|Littleborough Car Wash|
Inspiration for Devils Pursuits first death
|Hare Hill Park, Littleborough|
|Hare Hill House, Littleborough|
The following day I took a shortcut through my local park on the way to the shops when I spotted an unusually small grave in the middle of a small patch of grass. I hadn't noticed it before despite the numerous times I had passed this way before. At first I was appalled, thinking it had to be a child's but then I read the inscription and was intrigued.
When I returned home, I looked online for info. Mephisto had been a pet monkey of the owners of Hare Hill House in the late 1800's. One night he escaped and climbed to the rooftops before falling to his death. Somehow, I knew I had to use this in my novel and it wasn't long before another outing provided further inspiration.
|Skipton Castle Central Courtyard, South Yorkshire|
The following week me and my family went to Skipton in South Yorkshire for the day where we spent a memorable afternoon in the castle there. I remember sitting beneath the tree in the courtyard and looking up at the huge tree overhead. The courtyard is beautiful but also strangely atmospheric. My thoughts were drawn immediately to how I could place my characters in a similar setting and then the scandalous events to bind them together. I couldn't wait to get started.
|Chaucer & Cheese, Devils Pursuits|
Of course my courtyard couldn't be in a castle so I knew that one of the characters I wanted to take forward from Devil May Care was Tommy the chef. My courtyard became part of an old vicarage and Tommy was following his dream of owning his own bistro-cum-bookshop...Chaucer & Cheese.
|Devils Pursuits, Caprice|
I had the bones in place and now I needed the flesh. I also needed a temptress and so Caprice was born. The fiery red-head who thinks only of herself and how to get what she wants. Red devils are not always what they appear to be. Caprice had to have depths to explore and her connection to another new character, Mr. Phestoz (Mephisto for short) had to be a mystery for all my characters, new and old, to get to grips with. Each of their lives would be impacted by these two new characters and their strange game.
The photo opposite was one of my own concoction. I'm behind the mask. My temptress was created by the author, me.
I now had a setting, characters and a basic story direction. I spent quite some time exploring who my new characters are and I placed them in the same rooms to see what they would say to each other and how they would react before I began writing my novel. Using material I had prepared and was happy with I found that the real magic began once I had introduced a supporting cast. Their dialogues and reactions to the events unfolding around them almost wrote themselves. It was an absolute pleasure to be the fly on the wall.
|Littleborough Train Station|
|Amazon Review of Devils Pursuits|