We'd been on holiday in May and I'd been snapping views to send to friends and family as 'ecards' - emails with a photo attached. A coach tour brought us to the Somerset village of Dunster, where I photographed a grotesque head decorating an archway at Dunster Priory.
My clever friend Jonathan Hill emailed back to say 'Book Cover'! As he designs my covers, I gave this a lot of thought. I wanted to base the story around the image, and what that might convey to a medieval mind. I grabbed the word demonic and ran with it. It was obviously only going to be a short story as I was basing it around one event.
I wanted to explore the differences between superstition and science as ways of looking at the world. I have my characters trying to explain what was happening to a young girl living an ascetic life, at the age when she might be most susceptible to suggestion and/or hysteria. The reader, of course, has modern science to interpret things - but it isn't always able to do so. We still can't explain some supernatural events to everybody's satisfaction. I leave it to the reader. What happened?