Recently, whilst going through an old book of mine, I found inserted there a typewritten page.

I blinked, both in surprise and joy. A quick read told me that, for over 10 years, I’d been lying to all those press interviewers.

“When did you first start writing?” was the usual question.

We’d be sitting in a cafe. The interviewer with pen or recorder in hand.

Looking him or her squarely in the eye, I said:

“I started writing short stories in my early 20s. The first one I ever wrote was a ghost story. From there all my stories have been of the same vein.”

Bull crap!

Here’s the evidence.


I’d written a full-blooded horror story when I was 14 or 15!

I recall now that I was messing about with an old typewriter. No wordprocessing then!

For me the stained page holds such nostalgia. I hope you’re able to read some of it. That vampire eventually founds its way into my novel Dark Demon Rising and “Night of the Pontianak” in my Woman Who Grew Horns short story collection.

Although “The Thing in the Jungle” is very succinct, it’s not a particularly good story. Nor well written.

But you’re got to start somewhere!

What was your first piece?