I love Cornwall, Cornish cream, Cornish history I’m a fan of author, Jane Jackson. Jane makes Cornish history come alive in her books. I have asked her to be a guest on my blog, so here she is.Ladies and Gentlemen, (imagine trumpet fanfare here) allow me to introduce the talented, gorgeous and kind Jane Jackson. She also has a free gift for you. Told you she was kind, didn’t I?
Hi everyone. It's a real pleasure to have this opportunity to talk about the source of my inspiration – Cornwall. I live in a village at the head of a creek that flows out into the third largest natural harbour in the world. As children we used to go blackberrying in an old stone quarry half a mile along the creek. We swam off the shingle beach along from what was then a working dockyard dating back to Nelson's time, but is now a yacht marina. After our swim we would build a fire from driftwood and cook dampers made from flour and water wrapped round a twig then stuffed with jam. In late autumn we went to the woods and collected chestnuts, opening the cases with our feet to avoid the prickles.
The village is surrounded by footpaths across farmland, through woods, beside the creek and around the coast to Flushing. I do a lot of my plotting while walking paths that have existed for hundreds of years.
Though Flushing was where many of the captains chose to live, Falmouth – across the river - was the base for the first packet service. These ships carried mail to every corner of the world, dispatches to theatres of war, and ransom money to free the wives and daughters of merchants captured by Algerian pirates. They brought back bullion from sugar plantations in Jamaica and silver mines in South America. The roles of the packet ships feature in Dangerous Waters and Tide of Fortune. In Eye of the Wind, a boatyard building a packet ship, and the woods supplying the timber, are background to a story of espionage, treachery, courage and love.
Of my 27 published books, 16 have either been set in Cornwall, or the story has started there before events send the characters on a journey both physical and emotional.
When people think of Cornwall's history they often think of tin mining and fishing. I have never used tin mining as a background. Because other authors have done so to excellent effect, I chose to explore different backgrounds and settings: Cargo broking; C19th medicine; building a railway; granite quarrying; ship-building; woodland management; packet ship (1) carrying ransom money to Tangier; packet ship (2) work of a ship's doctor; work of a local justice; smuggling; port development.
I'm thrilled that my books are now available on Kindle and other ebook readers. Accent Press has already published ebook editions of Dangerous Waters and A Place of Birds. Eye of the Wind (shortlisted for the Romantic Novel of the Year Award) The Iron Road and Tide of Fortune will follow over the next few days.
From Sept 9th to 13th A Place of Birds will be free of charge so why not download it?
I hope to have my latest historical romance, Winds of Change, finished before Christmas as the next story is already bubbling in my head demanding to be told.