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.