Sunday 21 June 2015

Where Inspiration Can Lead

Last week, saw the release of my debut novel, The Adventures of Katie Button. It has been a busy week some of which included interviews. And one question kept cropping up; what was my inspiration for the novel? It all started with a piece of flash fiction about a highwayman which I wrote for Five Sentence Fiction. It was my very first short story and I had no idea how important those five sentence would be back then in March 2012. The prompt was ‘wicked’. And it turned out by the comments my piece received, a highwayman is the ultimate in wicked, with a mischievous glint in his eye. I really wanted to expand on that idea which I finally did in my modern day chick-lit (If you want to find out how the highwayman fits in, well you know what to do). :-)

But where did the inspiration come from to write the five sentences in the first place? It came from the narrative poem, The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes. I absolutely love this poem. Ghostly description takes the reader on a dark, spine tingling journey, where not a word is wasted as it chillingly teases you to the very end . . . which is what also makes a good flash fiction piece work.

I’m lucky enough to be working with this poem at the moment as it is one of the narrative poems studied in Year5. And it’s that time of year where we are immersing ourselves into The Highwayman as another generation are introduced to his tale. The enthusiasm in which they discuss, act out and predict is tangible and I can't wait to read their own narrative poems. Maybe The Highwayman will be a form of inspiration to a budding writer in the near future like it was with me.

Now, I have my own novel out, which seems to be doing well on Amazon and it’s all thanks to Alfred Noyes and The Highwayman. The Poetry Foundation to read The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes

Lillie Mcferrin's Five Sentence Fiction

My Highwayman five sentence fiction from the prompt 'Wicked'. 

The Amazon UK link to my novel, The Adventures of Katie Button

A few of the quotes people are saying about Katie Button


  1. I love how poetry inspires us, it was Walter De La Mare's The Listeners for me...I adore it and its inspiring, maybe I need to write a new piece of prose based on it, my last piece was at school when I was fourteen!

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