Monsters, magic and more in fantasy adventure by Henlow author Ellie - who once represented Britain in athletics

PUBLISHED: 14:02 14 May 2017

Henlow author EA Quinn. Picture: Courtesy of EA Quinn

Henlow author EA Quinn. Picture: Courtesy of EA Quinn

Archant

An author from Henlow who once competed in athletics for Britain has published a children's fantasy adventure book.

Ellie Quinn’s new book The Scavyngers, aimed at children aged nine to 11, takes readers on a wild ride packed with monsters, magic and more.

Its plot follows a boy called Fidelis as he works to defeat the Scavyngers, evil creatures who live in the woods and subsist on the blood of kidnapped children.

Ellie, who uses the pen name EA Quinn, cites Roald Dahl, Lemony Snicket and MR James among her influences for the novel.

She said: “I wrote this book to satisfy the child in me. It is unlike anything that you have read.”

The fast-paced book takes the notion of good versus evil as its overriding theme, inspired by Ellie’s interest in detectives and ghost stories – and Ellie said there was also ‘a comedic thread, with many light-hearted moments’.

Ellie has lived in Bedfordshire for 21 years, after first moving to Sandy in 1996.

She competed for Bedford Athletic Club for some years and, having had a kidney transplant from her mother in 1986, represented Britain in the World Transplant Games – leading to her being named Bedford Sports Personality of the Year in 2001.

Ellie said: “I was both flattered and humbled to learn that I had won the award – an award previously won by Paula Radcliffe – which was presented by Olympic badminton silver medalist Gail Emms.”

Ellie subsequently received a second kidney transplant in 2006, a year after she moved to Henlow. She no longer competes in athletics due to injury, but still regularly attends the Saxon Leisure Centre gym in Biggleswade.

In a column for lifestyle website Female First, Ellie gave her five top tips for writing fantasy for young readers – and listed as one of her points ‘keep it real’.

She said: “Although your subject is fantasy, it has to be believable. Don’t be lured into the ‘it’s magic so anything can happen’ trap. Make the reader believe that this could actually happen within the realms of the world that you have created.”

Her other points were to let creativity flow, keep the story moving, make all characters ‘pay their rent’, and to ‘make every sentence a Eureka moment’.

The Scavyngers is published by Matador, part of Troubador Publishing, and costs £7.99 from troubador.co.uk or amazon.co.uk.

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