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I started work on Bird of Chaos after reading Osborne’s Sihanouk: Prince of Light, Prince of Darkness, a biography of the King of Cambodia during the takeover by the Khmer Rouge. I was fascinated by Cambodia’s bloody history and used this as inspiration for the political intrigue in my book. Like Cambodia, Tibuta is ripped apart by civil war while its neighbours vie for power.

A Tale of Two Cities was similar in that it ignited my desire to write about revolution.

The world of Tibuta is inspired by my travels through the Greek Islands and is loosely based on Ancient Greek mythology. The ethos of Tibuta was crafted around the ancient philosophical concepts of Sophrosyne, or balance, and Sobrietas, or temperance. I read Thomas R. Martin’s Ancient Greece: From Prehistoric to Hellenistic Times as research.

I admire Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake, a post-apocalyptic speculative fiction, for its brilliant portrayal of a dysfunctional relationship between mother and son. I was also interested in the relationship between Hamlet and his mother. However, as my goal has always been to write about women, I wanted to explore the relationship between mother and daughter, and how it can be poisoned by jealousy. Jung called this jealousy the Electra complex: a girl’s tendency to compete with her mother for her father’s affection.