Friday, November 21, 2014

Interview with Author Gair McDonald



Today I'd like to introduce you to a fresh new voice in the horror genre. Gair McDonald, a screenwriter who lives in Scotland, has written a wonderful haunted house short story called Blackwood Manor, now available as an ebook. I had the pleasure of editing Gair’s short story and designing the cover. We’ve also had some great conversations about soccer, horror movies, and the art of writing hair-raising tales of terror. Gair was nice enough to stop by my blog for a visit and chat about what inspired him to write a ghost story.



Synopsis: Welcome to Blackwood Manor, a three-story Scottish house steeped in ancient history and myth. For many years the manor has remained abandoned and left to rot, until now. The Marshall Family has arrived. Hank and Emily are hoping that moving out to the country will give them a fresh start with their daughter Amy. But evil lurks in the most unlikely of places, waiting for new victims to cross its threshold.

There are plenty of chilling moments in Blackwood Manor and some unexpected twists and turns. The fact that it’s located in Scotland made it an enjoyable read for me. I especially loved the relationship between Hank Marshall and his young daughter, Amy, and the tension between Amy and her mother. Gair, tell readers about where your idea for this ghost story originated from.


What I like about the whole haunted house theme is that you can do what you like with it, turn it into what you want. The concept for Blackwood Manor actually came from a short script which for years I thought about turning into a short story.


Interestingly, there are significant differences; the script simply had the main character going to the manor where two women reside. Suffice it to say, it's evident that when the character is there things “aren't right.” In the short story we have a family living in the manor hoping for a fresh start. There may be differences from the script and short story, however, a couple of themes stay the same: the manor is clearly steeped in myth and history. And the differences in the short story . . . well, you will have to read for yourself!

What compels you to write horror?


Like many others, writing for me is a form of escapism. Horror is a great seller for writing. I think the beauty of horror is that I don't think people ever get tired or fed up of horror one way. It does sell. Horror fans will always have their favourite character or theme.


When it comes to writing, whether it be a short story or screenplay, I have enjoyed writing horror. Each story that I have done is set in the same “world.” There are nods to my other stories; for instance, my current “creature feature” screenplay references Blackwood Manor.

I also write horror as a fun means of escapism and agree that the genre, whether it be books or movies, tends to stay popular. Gair, thanks so much for visiting and I look forward to reading more stories from the fictional world you’ve created.

For those interested in reading Blackwood Manor it’s available for Kindle, Nook, Kobo and more.



Gair McDonald is based in Aberdeenshire, Scotland and has been passionate about writing for over ten years. To date, he has written short stories, several screenplays, and two television pilots. In his spare time, he enjoys going to the cinema, gym, walking, and spending time with his children.


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