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Margaret Bingley: writing 'Gateway to Hell'

originally published in 1991

to be republished in 2009

'I'm often asked to name my favourite horror novel, or my favourite erotic novel and, probably in common with most authors, I find this a difficult question to answer. However, I have always felt that Gateway to Hell was one of my strongest horror books, and it was also a very interesting book to write.

In most of my horror novels, the setting is in a small town or village in England, and the main characters are the kind of people that everyone who lives in England knows and can relate to. In the case of Gateway to Hell, I had to do a great deal of research into the early Egyptian gods and their stories, and I became fascinated by what I read. I discovered enough material for several novels, and only wish that I'd been able to use more of it at a later date. As part of the story is set in modern Egypt, that too made the book different from its predecessors.

I also did considerable research into how identical twins behave, and the problems that can sometimes arise due to the fact that they are so close that they seem at times to be one person. This closeness makes relationships with adults and other children almost superfluous. What, I wondered, would happen if this closeness were taken a step further? The result can be found in the book, where the games of 'which one of us is which?' that many identical twins like to play at times take on a far more sinister meaning. Or do they? Are the twins normal twins, playing on their aunt's natural insecurities, or is there something more behind it?

Naturally I don't intend to give the answer away here, but I hope that people who buy the book enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it, and I'm delighted that it will now be available for the first time in paperback, and to a whole new readership.'

Margaret Bingley,
June, 2008


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