Sunday, 8 February 2015

An insight into my research for the Black Rose series #1 - Places

So, I figured maybe it was time to reflect back on my Black Rose series. Now that all five books are out, and the story is done and dusted, I'd like to share some of the research that went into my dark story and why. I was contemplating a mailing list, but wasn't sure anyone would even want them. Instead, I'm using my blog to put down my thoughts, which is what blogs are meant for, after all :-)

Let's start with places. Those from the UK or familiar with it, might've realised right away that I have used real towns and cities of England, but in a fictitious way. I grew up not far from the beach on the South coast of Britain, and we frequented the beaches and coastal towns when I was a kid. When I began writing about Cate, I decided that she should come from a beach town, so I used one of my childhood haunts as inspiration. I loved the idea of her being a small town girl, innocent and naive to the ways of the world and the evil lurking on the periphery of her sheltered life. The fact that she blindly chooses to leave all of that behind to go to hell when Satan comes for her is testament to that. The biggest setting for the Earth based storyline is then undoubtedly London. I just had to use this city, it is a place in which evil can lurk and live, thrive and dominate.

I mention the characters going to places such as Paris, Rome, Bali and watching the Northern lights in Greenland and Iceland (all of which are my bucket-list travel destinations) I also used the towns of Harrogate and Colchester, which are both lovely towns in the UK.
Next I began using towns along the ley lines of Britain. I wanted to use the ley lines and their elements of scientific research, ancient myth and magical fable to add to my storyline. Rather than use Stonehenge, what is undoubtedly the most famous structure along the British ley lines, I used the small town of Avebury. I loved reading about the stones and quickly decided to use Avebury in my story. If you would like to read about the circle of stones in Avebury, here is one of the websites I found very helpful: http://www.visitwiltshire.co.uk/things-to-do/avebury-stone-circle-and-avebury-manor-and-garden-p134483

The other town I found in my research, and decided to use in my story is Winchcombe. I read that it is not only an incredibly old town, but there are also numerous ghost stories and history of unusual experiences there, which I was drawn to instantly. Here is a website I found helpful in my research: http://www.cotswolds.info/places/winchcombe.shtml

After these, I cannot finish without mentioning the amazing cities of Moscow and Rio de Janeiro. I chose these as the 'two ends of the earth' for Lucifer and Uriel to fall from the heavens. I was excited to research both cities, and loved the idea of Uriel looking out at 'Christ the Redeemer' not knowing that he was in fact the most powerful angel in heaven. Even thinking about it makes me smile! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rio_de_Janeiro

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed the little snippet of insight into my Black Rose world. As always, comments are welcome x