Thanks for inviting me today, Shani—it’s really lovely to visit you in your part of the blog sphere. I’d love to actually be there in the sunny south of England with you but life gets in the way of my real travel experiences just now. Regular grandkid minding means I’m not able to take off on too many jaunts and my travel becomes virtual via the internet, DVD or TV. Sometimes it’s from reflected memories or at other times entirely imaginary.
I’m pleased to say, though, that in my writing I’ve been able to fly off to some wonderful places.
When I’m writing my Celtic Fervour Series of historical novels (published by Crooked Cat), set in the bygone era of late first century AD, I have to imagine what the locations and landscapes were like almost 2000 years ago in northern Britain. Yorkshire, Cumbria, Northumberland and Scotland have changed quite a bit since then but I’ve had to base my visions on the fact that the actual land contours won’t have changed too much. Picturing some of the scenes I’ve described in these novels has meant a trip down a reflected memory route for me as I revisit holiday trips to the locations just mentioned. Since reviews of my historical work are complimentary about my realistic depictions, I’m delighted that I’m successful for those readers.
In my contemporary thriller work, it’s been much, much easier to describe locations.
I loved choosing the places to send my characters to in my contemporary mystery thriller Take Me Now, places I’ve personally loved visiting. Garvald Castle on the island of Lanera, the main base for Nairn Malcolm and Aela Cameron, is entirely fictitious but the setting is created from memories of my visits to the islands off the west coast of Scotland, the whole plot having been conceived after I’d experienced a fabulously exciting seaplane flight from Glasgow to Oban.
Other locations my characters visit in Take Me Now were brilliant to describe— Barcelona, Paris and Tallinn in Estonia, Oman, and The Caribbean—though the depths of the details vary according to their purpose in the plot. Barcelona is a city of such contrasting architecture: it provided me with many exciting moments. I couldn’t believe how amazing the Casa Batlo balconies were- so like masquerade masks and to think they were created more than a century ago! I love my photos of the building. I was desperate to write at length about some of those fantastic buildings but only a few could be written into the novel. Oman, on the other hand, is so different from European cities and Muscat in the dusk is breathtaking. I’ve only been to Cuba in the Caribbean but the scents and plants and clear green-blue sea are so memorable. Who wouldn’t want to use such lovely memories in their writing?
I’ve asked a few of my readers to decide which locations in my contemporary novels are the ones that I haven’t actually been to. Would your readers be able to tell me, I wonder?
Do you like to read about lovely settings in novels?
Shani—Thanks for having me fly down today…
Nancy Jardine writes historical romantic adventures (Celtic Fervour Series); contemporary mystery thrillers (Take Me Now, Monogamy Twist, Topaz Eyes-finalist for THE PEOPLE’S BOOK PRIZE 2014); & time-travel historical adventures for Teen/ YA readers. All historical eras are enticing and ancestry research a lovely time-suck. She regularly blogs and loves to have guests visit her blog. Facebook is a habit she’s trying to keep within reasonable bounds. Grandchild-minding takes up a few (very long) days every week and any time left is for reading and writing.
Find Nancy at the following places
Blog: http://nancyjardine.blogspot.com Website: http://nancyjardineauthor.com
Goodreads Twitter @nansjar Google+ (Nancy Jardine) YouTube book trailer videos Amazon UK author page Rubidium Time Travel Series on Facebook http://on.fb.me/XeQdkG