Prolific writer Matt Hilton on his exciting new book, inspired by the tragic loss of his daughter, Megan.
Originally posted on PAUL D. BRAZILL:
Back in 2005/2006 I was hard at work on a novel about a British vigilante who sets off to America in search of his wayward brother who has fallen into the sights of a serial killer. It was called ‘Jubal’s Hollow’ and featured a character called Evan Hive and his sidekick, Rink. Some of you familiar with my work will recognise certain elements of that description, and you’d be right in assuming that a few years later it would be published under the title of ‘Dead Men’s Dust’ and the first Joe Hunter thriller to hit the stands. But here’s the thing: between writing the original novel and publication a few speed bumps were thrown in my way. First, when it was written I didn’t have an agent or publisher. I was still a copper working the beat, and was writing in my spare time. Just as I finished writing the original and was about to send it out, my family suffered a terrible tragedy when we lost our seventeen-year-old daughter. As you might imagine, sending off to agents and publishers was the last thing on my mind for some time, and I admit to falling into a funk of grief for a long time. As part of the recovery process I actually put away my writing aspirations and picked up my paints and brushes and spent too much time at the canvas as opposed to the keyboard. But I guess I was always a writer and after about a year I began playing around with ideas again. Maybe it was because of my loss, but my mind was in a different place. It was dark, but it was also miraculous and filled with some kind of hope. Because of this I penned a novel about a father coming to grips with the loss of his own young family, but in a strange and unusual way.