Hell Cat Blog Tour

July 13, 2017 - 6:32 pm No Comments

We are honored to be part of the Hell Cat Blog Tour. Today we here from Mark Cassell the man behind Hell Cat of the Holt. Tomorrow read my review of Hell Cat of the Holt

HELL CAT OF THE HOLT – a novella in the Shadow Fabric mythos

Available from

Amazon UK http://amzn.to/2ruB1ux

Amazon US http://amzn.to/2rJvqO5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From Pens to Pentagrams

“Stop f**king about and write some words” is the Writers’ HQ motto, and it’s something that us as authors should remember. The procrastination demon often creeps up on us, to pull our floppy minds into the distracting nonsense of social media. Perhaps it even drags our limbs towards the kitchen to make yet another cup of coffee… and grab biscuits!

Writers’ HQ host retreats and offer online courses. The retreats give writers, from any field and of any level, a day in which to focus. Indeed, to stop fucking about and write some words. It’s a room of collective energy, where we all hammer at our projects often without talking about our work. The aim is to hit your word target by the end of the day. Plus, they supply lunch and endless tea and coffee. And biscuits.

They have now expanded to include Birmingham, Cambridge, Cheltenham, Portsmouth, and Hastings, hosted by yours truly. I am excited to be part of the team and to host my first retreat on 13th of August 2017. As one of the most regular Brighton venue attendants, they stopped me from fucking about and helped me tune in to my debut novel, The Shadow Fabric (2014).

Since I went “all serious” with writing, I’ve written or edited most of my stories under their roof. During one retreat, my recently published Shadow Fabric mythos novella, Hell Cat of the Holt, underwent some ruthless red pen edits. It centres around the fictional village of Mabley Holt, and is a tale of ghosts, a sneaky demon, and a legendary black cat that stalks the woodland. Incidentally, this village draws inspiration from local areas such as Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells, and down to Hastings.

This particular town in East Sussex, England, is famous for its roots in history: the 1066 Battle of Hastings. Research for my novella led me to learn that in the 19th century, two mummified cats were discovered in the chimney of the Stag Inn while under restoration.

These cats were apparently the familiars of a local 17th century witch. Friendlier than most witches of that time, Hannah Clarke was seen to help prevent the Spanish Armada reaching Hastings, often using her powers for the town’s protection. For whatever reasons, she moved on, yet her familiars remained. Until the Great Plague hit.

Cats, rather than rats, were commonly assumed to be plague carriers and having been owned by a witch, this pair of animals were the first to succumb to accusations. For fear of any bad omen to befall the people by killing the cats, a decision was made to wall them in at the pub which led to their mummification.

I will add here that the WHQ retreat venue is not at the Stag Inn, it’s at the Southwater Area Community Centre in St.Leonard’s, just outside Warrior Square train station. More information about the retreat can be found at: http://writershq.co.uk/events/hastings-writers-retreat-first-time-everything-edition/

Gather your notebooks, laptop, or whatever magical instruments you need, and get your arse down to Hastings. I’ll make you write.

Mark Cassell lives in a rural part of the UK where he often dreams of dystopian futures, peculiar creatures, and flitting shadows. Primarily a horror writer, his steampunk, dark fantasy, and SF stories have featured in several anthologies and ezines. His best-selling debut novel THE SHADOW FABRIC is closely followed by the popular short story collection SINISTER STITCHES and are both only a fraction of an expanding mythos of demons, devices, and deceit.

Mark’s 2017 release HELL CAT OF THE HOLT further explores the Shadow Fabric mythos with ghosts and black cat legends.

The dystopian sci-fi short story collection CHAOS HALO 1.0: ALPHA BETA GAMMA KILL is in association with Future Chronicles Photography where he works closely with their models and cosplayers.

For one of Mark’s FREE stories go to: www.markcassell.com

Or visit the website: www.theshadowfabric.co.uk

 

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