Go into the wilderness on a clear night and look up. Look long. Then you will have seen something of Faêrie.. . .


... into Cecilia's inspirations

- Which author has had the greatest literary influence on Cecilia's work?

She writes: 'JRR Tolkien's 'The Lord of the Rings,' which I first read at the age of nine, had a huge impact on my life. To this day it remains my favourite story of all time and is one of the reasons I am drawn to writing fantasy.'

- Which other authors have inspired Cecilia's work?

Tanith Lee, Nicholas Stuart Gray, George MacDonald, William Shakespeare, Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Eleanor Farjeon, C.S. Lewis, Arthur C. Clarke, E. Nesbit, Andre Norton, Arthur C Clarke,Ann McCaffrey, Isaac Asimov, Charles Dickens, Eleanor Farjeon, William Shakespeare, George Eliot, Terry Pratchett, George MacDonald, Jane Austen, Ray Bradbury, Susannah Clark, Thomas Hardy, Simon Winchester, Dianna Wynne-Jones, Douglas Adams, Alan Garner, CS Lewis, Andrew Lang, William Allingham, Hilda Lewis, Charles Kingsley, Emily Brontë, Juliet Marillier, William Morris, Ursula LeGuin, Jackie French and more.

- Which artists have inspired Cecilia's work?
Brian Froud, Alan Lee, John Howe, Kinuko Y. Craft, Paul Gregory, John Waterhouse, Edward Byrne-Jones and all the other Pre-Raphaelites, Julek Heller, Cicely Mary Barker, Paul Gregory, Maxfield Parrish, Arthur Rackham, Thomas Canty, Michael Whelan, Linda Bergkvist, Krystal Camprubi, Alphonse Mucha, Anke Katrin Eissman,
Cicely Mary Barker, Dorothy P. Lathrop, Dalmazio Frau, Ida Rentoul Outhwaite and others.

- 'Cecilia, I have just purchased The Ill-Made Mute and am looking forward to reading it. When I opened the book, the quote at the top of the first chapter stopped me dead. I was struck by the similarity of your song to the lines from the Pink Floyd song, "Learning to Fly" - "Can't keep my eyes from the circling skies/Tongue-tied and twisted, an earth-bound misfit, I." I was wondering if you were inspired by the song.' From Amy.

Cecilia writes: 'You are absolutely right, Amy. I love the lines from that Pink Floyd song and I was indeed inspired by them. In fact, I find the lyrics of many popular songs inspiring. In the Bitterbynde trilogy, readers inclined to be detectives will find poetry referring to songs by Led Zeppelin, Cream, Jimi Hendrix and several other classic artists.'

- Are you inspired by Celtic mythology?
Reply: 'I do use Scottish and Irish folklore in my work, however a large portion of my source material is not Celtic but British. It's a source that seems to have been somewhat swamped by the popularity of Scandinavian and Celtic folklore in the past few decades. English counties such as Somerset and Cornmwall, and places like the Isle of Man, have their own unique traditions and curious creatures which fascinate me, and which I have explored to the best of my ability.'

- Favourite movies and shows in no particular order?

The Last of the Mohicans
Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon
Howl's Moving Castle
The House of Flying Daggers
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
The first Star Wars trilogy
The Storyteller
The Back to the Future trilogy
The Final Fantasy series
Cirque du Soleil
Legend (1985)
Blanche (1971)
Peter Pan
Spirited Away
Sorority Boys
Groundhog Day
The Adventures of Robin Hood (Errol Flynn, 1938)
The Blues Brothers

- Favourite TV shows?
Doctor Who
Red Dwarf
Buffy The Vampire Slayer
Time Team
The Nanny
Black Books

- Favourite musicians?
Loreena McKennitt
T Jones and R Edelman
The Bothy Band
Steeleye Span
Fairport Convention
The Dandy Warhols
The Chieftains
Led Zeppelin
Jethro Tull
Battlefield Band
Franz Ferdinand

- Poets?
John Keats
Christina Rossetti
William Shakespeare
Samual Taylor Coleridge
Ethna Carbery
Alfred Lord Tennyson
Percy Bysse Shelley
JRR Tolkien
William Wordsworth
Walter de la Mare
Lord Byron

- Cecilia, do you have any other sources of inspiration?
Seasons, weather and places. In particular autumn, spring, thunderstorms, frost, rain, the UK, Europe and Eire.