Laura Tisdall grew up between Wiltshire and Washington DC. She now teaches modern British history at Newcastle University and lives in Northumberland with her springer spaniel puppy. All of her fiction intersects with the weird, strange and uncanny, and she is especially interested in drawing on folktale and horror tropes.
Laura has been writing seriously since she was in her late teens. She is working on her first novel (working title: The Forest That Eats Bone), which focuses on a historian who travels back to the fourteenth-century fenland, but becomes uneasily aware that this alternative medieval timeline is mirroring the sinister imaginary game that she and her sister created as children. Laura is represented for her fiction-writing by Kerry Glencorse at Susanna Lea Associates.
Q: What is the first book you remember reading or having read to you as a child?
A: A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson and The House at Pooh Corner by AA Milne.
Q: Do you have a lucky writing talisman? If so, what is it?
A: I have a newly installed woolly flying pig keyring that hangs above my desk.
Q: Is there a book that you keep going back to, and if so, how many times have you read it?
A: So many! Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, for its fantastic use of psychic distance. Evie Wyld’s All The Birds, Singing, for its impossibly clever backwards structure. Tana French’s Dublin Murder Squad novels, especially The Likeness, Broken Harbour and The Secret Place. Finally, Robin McKinley’s Sunshine, the book of my heart.
Q: What is the least interesting part of writing for you?
A: Writing first drafts.
Q: Who is your personal inspiration?
A: My grandma Shirley (1936-2007).