Author Interview: Stephen Black

Welcome readers, to another addition to our author interviews. Today we are excited to chat with Stephen Black, a dark fantasy and horror writer from Northern Ireland. He is the author of the critically acclaimed, best-selling ‘Kirkwood Scott Chronicles’ series. He has also had short stories published by Quill & Crow Publishing House in their ‘Grimm & Dread’ and ‘Haunted’ anthologies, in addition to ‘The Crow’s Quill’ online literary magazine. Stephen is married with three children. In his spare time…hang on, Stephen doesn’t have any spare time.  

JMR-Welcome to the Books Delight, Stephen. Tell our readers where you live, what you do for fun and what does the perfect day look like?

SB- Thank you. I’m from Belfast, Northern Ireland. I’m very busy with my 9-5 job, in addition to my writing and editing work, so don’t have a lot of free time. I’m a bit of a home bird, so don’t like to stray too far from there. My wife and three children also keep me occupied with a hectic family life. I used to run quite a lot, so would hope to get back into that.

JMR-What’s your favorite historical time period? Why?

SB- It would be the nineteenth century. I studied the Napoleonic Wars at university, and my first book, Skelly’s Square, is centered around the Battle of Waterloo. I’m also interested in all things Victorian. Such a fascinating era to study.

JMR-Who is your favorite historical figure? Why? If you could ask them one question, what would it be?

SB- I don’t really have one. I’m much more interested in the ordinary people rather than famous figures. For example, the infantry soldier at Waterloo and their experiences would interest me more than anything Wellington or Bonaparte could say. The experience of standing in square formation as, all around, hell descends in the form of French cannon and cavalry. What was that like? That’s real history for me.

JMR- How did you come to be a writer of historical fantasy? What does writing historical fantasy allow you to do as a writer that you can’t do with straight historical fiction? How do you define historical fantasy?

SB- I’ve always been interested in history, particularly military history, and I studied Modern History at University. I grew up on the works of Tolkien, and C.S. Lewis is from Belfast, so historical fantasy was always the most logical path for me when it came to creative writing. The fantasy aspect allows for a little more artistic freedom while anchored within an accurate historical backdrop. I hope that I achieved that with The Famine Witch.

JMR- Stephen, tell us about your new book, The Famine Witch.

The Famine Witch’ is a dark historical fantasy set in Belfast. The year is 1847 and the island of Ireland is being ravaged by the famine, and accompanying disease, of ‘The Great Hunger.’ The cemeteries and hospitals are overflowing with the dead and dying, and societal norms are breaking down as crime and disorder soar. To add to this, a crazed killer stalks the streets at night, butchering young women. The locals refer to him as Bloody Hands. Amidst the chaos, nineteen-year-old Maggie Malone and her brother, Jinks, fight for survival before being dragged into a centuries-old feud between Bloody Hands and a malevolent force that haunts the mountain overlooking Belfast. The Cailleach, The Winter Queen. The Black Lady...

JMR- What projects do you have in the pipeline?

SB- I have several ideas, all set in Northern Ireland during the 1969-1998 Troubles, that are loosely connected. It’s a dark fantasy series with horror elements that leans heavily on the old gods of pre-Christian Ireland.

JMR- Tell our readers how to find you on social media and the web.

SB- Twitter - @stephenRB4

Instagram, Threads, & Facebook - @stephenblackauthor

JMR- What question were you hoping I’d ask but didn’t? 

SB- How many Guinness do you drink in an average day 😊

 JMR- Thank you, Stephen, for dropping by and sharing your book. And how many pints do you drink a day?

 Readers, I have included a link below for you to check it out. 



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