Author's Notes on Troll Fell
Years ago I had an idea for a book set in Viking times, about a boy and his family. I wrote 20 pages and then got completely stuck! But I liked the characters and the setting, so I kept it. When I moved back to England I found it again, took a look, and saw what was wrong. I’d had Thor and Odin in the story – the old Viking gods – and they didn’t work. After all, if all-powerful gods can help the characters out any time, what’s left for the hero to do? I decided to get rid of the gods and have trolls and other magical creatures instead.
For a long time I couldn’t think of a title for the book, and then one day it came to me. Everything in the book happens on or around a sinister mountain named ‘Troll Fell’, with a secret kingdom of trolls buried beneath it. I could call the book ‘Troll Fell’ after the mountain!
My favourite character in the book is probably the Nis – an unpredictable and touchy but good-hearted little house spirit. I didn’t ‘invent’ the Nis – there are lots of Norwegian folktales about such little creatures. Read some of them on the Troll Fell 'Folklore' page!