Tag Archives: christmas

Black Beacon Setting: Beachy Head & the South Downs

Black Beacon inspiration: Beachy Head

Here’s some photos of the South Downs including the stunning Beachy Head, where the hills crumble in a mass of pulverised chalk to the English Channel. A lonely red-and-white lighthouse prevents ships crashing into the cliffs. This spot features in my latest ghost story, Black Beacon, which is set on the sometimes radiant, often bleak, always beautiful landscape of the downs. Like several of the other elements in the story, it draws on my own personal experience.

Black Beacon inspiration: Seven Sisters

The character of Theo in Black Beacon is loosely based on my real German grandfather, Egon Korn, who arrived in England as a Prisoner of War. He met my grandma in Eastbourne and they were soon married. The story of his capture was extraordinary, and something I knew had to write in a story one day. I just never realised it was going to be one of my ghost stories! You can find out more about his experience here.

Black Beacon inspiration: South Downs

My grandfather, who I called Da, used to collect me from the Cavendish Hotel on the seafront in his cream VW Beetle. I was living in the hotel because my dad worked there, we were in the staff accommodation. Da used to drive me up to Beachy Head and we would go and look out on this fabulous panorama. Enjoy!

Black Beacon inspiration: South Downs National Landscape

Black Beacon Inspiration: Cuckmere, South Downs
Black Beacon inspiration: South Downs, looking to Eastbourne

Black Beacon – a reading

Time for a short reading from my latest book, BLACK BEACON, a chilling ghost story for Christmas!

Theo, short of money but determined he and his wife shall have a good Christmas, has decided to take a tree from the forest – but he’s got hopelessly lost. Then he comes across a figure in the darkness…

Here’s some of the wonderful things people have been saying about Black Beacon since its release:

***** I loved this book and read it in one sitting late at night with the aftermath of a storm whistling outside

***** What a great ghostly Christmas book

***** His best book yet 

***** A deeply haunting ghost story

***** This was such an original Christmas ghost story, I could not put it down. From the first pages I was gripped and wanting to know what happened to Nat and Theo.

You can check out Black Beacon now on Amazon:

Black Beacon – Inspiration

Black Beacon is one of my favourite, and one of my most personal, books so far.

Black Beacon Christmas ghost story opening page

This is why:

One, it takes place on the Sussex Downs, near Beachy Head, and in Eastbourne, where I was born. I love this area of the south coast for the wide sweep of the Downs (broad, grassy hills, with small pockets of woodland); for the white cliffs that plunge into the rough sea with its red-and-white striped lighthouse; and for the pastel blues, whites, greys and browns of its pebble beaches. And Eastbourne, which I still visit regularly because my mum lives there, is a beautiful town with a grand, white parade of hotels and a gold-domed pier on the seafront. I even lived in one of those hotels for a while, when I was little and my dad was working there.

Two, the main characters, Theo and Nat, are loosely inspired by my grandparents, who I loved so much. They met after the war, when my German grandfather was a Prisoner of War. The story of how he was captured is astonishing – almost unbelievable – and I’ve included it in the book.

Black Beacon Christmas Ghost story back cover

Three, it’s about Christmas, in the 1970s, and what’s not to love about that? The heyday of glam, Slade, Wizzard, Brotherhood of Man… OK, before you go mentioning the winter of discontent I plead innocence. I was a small boy reading Tintin and playing with my dog. I adored Christmases then, always with my grandparents, they were one of the most exciting times of my life.

And lastly I love Black Beacon because I’m a horror fan and it’s frightening. At times, really frightening. The ghost is… pure evil.

So I invite you to read it and find out why – if you have the stomach for a proper haunting this Christmas, that is…

Black Beacon: A Christmas Ghost Story, is available on Amazon now.

Black Beacon Christmas ghost story proof copy

Black Beacon: A Christmas Ghost Story – Out Now!

I’m SUPER excited to tell you my latest book, Black Beacon, a chilling Christmas ghost story set on the snow-swept South Downs, is out now!

Black Beacon Christmas Ghost Story out now!

Here’s what it’s about:

1976. The South Downs.

The Christmas it snowed.

The Christmas that evil returned…

Struggling with money, Theo and Nat are doing their best to make Christmas special. It’s been a hard time of year for them, ever since they lost their beloved daughter.

But this year, their troubles are just beginning. They are about to be visited by a shocking ghost from Christmas past, a spirit who will bring back not just the horror of the war that divided them but also a deep, hidden betrayal from their own private past…

Click here to get a copy of Black Beacon on Amazon, in paperback and Kindle editions – or read for free on Kindle Unlimited!

Wishing you a peaceful, happy Christmas!

The Christmas tree is up in the Griffin house and the boys are writing their lists for Santa! (Yes, it’s true, we’ve somehow managed to keep them believing in Father Christmas despite them becoming cynical about pretty much everything else in the world. I have no idea how, but I guess it’s something to do with believing what you want to believe…?)

So here’s a quick post to wish you as much happiness as possible throughout this festive season and to hope you leap any hurdles that might come your way.

Have a wonderful, peaceful time and I hope to see you next year,


Because Christmas isn’t Christmas without:

…a good ghost story – or two (click on images to go to Amazon book pages): 

The Ghosts of Alice series Christmas gift

…an exciting fantasy series for younger readers (11-14):

The Secret of the Tirthas series Christmas gift

…and a collection or two for the poetry lovers!

Poetry by Steve Griffin Christmas gift