Saturday, 1 October 2011

Self Publishing Spotlight: Kit-in-the-Candlestick by Nixie Turner

Welcome to my Self Publishing Spotlight!

This month I'm very pleased to say my spotlight has landed on Yorkshire based author Nixie Turner and her enchanting book Kit-in-the-Candlestick.

When Mopsa discovers the secret that lead to the death of her father, she runs away and finds herself late at night in the doorway of a mysterious shop on one of York’s ancient streets. She tries the door handle and tumbles inside, only to find herself banished to the strange and inhospitable land of Lethe.

Pursued by hidden enemies, and in a desperate race against time, she attempts to discover the whereabouts of a missing girl and unlock the magic within her amethyst necklace. On her journey, she meets Tom, a boy as lost as she is, and together they try and find their way home.

Kit-in-the-Candlestick is an enchanting tale wonderfully told and you can read my full review of the book here.

For now, Nixie has very kindly written me a magical guest post all about the inspiration behind the story and a look at what we can expect from her in the future.


It was a lovely old green door that inspired me to write Kit-in-the-Candlestick. I saw it when on holiday in the Peak District and thought it must be a ‘portal into faerie’. It was a gothic arch and led into a walled garden that made me think of Narnia and The Secret Garden and all those other wonderful stories where you could escape and explore new worlds and meet fantastic and fantastical creatures.

I love stories, superstitions and folklore. Hallowe’en was always a magical time for me when I was a child. It is a night where anything could happen; where our world grows close to that otherworld, a world of witches and werewolves and spells. Autumn is my favourite season and Hallowe’en has a great part to play in that. The dark nights and smell of wood smoke in the air, and that sense of indescribable anticipation – would this year be the year where all my beliefs became concrete, would I actually meet with a creature of the night?

I always use the spelling of Hallowe’en with the apostrophe in it. I think it looks more magical, more other don’t you?

However, I am digressing, as I am here to talk about Kit. For me, it was a joy to write. I am terrible for going off at tangents. I am a story magpie, picking up shiny bits of tales as I go along and trying to incorporate them into whatever I happen to be writing (did you see that whole paragraph and a half on Hallowe’en that had no relevance to my writing this for you now, but it caught my fancy and I simply had to write it?)

Kit includes lots of Yorkshire folklore, some has been forgotten and some live on in more remote parts of the region. Much of it was inspired by my eccentric older female relatives – imagine mad old ladies in jumble sale clothes roaming the fields in search of three legged goats and ancient sheep, with a rag-tag collection of cats in their wake. Yes, that’s them, and yes, I do worry that one day, that will be me.

The main character in Kit is Mopsa, a young girl who finds herself lost in another world, similar to ours but with so many contradictions. It is about the people she meets there and her struggle to find her way home. I often get asked about the name, Mopsa. It comes from a very minor character in Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale, which is a play about a mother and daughter who are cruelly separated, but eventually find each other again.

My next book is currently titled The Dragon Girl, but I may be changing that as my nephews feel that an auntie who writes books is quite cool, but an auntie who writes books and calls them girly names like The Dragon Girl, is most certainly not.


So there you have it! A huge thanks to Nixie for participating in the Self Publishing Spotlight, her book Kit-in-the-Candlestick is available now and I highly recommend it to escape to a magical new world. Kit is available from:


For more info on Nixie and her books, you can find her on her:

Website      Twitter      Facebook

To find out more about the Self Publishing Spotlight feature or to submit a book, click here. I'm especially interested to hear from authors planning to publish in the new year.

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