I want to talk about the Looe Literary Festival to be held in November and to which I’ve been invited to speak about writing a Regency Romance and where I get my inspiration.
Mmm… Where do I get my inspiration? The answer to that is quite simple; I get my inspiration everywhere although I always incorporate something that actually happened during the time set of each book – in Lady Tilly’s Racing Heart, the fifth in my Clifton series, the story is set around the Clifton Cup, an important horse race which took place every year on Clifton Down.
But that is only the beginning. Much of my inspiration comes from modern day happenings, for what happens to us on a daily basis is not so very different from those happenings of yesteryear. For instance, when living in Polperro, Cornwall I used to be mistaken for Rita Tushingham, whose house was not far from mine. This could (and probably will) sow the seeds of a story about mistaken identity.
Later I moved from Cornwall to Greece and the island of Mykonos. When first setting foot on those shores I thought I’d died and gone to heaven because all the men were so beautiful! It took a while but eventually the penny dropped and I realised that those beautiful men were only for each other and most definitely not for me – another story about mistakes and in the context of a Regency novel perhaps an inexperienced country girl could go to town and be dazzled by the exquisites of that time.
But my real inspiration is, and always has been, Jane Austen, whose sharp eye and wonderful prose is a gift to writers of Regency fiction like me – I would, if I could, touch the hem of her frock before crawling away to put pen to paper, humbly aspiring to write just a tiny fraction as well as her.
I will be speaking at the Guildhall on Sunday 16th November at 3pm. Do come along and say hello.