'This piece is taken from the novel "Heaven and Hell at the Paradise Motel"
and the exegesis that together forms my PhD thesis. The three main strands of this
thesis are Gothic, Noir and sense of place. The novel, ''Heaven and Hell at the Paradise
Motel", is preoccupied with the natural environment, its subtle seasonal changes and the
way the environment impacts on its human inhabitants and how they in turn affect it.
The novel is, in a very Gothic sense, haunted by dreams, apparitions and narratives -
specifically mini-narratives that reflect the nature of fairy tales, horror stories and urban
myths. It contains elements of melodrama, horror, romance. The story follows a deeply
dysfunctional family through a seasonal cycle: beginning in Spring and ending once
again in Spring. A key focus for both the creative and the theoretical work was the
everyday application of the Gothic and Noir - for example a house doesn't have to be a
castle to be haunted; people don't have to be monsters to be monstrous. The dark, the
strange, the sinister and the perverse lurk in the shadows of everyday reality, but also
how these elements intertwined within the landscape.' (Author's abstract)