Shropshire Star

Author signs two-deal publishing deal

A young mother-of-one has penned her first young adult thriller and signed a two-book deal with a publishing company in London.

Tess James-Mackey with her book Someone is Watching You

Tess James-Mackey, aged 32, from the Rea Brook area of Shrewsbury, took inspiration from her book, entitled Someone is Watching You, after visiting a soft play centre which was based at Shrewsbury Prison after it closed.

Educated at Walford College and North Shropshire College in equine studies, Tess later took a job as a risk consultant for an insurance company.

However, it was while on maternity leave in 2016 that Tess decided that she would write a book.

She has now signed the deal with the Hachette Children's Group.

She said: "Writing was always something I enjoyed doing.

"I have now been signed for a two book deal and have another novel coming out in January next year.

"My first book is about a 15-year-old teenager who gets dragged along by her mother to a soft play centre with her siblings.

"She is dared to explore an abandoned prison by friends who send messages via her telephone.

"The girl and her sister, who is seven-years-old, decide to explore the prison but soon realise that they are not alone,

"The book is scary but the good guys win in the end.

"I based it on a soft play centre which I visited which was based in the old exercise room of the former Shrewsbury Prison which was closed in 2013.

"The prison is now a tourist attraction and people can enjoy tours of the building.

"I think that I will continue to base my books locally and the next one is set in the Black Mountains, near the Brecon Beacons and is due to be published in January next year."

Her debut novel, Someone is Watching You is available for £7.99 through all good bookshops.

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