Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Research for "The Charming Devil"

After a month of illness in November, and a busy December with ARC's and details regarding my February release, The Charming Devil, to be completed, as well as Christmas, my blog was neglected. But I am back now, promoting my new book, and giving you some idea of how it was created.

For "The Charming Devil" most of my research had to do with location. The Charming Devil is not a time travel, or a 'journey' book, nor is it based in a city, so I was involved in exploring Wiltshire. In particular, I was learning about the north of Wiltshire, near the Vale of Pewsey. It is a beautiful part of England, and there are many websites devoted to it.
 

Milk Hill, highest point in Wiltshire


 
I was intrigued by the Wiltshire dialect, and found two of my characters, the Cromer sisters, using terms like 'cack-handed' (awkward or clumsy) and 'sprawny' (sweetheart). A good resource is A Glossary of Words used in the County of Wiltshire from Gutenberg.org
Kesiah Cromer is a good cook and creates local delicacies such as bacon fraise and lardy cake.

The fictional village I created and called Houldam lies somewhere east of Devizes, a prosperous wool and market town during the Regency.
The market cross in Devizes, a replacement built in 1814
The nearest large house in the neighbourhood of Houldam is 'Brasehill', which I also invented. I imagine it looking somewhat like Grove Park, the seat of Thomas Villiars, Earl of Clarendon, near Watford below.
from bl.uk onlinegallery
Houldam itself is small with just two or three shops and an inn. It looks, in my mind's eye, rather like Lower Quinton in Gloucestershire as sketched by W. A. Green in the mid-1900s.
Finally I leave you with a picture below that to me illustrates my heroine Cecily and her daughter Lucy.
by Marguerite Gerard
Please visit my website for more details about "The Charming Devil". And come back here for more blog posts in the coming year!

'Til next time,
Lesley-Anne



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