Much of my horror work is set in Victorian times, a period of great interest to me. I love working on stories from that time because the research is an absolute pleasure.
A time when street lighting was so poor you could scarcely see your own hands let alone those of the murderer reaching out for you... A time when leaps in science abraded the religious sensibilities of the Establishment... A time when engineers forged the future in stone, steel and steam.
I have a particular fondness for the tea trade of the old British Empire, a love of pharmacy, phrenology and quackery.
When you throw all of this into the mix - no, that's wrong, this was all already there in the mix - when you learn enough about that mix, you find the perfect backdrop for a horror tale.
Where better to hide a monster than the bosom of propriety, the Middle-class terraced home? What better venue in which to consider your wrongs than the bustling gin palace? Can the delicate tinkling of China teacups dampen the screams of your victims? Can there be a more mysterious place on earth than the foggy London docklands at night, where shadows gather and a body breaks the surface of the filthy Thames? Perhaps you'd prefer a visit to the asylum, or to catch something nasty in that brothel in the bowels of a rookery?
The nineteenth century has its barbed hooks embedded right into my cheek and I can't escape. Don't much want to either.
So if you feel like joining me, I know a couple of good stories...
Jack Rollins, author of The Cabinet of Dr Blessing and The Seance
I AM AN AUTHOR, BLOGGER AND A JOURNALIST.
“Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.”