Steve Emmett is a British author, occasional book and newspaper reviewer, humanist and a member of the Society of Authors. Born in Harrogate, a genteel Yorkshire spa town, Steve’s home town is actually Knaresborough, once a fiercely independent Urban District Council which was led for many years by Steve’s grandfather William Emmett. Knaresborough is now part of the Harrogate District and retains a small Town Council with little power. In the 1980s Steve served on both councils before breaking loose and heading back to big city life. Knaresborough is famous as the home of Mother Shipton, a cave-dwelling hag who foretold the future. Was she a witch as some say? Of course not, but as a child Steve often visited her cave and petrifying well. He thinks this may have something to do with his interest in the dark and mysterious.
After attending King James’s (Grammar) School in the town Steve went to the York College of Arts and Technology were he took a diploma in construction and surveying, then to the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London where his eyes were opened.
Steve’s Yorkshire father had no time for the artistic talents being developed at the AA and all but dragged him back to Knaresborough to provide slave labour for the ‘family building firm’. After building a few highly compromised houses Steve returned to London in 1987. For over twenty years he ran his own real estate agency specializing in Italian country homes and, for almost ten years, lived by Lake Trasimeno in Umbria, the setting for his horror thriller, Diavolino.
Born at the end of the 1950s, Steve grew up on Dennis Wheatley novels and Hammer Horror films, and on many occasions started to put pen to paper. Completely dissatisfied and unfulfilled with his career, Steve decided in 2008 that he wanted to write and began Diavolino. Right now he is completing some dark, psychological novels and some short stories. Steve’s work is influenced by the writing of John Ajvide Lindqvist, Stephen King, M R James, Anne Rice, Yasmina Khasra and Joanne Harris (and one or two others), but he has his own distinctive style. Steve is an avid reader of horror and psychological suspense, and works as an occasional reviewer for the New York Journal of Books. He currently lives in Malton with his long-term partner, and misses his grown-up son more than is good for him.
Steve is a committed humanist and a member of the British Humanist Association. He worked for a couple of years as the BHA’s Ceremonies Training Coordinator, and is himself a humanist naming, wedding, and funeral celebrant. He is also a member of Galha (the GLBTQ section of the BHA) and served two terms on its committee.
Some may say that being a humanist doesn’t sit well with an interest in the supernatural but Steve disagrees entirely. “Just because tales of demons, devils and gods interest me for entertainment doesn’t mean I have to believe in them,” he says. “They are fictional characters just like any other and for me, showing what harm belief in the supernatural can do is perfectly in line with my humanist approach to life. I don’t believe in the reality of my characters any more than the Reverend Wilbert Awdry believed in talking trains.”