I wanted all along to write about female friendship in the contect of falconry, possibly inspired by the displays put on by Jemima Parry-Jones at various agricultural shows around Derbyshire when I was growing up. When I started researching the subject, I found that Harris Hawks tend to hunt in unmated pairs, or groups, far more than any native British birds of prey, and so I kept them in place of the various other species I had considered.
Once I had my set-up, I needed an adventure, and that was where Portchester Castle came in.
It's local to me, which is always useful for reseach purposes, it's large and mostly intact, and it's very close to the sea (which I also wanted for some of my imagery). It also has a very pretty little church within its outer walls, with various maritime graves in the churchyeard.
The story begins in London, and while Portchester is a long way away as the hawk flies, the birds in my story aren't exactly ordinary hawks. In fact, throughout the story I tried to mix up the mundane and the fantastickal. Without giving too much away, this is a story about parallel worlds: our world, and the world of the hawks and the dragon (the dragon is a mixture of various different images and artists' representations, by the way). There are thos who can move between the worldss, those who only inhabit one or the other, and those who seek to break down the walls between the worlds. Which is where our heroines come in...
Over to you. What fun facts can you tell me about hawks, dragons, or castles? Do you have any questions for me about the story?
Link to complete story list
Link to the Kickstarter page for the book's launch