Interview with Robert Brighton, Author of A Murder in Ashwood

26 Sep 2023

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write A Murder in Ashwood?

I wanted to show how tough and resilient people can be in the face of tremendous loss . . . and how as humans we are neither all good nor all evil, but complex mixtures of both.

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of A Murder in Ashwood, what would they be?

Sarah Payne: ‘Smoke Gets in Your Eyes’; Alicia Miller: ‘Barracuda’

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

History of technology. I don’t read fiction after about 1930, so no — it’s very different.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

A Guide to the Labyrinth (Morrison); The Tide at Sunrise (Warner); Psychopathia Sexualis (Krafft-Ebing)

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

A Trip to Maine.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

My two large British Shorthair cats, James and Penelope, follow me into my writing room and flop down nearby, watching me warily as I begin to write. When they fall asleep, I know I’ve hit my stride.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

‘O great creator of being, grant us one more hour to perform our art and perfect our lives’ – Jim Morrison

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

That courage is not the lack of fear, that every day offers a new beginning, and that we may find friendship and love in the most unlikely places.


Robert Brighton is the author of the new book A Murder in Ashwood: Scandals and Secrets in the Gilded Age

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Author Site

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