Claire Fayers - Storm Hound Blog Tour - Guest Post - Finding the Right Place
Hello everybody. Welcome to Day 4 of Claire Fayer's Storm Hound blog tour. HAPPY PUBLICATION DAY. To celebrate the book release today, we are flying across the Welsh sky in search of "Finding the right place" which is the brilliant topic of today's guest post. So sit down, relax and hopefully, this post will inspire you to pick up and read this loveable rogue of a book. If you fancy reading my book review click Here. Make sure you check out all of the stops on this fun blog tour - please see the banner below for all the tour stops.
Storm could see mountains from here: a low peak rising up in the distance, and three hills in front of it, which, if he squinted, looked a bit like the paw of a giant dog. He knew the mortal world was indifferent to the world of magic, but the sight cheered him a little, as if the landscape had made an effort to welcome him.
I’ve been asked many times already why I chose to set a fantasy adventure in Abergavenny. It doesn’t seem a likely place for adventure – a little Welsh town, tucked away between mountains. What could possibly happen in Abergavenny?
A few years back I’d have agreed. I’ve always loved fantasy set in invented worlds, and when I started to write, that’s where my imagination went. Fantastical stories needed fantastical settings. But, after two adventures with the Accidental Pirates, and a mystery set in an alternative Britain, I began to wonder. What if we didn’t have to go to other worlds to find magic? What if magic could find us (as we say in Wales) over by here?
That’s why, when Storm fell from the sky, he didn’t crash into a fantasy landscape or even somewhere big and important, like New York or London, or even Cardiff.
At first, I did it purely for comedy. I thought it would be hilarious to dump my arrogant young stormhound in a place that had no pretensions of grandeur. Within a couple of chapters, though, I knew this little town was absolutely right. I love the way the town is surrounded by mountains as if they’re standing guard. Walk along the narrow High Street and you’ll find all the essentials – a book shop, some lovely cafes, and a cheese shop.
Also, of course, there is a castle.
(Abergavenny Castle – photo by Claire Fayers)
Storm enjoys going for walks here. The site dates back to 1087 and there’s a real sense of history. Most of the castle was destroyed during the civil war in 1645-46, but there’s a small museum sitting right on top of the original motte.
I had to invent a few things for the story. Abergavenny High School doesn’t exist. Neither does the Abergavenny Dog Rescue Centre. But I know exactly where Jessie’s house is. If you stand in the back garden you’ll be facing the Sugarloaf Mountain and, if you squint a bit you may think the three foothills look like the paw of a giant dog.
I didn’t actually find out about the Sugarloaf hills until I was well into editing the book, but that little detail had to go straight in. It was proof if anyone needs it, that Storm’s story could not happen anywhere else.
Author Bio: Claire Fayers grew up in South Wales, studied English and Comparative Literature at the University of Kent in Canterbury, and is now back in Wales where she spends a lot of her free time tramping around castles in the rain, looking for dragons.
She has worked as a church caretaker, a shoe shop assistant, in accountancy, in health and safety, in IT, and in a library. Only one of these prepared her in any way for life as a full-time author.
Her first book came about after she won a writing competition. She was more surprised than anyone.
She works from her home in Cardiff, sharing her workspace with a pair of demanding cats and an ever-expanding set of model dinosaurs who sometimes like to pretend they are pirates. More about Storm Hound… Storm of Odin is the youngest stormhound of the Wild Hunt that haunts lightning-filled skies. He has longed for the time when he will be able to join his brothers and sisters but on his very first hunt, he finds he can’t keep up and falls to earth, landing on the A40 just outside Abergavenny. Enter 12-year-old Jessica Price, who finds and adopts a cute puppy from an animal rescue centre. And suddenly, a number of strange people seem very interested in her and her new pet, Storm. People who seem to know a lot about magic . . . In Claire Fayers’ electrifying adventure Storm Hound, Jessica starts to see that there’s something different about her beloved dog and will need to work out which of her new friends she can trust. For more information please visit Claire Fayers’ website, and do follow her on Twitter.