After getting so thoroughly sucked into the YA paranormal fiction genre with first the Twilight Saga, then many others like the Evernight series, I came up with an idea. I wanted to add a UK voice to the many brilliant US ones out there, and it seemed an obvious choice, to set my debut novel, Witchblood, here where I grew up.
It’s well known that you should write about what you know, and as I grew up south of Manchester city centre, and now live east of it, it seemed an obvious choice for setting.
In the first chapter Jess gets attacked by a girl-gang, after a night out at a trendy nightclub. There are many dark, cobbled alleyways, flanked with high scruffy Victorian buildings in the city centre, and all provide inspiration for this scene.
Here is one such picture that inspired me:
The nearby north Cumbrian hills seemed ideal as a remote location that would suit Jess’s awakening. If the vampires wanted to get Jess away from the city, a desolate farm in the middle of nowhere would be an ideal hideout.
Once Jess is taken back to Manchester, she is taken to live with Daniel, her maker. He lives in Didsbury, which is a suburb of Manchester, very popular with the students. There are streets filled with huge imposing Victorian & Georgian houses – most of which have now been renovated into student flats, for the two Manchester universities. A student enclave is the perfect place for vampires to live unnoticed. The residents are always changing, and far too involved in their own lives to notice what might be going on next door! I imagine his house to look something like this:
And here is a typical cricket club surrounded by trees, ideal for Jess to watch Luke from, as she desperately tries to control her thirst!