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Into the Woods with Elizabeth Nettleton

We are thrilled Elizabeth's short tale "Dig" is one of the featured stories in "It Calls From The Forest: Volume 1"

Elizabeth Nettleton grew up on the Sunshine Coast, Australia, then moved to Brisbane to study Law at the Queensland University of Technology. She enjoys writing dark fiction and horror, and her short stories and drabbles have been included in The Sirens Call eZine, Trembling with Fear, and the "Forgotten Ones" and "It Calls from the Forest" anthologies by Eerie River Publishing. She currently lives in Oxfordshire, England, with her husband and three children.

Have you always written, or was there a catalyst that prompted you to begin this journey?

I’ve loved writing since I was a child. I used to write all sorts of things, from short stories and novels to poems and scripts. I remember, when I was about nine, I wrote this story about a girl and a ghost horse. My older brother wrote me a really nice note saying that he liked it. I think I still have it!

I stopped writing for a while when I finished school, though. I think it was a combination of being busy with university and work, and not being very confident in my abilities. Then, a few years ago, I saw an advertisement for a writing competition. I remembered how much I used to love writing, and thought it looked fun. I entered, and while I didn’t win, I got some great feedback on my story. I haven’t been able to stop writing since!

What is your favourite genre to read?

I have a lot of favourites, so that’s a tough one! I really love fantasy, horror, dark fiction, historical fiction, crime and thrillers. I’m a bit of a scaredy-cat, so I didn’t think I would enjoy horror until I was in my early-twenties and my sister gave me Stephen King’s, “It.” After that, I was hooked.

Do you remember the first piece of writing shared publicly? What were people’s reactions, but more importantly how did you react getting it out there?

The first piece of writing that I shared publicly was for the competition I mentioned, which involved workshopping your story with other contestants and then having the final version published on the contest’s website. It was quite daunting to put it out there after not writing for so many years, but people gave me really nice feedback on it.

I still didn’t feel very confident about my work, though, so I didn’t share anything with most of my family and friends until later. I submitted a dark fiction piece about a boy experiencing abuse to The Sirens Call eZine, and they accepted it! I was absolutely thrilled. When it came out, I decided to bite the bullet and post it on my social media. It was really nerve-wracking, but everyone was so positive and encouraging.

What is your workspace like? What kind of atmosphere do you need to write?

My workspace is meant to be a desk, but lately it’s become my laptop on my knees while I sit on the couch! I don’t really need any particular atmosphere to write. I’ll use any time the kids are quiet!

Without giving too much away, tell us about the short story you have featured in “It calls to the Forest”. What inspired you?

“Dig” is a story about a man who begins to struggle with his past and present during a hunting trip with his son. It was inspired by my own fears, I think – that fear of all the dark things that are bigger than us; the things we can’t see, and even worse, the things we’ve experienced but can’t quite remember.

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Twitter: @ElizabethNett18

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