Historical fiction allows us to play with ideas about the past, to walk with those who have gone before us, share their appetites, their hopes, their fears, to indulge our imaginations in flights of fancy as to what was and what might have been. My first historical novel will be set in the Tudor era, examining the tragic life of Sir Thomas More. I’ve chosen More not merely because of his immense intellectual and political importance but because of the empathy I feel with the inner struggles and conflicts he must have faced.
England’s history is bound up with the sea, its ships and all they nurtured. I am also writing about the history of a West Country port, exploring the rich seam of stories that comprise its salty maritime history. I try to listen to all the voices of the past, the ship owners, the ships’ masters, the seamen, both old and wizened and fresh faced and full of youth and energy. I explore the places they would have explored, the sights and sounds they would have encountered. Their lives and their loves.
The covid crisis has been a matter of loss, tragedy and sadness for so many. My fictional short story, Lockdown at Kernewek Lighthouse has been published as Chapter 17 of the Stay Home anthology by the Chasing Driftwood Writing Group. This whimsical story is a gentle heart-warming comedy written to lift people’s spirits. And yes, it includes not only Cornish piskies and knockers but also a rather cross mermaid …
Art by Law Baker, Instagram.com/LawBakerArt