For my second article in Littleport Life – the local community magazine – I interviewed horror writer, Julia Kavan, who has spent most of her life living in Cambridgeshire. Julia has taught creative writing classes locally for over ten years, whilst writing screenplays, novels, and short fiction. Her website is: www.adarkmiscellany.com
Julia, you’re no stranger to Littleport and The Fens. As someone familiar with the area would you say that it inspires your work?
I find the atmospheric location the perfect inspiration for ghost stories My current work in progress is partially set in Ely; the original idea coming from the tales of ghosts haunting the area around the cathedral and Cherry Hill. A walk in nearby Thetford Forest inspired my short story, Dreaming, Not Sleeping.
What attracted you to horror as a genre?
I love exploring the darker side of human nature, and horror is my favourite medium for this study. My tastes have always erred towards the dark side. As a child I sought anything scary and I loved horror stories as a teenager. No wonder then, that this is the area my writing wanders into – although I don’t always intend it to! I’m passionate about up and coming horror writers being able to make a name for themselves, so I’m exploring different ways of getting short horror stories ‘out there’, including through an online/e-magazine.
Tell us a little a little more about the e-magazine.
Massacre Magazine can be found at www.massacrepublishing.com. It’s a collaborative undertaking, giving new writers the chance to showcase their work in bite size chunks. If any readers have a short horror story lurking in a drawer or attic, they might like to send it in!
Massacre is still evolving, but it has been met with a lot of interest and enthusiasm. Whilst it’s rewarding working with other writers on the magazine, I’m also constructing a website to transfer my creative writing tutor skills to an online service for writers.
So, you don’t simply write stories all day?
I wish! Most writers these days have to diversify. The authors I know still earn their living with day jobs and freelancing as copywriters, editors and creative writing tutors.
Argh! The horrifying truth!!!
Update: Julia’s now launched her online service Revamped!