Will and the Whisp


Will and the Whisp

by Ross MacKay

GENRE:   Fantasy

“The voice was coming from inside him … But it wasn’t his.”

The Whisp is a fugitive. Living in between worlds, she flees from veteran hunters and the General who wishes to corrupt her power. For Will Devine, nothing could be worse than someone else knowing his thoughts. When an unfortunate incident in the boy’s toilet mysteriously binds the two souls together, Will is horrified to find he is no longer the only voice inside his mind. With no way apart, the two of them must work together to find a solution.
But with one teacher dead and another student’s life on the line, can they survive long enough to escape from each other?


It was a hot sticky day when it happened. The sun seemed to beam at full strength, and it felt like everything was sweating. 

He was in history and Mr. Anthony grumbled, again, about the broken blinds and his inability to open the windows.

"Damn heat," he said, wiping his brow with a handkerchief. He placed both fists onto his desk and watched the class file in. He looked withered. Will had noticed that over the last few weeks that Mr. Anthony's fantastic story sessions had dwindled and now they spent most classes in complete silence answering questions from a textbook. 

"Where did we finish off last lesson?" he asked, barely lifting his head from his desk. 

"Page fifty," someone behind Will answered. 

"Then turn to page fifty-one."

The class let out a mutual groan, and Mr. Anthony looked up, his moustache twitched as his jaw clenched. "Page fifty-one." 

The class got to work. 

Mr. Anthony had aged in the short time Will had known him. Mr. Anthony now had sunken cheeks and an ashen face. Even his moustache seemed more faded. It was like all of the charisma he had from that first lesson had melted away. The history teacher looked old and vulnerable. 

There was an uneasy atmosphere in his room now like the air had a weight to it. 

About half-way through the class, the tension burst inside Will. Will's hand shot up as the first trickle of blood seeped out. He was already pinching his nose and tilting his head back to stop the blood from dripping onto his page.

 Mr. Anthony just sat at his desk, twiddling his paperweight between his fingers, looking into space. When Will coughed to get his attention, Mr. Anthony looked as if he had stirred from a deep sleep. And instead of speaking, he waved his hand for Will to leave. 

Will hurried down three flights of stairs. There were toilets on the second floor, but they never had any tissue paper or hand towels.  He thought the toilets on the ground floor in the old block would be fully stocked and he could deal with the nosebleed in peace. 

He instantly regretted his choice when the three boys turned to stare at him as he entered. One was playing with a lighter, one was perched upon a sink, and the other was on his tiptoes blowing cigarette smoke out of the thin rectangular windows at the very top of the toilet walls. 

Will held his breath. 

About the Author:

Ross MacKay lives in the village of Aberdour in Scotland with his wife and young son, Noah. 

Ross previously worked in theatre as the artistic director of Tortoise in a Nutshell. His productions toured all over the world. His shows have received numerous prestigious awards including a Scotsman Fringe First for New Writing and a Critic’s Pick from The New York Times. 

In 2020, Ross was the recipient of the William Soutar Award for Poetry and a Tom McGrath Trust Maverick Award.  He has been commissioned to write poetry for libraries in Fife, to open a festival in Perth and for two books published by Tippermuir. 

Ross’ first picture book, Daddy’s Bad Bed Day will be published in 2022 by Curly Tale Books. The book has been created to help young children with parents with poor mental health. Research for the book has been supported by numerous children’s charities in Scotland. 

When Ross isn’t writing or making shows, he spends his time in his inflatable kayak, trying to steer it as best he can. He loves gardening and is currently engaged in a fierce battle with a collection of snails who seem to love the rhubarb and potatoes just as much as Ross. 

Q&A With the Author

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

I loved the moments away from the desk that made me scramble for a pen and a piece of paper. I would be out working in the garden, on the train or even in the shower. Inspiration would strike. A little problem with plot, a character’s motivation or even a brand-new scene would pop into my head. I love that. When a new bit of the story reveals itself to you at a moment you least expect it. I love how my subconscious is working on the story even when I think I am focused on something else entirely.

Do you have any other books you are working on that you can tell us about?

At the moment, I am working on a Christmas show. I am writing the script for an adaptation of Treasure Island. It is a lot of fun to put your own spin on a classic tale.

But after that I plan to pick up an idea for a chapter book. It is all about a boy whose mum becomes a viral sensation after a stunt fails on a TV talent show. The only way he can think to stop her entering again is by secretly beating her in the auditions. It is part story, part magic book. I am also a magician so this book will be filled with some of the most impressive but easy to learn tricks I know too.

Can you tell us about what you have planned for the future?

After Will and The Whisp launches…probably a big sleep. BUT THEN – straight on to the chapter book. I have a few picture books on submission just now, so I hope they get picked up too. I have been writing a little bit for animation and children’s tv and I want to pursue that a little bit more.  I had one show picked up by a production company. They are currently looking for broadcast partners. I have fingers crossed that might become something real soon.

How long have you been writing?

I began writing seriously in 2019. But I spent a whole decade before then working in theatre. Which means I have been telling stories as a career for my whole adult life. I have always loved books and I have to pinch myself that I am getting to do this.  

Anything more you would like to say to your readers and fans?

I really hope Will and The Whisp sparks your imagination. I hope it entertains you and I hope it makes you smile.

Oh, and my publisher would want me to say – if you do enjoy it then please leave a review on amazon. It helps immensely. Thank you.

Website:  https://rossmackaystories.com/about

Twitter: http://twitter.com/rossc_mackay

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rossc_mackay

Facebook: http://facebook.com/rossmackaystories

Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0BBDB7V9S


Ross MacKay will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. ohhh this is one i can get so lost in!


  2. I enjoyed reading the Q&A and getting to know a little about you, Ross, I also enjoyed the great excerpt and I enjoyed following the tour and learning about Will and the Whisp, which sounds like a great fantasy for me to read! Good luck with your book and I hope the tour was a success!

    Thanks for sharing it with me and have a marvelous day!

  3. The title does say Scotland to me and pleased the author is Scottish.


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