Friday, 27 June 2014

Halifax, Yorkshire - a walk into another world

After writing and then editing my new novel, I left it alone for a good while. Then, when I was ready to begin rewrites I took a trip to the place I had used for its story - Halifax, Yorkshire.

I began my journey at the closing scene in my second book 'Star Keeper.'  In it I had used my home town, Littleborough as the point of departure for my protagonist and it seemed fitting that I should repeat the journey she took. Without realising it she left a nightmare situation to then enter a new world of intrigue and mystery. I didn't have the storms and torrential rain she had travelled in but after one of the wettest winters on UK record, it wasn't difficult to imagine.
Littleborough train station where Star Keeper's protagonist made good her escape
When I alighted from a train I was back in the place that had so inspired me for my new book. I left the train station to take the same walk as my protagonist but I looked at what seemed like ordinary streets through her eyes.
Halifax, Yorkshire - an old Minster town. My protagonist from Star Keeper enters a new world of mystery and intrigue.

I then walked to the places that had inspired scenes for my book.
Piece Hall, Halifax - a scene for one of the chapters in my new book and now being renovated
By the time I had finished (too many places to list here) I was immersed in my story afresh. When I returned home, I was then able to re-read my manuscript through the eyes of not only a reader but the characters from my book.

Tactile connections, a simple walk, a journey, can re-open the creative flow and with it comes new perspectives. When I thought about how this would work for a writer of sci-fi, I realised that it is not so much about the physical structures as how those structures make the writer feel and then what the writer does with them.



Friday, 20 June 2014

Summer retreat

It's Friday morning and I've been working since 7am after a week of 12 hour days. Who says being a writer's life is easy? Writing a blog is my break this week.

I discovered recently that my first two books, Temptation and Star Keeper will go to print hopefully by the end of the year and I've been charged with taking a fresh look at them - no doubt there will be changes. I originally wrote Temptation in 2007 and Star Keeper in 2010 but then took a couple of years to rewrite and refine. A lot has happened since then and I felt my writing evolving. Before I attempt to look at them though I must finish rewrites on my third book.

And so I'm faced with a Friday of writing and when I look up from my laptop all I can see is a whole summer of rewrites. Now this may seem daunting for most folk but to me its doing something I live to do.  At least I have somewhere beautiful to write - my garden.

On top of all this I thought of another book and had to reluctantly push research notes and jottings to one side but every now and then I can't resist taking a peek at the many visuals pinned to them. It's like waiting for a Christmas present and I won't know exactly what will be in it until I begin to peel away my notes.

My garden