Wednesday 8 December 2010

The Twelve Deaths of Christmas Blog Tour

Courtesy of

On the first day of Christmas,
My true love sent to me
A corpse hanging from a pear tree.

On the second day of Christmas,
My true love sent to me
Two werewolves howling
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree.

On the third day of Christmas,
My true love sent to me
Three zombies snarling
Two Werewolves howling
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree.

Welcome to the third stop on The Twelve Deaths of Christmas Blog Tour, courtesy of The Chainsaw Gang which is made up of Alex Bell, Alexander Gordon Smith, Alex Milway, David Gatward, Sam Enthoven, Sarwat Chadda, Steve Feasey, Jon Mayhew, Stephen Deas, William Hussey and Sarah Silverwood. They are a group of UK horror authors who write about vampires, werewolves, zombies, dragons and a whole host of other things that make you want to hide beneath the bed covers!

As part of the blog tour, I had the opportunity to ask them all a question and this is the one that got the most answers:

Where's the spookiest place you've ever visited?

Jon Mayhew
(Author of "Mortlock")

Bodmin Jail last year, it’s a Victorian Jail that has largely been converted to a hotel but much of the old prison still moulders beneath it. It’s ace, the place has a real atmosphere and its bloomin freezing down there in the cells.

Sarwat Chadda
(Author of "The Devil's Kiss" and Dark Goddess")

The maharajah’s palace in Varanasi. It was rundown, dusty, all the decorations were covered in cobwebs and the catacombs were filled with bats. I don’t know how long it had been left abandoned but I remember walking through the main hall and backing on the mirrors had turned black so everyone’s reflection had a ghostly transparency. The only thing missing was Indiana Jones.

Steven Feasey
(Author of "Changeling" AKA "Wereling")

When I was in Portugal a few years ago I visited an ossuary made entirely of the bones of the dead. There were thousands of yellow skulls staring down at you from the walls, and it was all rather eerie.

David Gatward

(Author of "The Dead")

Hermitage Castle. An imposing, dark and monstrous place just begging to suck you in to its hidden history of unspeakable terrors…

Stephen Deas

(Author of "The Thief Taker's Apprentice")

The Stone Forest in China. We managed to get in at night under a full moon and had the place to ourselves; I've never had such a strong sense of being in a different world. Not spooky as in creepy or scary, more like having crossed the boundary between the real world and the realm of the fey folk.

I'll second Jon on Bodmin Jail, and the old jail in Lincoln Castle is worth a look too.

Sam Enthoven

(Author of "Crawlers" AKA the book with the most disgusting cover ever)

When I was small my parents used to take me to see a lot of castles. A dungeon in one left a particularly strong impression on me. It was a large, lightless underground room with a black iron cage in the centre, hanging suspended above the ground by chains. The cage wasn't big enough to stand up in. Even though I was very young I had no difficulty at all imagining what it might be like to be imprisoned in that cage for any length of time, and I didn't like the idea one bit. A formative horror experience!

Alex Bell

(Author of "Lex Trent Versus The Gods")

This old hacienda in Mexico. It was the creepiest building ever, and the fact that there was a model of a weird monk holding a puppet monk in a glass case in the living room didn’t help. I didn’t sleep a wink all night. Plus the bed had insect exoskeletons on it.

Sarah Silverwood
(Author of "The Double Edged Sword")

I was a Letting Agent for a while, and once I went to show this old victorian terrace house to a group of students. I let myself in first (the house was empty) and just had a look around to make sure it was presentable. The house was perfectly fine until I went into the spare bedroom upstairs, and then I was filled with an awful sense of fear and dread as if something really really bad had happened in there, and the badness was somehow still there. I ran out of the house and waited for the girls outside. When I showed them round, I had the same awful feeling, but they didn't seem to notice it! That was about 14 years ago now, but I still get shivers when I think about that room.

Alexander Gordon Smith
(Author of "The Furness" series)

Some of my book signings have been pretty ghostly places…

When I was researching Furnace my brother, Jamie, locked me inside an underground medieval dungeon in Norwich. It was pitch black in there and I was convinced that there were ghosts in the cell with me – to the point where I swore I could hear them whispering in my ear and pawing me with cold fingers. Luckily he unlocked the door after a few (well, fifteen!) minutes and I managed to escape. Once I’d calmed down I realised how useful the experience would be when it came to writing about the first night that Alex – my main character – gets locked away inside Furnace Penitentiary. Spooky!

Thank you to all the authors that answered my question and for Sarwat for being chief organiser of the blog tour. NEXT STOP is at Wondrous Reads. Be sure to check it out tomorrow!

For more information on the Chainsaw Gang and about The Twelve Deaths of Christmas Blog Tour click here.


  1. I love the revised version of 12 Days of Christmas!

  2. Some fantastically spooky locations. I would like to go and see a building made entirely of bones.

  3. I'm loving this tour and what great creepy places. x

  4. I find dungeons spooky too...especially if they still have the original shackles on the wall and everything. I get the feeling that someone is in there with's creepy but I love the feeling at the same time!