing?

I have been writing since I could hold a pencil and form words. I even tried my hand at writing before I knew how to. Sadly, the scribbles were unintelligible. It has always been a passion and I can think of no one event that triggered it off. Give me a blank surface and a pen and I’m off.

Tell us a little about your chosen genre.

I have written in a number of genres but horror – and especially historical, gothic, supernatural and ghostly horror, often with a touch of the Gothic – appeals most to me. I love dark, shadowy buildings, the fear of what might be lurking just out of sight, waiting… Will it be human? Or ghostly? I love to be gripped by that sort of delicious fear and that’s why I write it.

What are your happiest memories in your writing career?

One of my greatest moments was receiving an email from legendary horror editor, Don D’Auria informing me that I had won one of four places in a Gothic horror anthology competition. This was in the days of Samhain Publishing and I was honoured to join the same ‘stable’ as writers such as Ramsey Campbell, Hunter Shea, Jonathan Janz and many more greats of modern horror. In addition, J.G. Faherty, Russell James and Devin Govere – all writers I admire a lot – were part of the same anthology as my winning story. Quite a moment!

Achieving contracts with Kensington Publishing and with Crossroad Press (who re-published all my Samhain back catalogue) have also been great highlights. It’s always cause for celebration when a publisher says ‘yes’.

How do you handle success and failure?

I celebrate success – usually with champagne. As for failure? As a writer, you need to quickly develop a rhinoceros hide or you won’t survive for long. All –and I mean all – writers know failure and rejection at some point in their careers. Learn any points from it that will help you improve and then get on with the next project. That’s what I do anyway. Oh, and have a glass of champagne!

What makes you write when you’re exhausted and your fingers ache?

Frequently it is because I’m in the middle of a scene and I don’t want to lose the momentum. In common with so many writers, my characters drive the story onwards. I am merely the poor sap that has to hurry to keep up with what they’re saying and doing. I can hardly stop them in mid drama, can I? Even if my eyes are losing focus!

What is your advice to young and new writers?

Be resilient. Be prepared for rejection. Write and don’t stop writing. Write what you want to read yourself. Chances are if you want to read it, someone else will too.

Are you a traditionalist or a digital? (paper or eBook)

I’m both. I have staggering, heaving bookshelves and a packed Kindle. I love being surrounded by traditional books, but my Kindle is so useful when travelling or waiting for appointments

Do you blog?

I do indeed. I frequently blog about places, myths, legends and ghostly places connected with my stories

Do you self-publish?

Not at this time.

If you have a publication or promotion – tell us.

My latest novel is – as mentioned above – Wrath of the Ancients– the first in a trilogy called Nemesis of the Gods. Here’s what to expect:

Destiny In Death

Egypt, 1908

Eminent archaeologist Dr. Emeryk Quintillus has unearthed the burial chamber of Cleopatra. But this tomb raider’s obsession with the Queen of the Nile has nothing to do with preserving history. Stealing sacred and priceless relics, he murders his expedition crew, and flees—escaping the quake that swallows the site beneath the desert sands . . .

Vienna, 1913

Young widow Adeline Ogilvy has accepted employment at the mansion of Dr. Quintillus, transcribing the late professor’s memoirs. Within the pages of his journals, she discovers the ravings of a madman convinced he possessed the ability to reincarnate Cleopatra. Within the walls of his home, she is assailed by unexplained phenomena: strange sounds, shadowy figures, and apparitions of hieroglyphics.

Something pursued Dr. Quintillus from Egypt. Something dark, something hungry. Something tied to the fate and future of Adeline Ogilvy . . .

Wrath Of The Ancients

Available from:






You can find me here:

 Catherine Cavendish




Kensington Publishing

Crossroad Press

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