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Sylvie Cathrall writes stories of hope and healing with healthy doses of wonder and whimsy. She holds a graduate degree in odd Victorian art and has handled more than a few nineteenth-century letters (with great care). Sylvie married her former pen pal and lives in the mountains, where she dresses impractically and dreams of the sea. 

Sylvie’s debut novel, A LETTER TO THE LUMINOUS DEEP (Book 1 of The Sunken Archive), will be published by Orbit UK and US in April 2024. She is represented by Natasha Mihell at The Rights Factory.  

An illustrated portrait of author Sylvie Cathrall, surrounded by a frame of flowers and shells.

official bio

portrait by Inês Dinis 

a less official biographical note

There are many other interests I could share to give you a better sense of my non-writerly personality. For example, I love Kinuko Y. Craft book covers, fairy lore, the fantasy-map-drawing game Cartographers, cross-stitch, theme park history and design, and assorted harp playlists.

But I ought to mention something less ridiculously whimsical—my OCD. A Letter to the Luminous Deep features a protagonist living with severe obsessive-compulsive disorder (well, its fantasy equivalent, anyway), and I drew from my own experiences when writing her part of the story. In a way, though, the particular way in which my brain functions shapes every tale I tell. 

While there are many aspects of my mental health that I’d rather not discuss in public, I am especially passionate about OCD awareness and advocacy. I was so misled by the pop culture stereotypes about obsessive-compulsive disorder that it took years for me to be diagnosed correctly. If you would like to learn more, I suggest checking out this list of

common myths from the International OCD Foundation

A pastel image of four different vintage-style coral illustrations.
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