Susan Hill was born in Scarborough and educated at grammar schools there and in Coventry and took her English degree at King`s College, London.
Her best known books, apart from The Woman in Black, are the novels I’m the King of the Castle, Strange Meeting and In the Springtime of the Year. Her books have won the Whitbread fiction Award, the Somerset Maugham Award and the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and been shortlisted for The Booker Prize.
She has also written non-fiction and children`s books and been a regular reviewer of books for numerous national newspapers and journals and broadcast regularly.
Her most recent books are a trilogy of crime novels featuring Detective Chief Inspector Simon Serrailler, of which the first two, The Various Haunted of Men and The Pure in Heart have been published and the third, The Risk of Darkness will appear in 2006. The series has been bought for television adaptation.
Susan Hill lives in a farmhouse in rural Gloucestershire from where she runs her own small publishing company, Long Barn Books.
She is married to the Shakespeare Scholar Professor Stanley Wells and has two adult daughters.
Of her fiction, Susan Hill writes
"I was born on the North East coast of Yorkshire, in the beautiful town of Scarborough, in a snow-bound February during the Second World War. There were a good many old ladies living there in those days but there never seemed to be any children near to us, so that I spent a lot of my time on my own. But quite contentedly so. I had imaginary friends and I made up stories about them. As soon as I could, I wrote them down. So there was never a time in my life when I was not a writer. And so it has gone on. At school, between work for O and A levels, I wrote two novels, which were published when I was at university reading English. They were very bad novels, my apprentice work, and they are out of print – but they were the best I could do at the time. It took me some years to find my real voice, and meanwhile, I lived from hand to mouth as a freelance book reviewer, and always, I read, not just the new books, but the things I had grown up with – Dickens, Hardy, the Brontës, everything with atmosphere and a sense of place”.
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