This is going to be more of a woody photo gallery blog this week… with a bit of wordy stuff thrown in for good measure.
I’m a bit of a tree fanatic, and have been for as long as I can remember. I’m not sure if I am, in some way, genetically disposed to love trees and woods, or if it was because my upbringing gave me access to these things, that I now feel so at home with them. I certainly have plenty of memories of being amongst woodland as a child. We also had a garden full of trees – I remember six big ones, 2 apple, a pear, a huge romping willow, which I spent hours playing under, and 2 poplars whose towering branches against the sky took my breath away. There were also 2 or 3 smaller tress, one of which was a pussy willow tree that would become covered in the softest yellow catkins, as if someone had knitted them each their own mohair sweater. I have distinct memories of all of these and the feelings of magic that they filled me with. They definitely inspired me then, and do now. Perhaps this is why woodland often seems to exist as a separate character in some of my stories, and why the woodland featured in Buttercup Magic is part of the magic of the story.
This Tibetan Cherry tree is one of the most beautiful trees I have ever seen, with its
stunning red bark. It grows at Parc Glynllifon on the Lleyn Peninsula, Wales, one of the most incredible places I’ve ever visited and even had an amphitheatre in the middle of the wood.
This tree below was growning in the woodland surrounding Port Meirion, Wales, ‘snapped’ on holiday last Summer. I fell in love with this tree, which, you have to admit, gives a whole new meaning to the word ‘trunk’!
These straight up and down pines at Clumber Park, Worksop, Notts are some of my favourite trees. In fact, this is one of my very favourite places, and this particular area, my ‘dream’ writing place.
There are so many reasons I like trees, apart from ‘just because’ – their movement, their stillness, their colour, the way they play with the light and the way the light plays with them, their crooked shapes, the way they stand so tall and straight, their varying shades of green, their bareness in winter… and their bark, which is so incredibly tactile.
Whatever shape or form they take, I feel that when I am amongst trees, I have ‘come home’. I find them truly inspirational, whether they become a setting for a story, a metaphor in a poem, or merely provide me with an environment that seems to feed my creative thoughts.
What inspires you to write?
Oh, and by the way, I am having a book launch for ‘Grub’s Pups’, the third in the Ruby and Grub series, on Saturday 29th October, 11am, at Waterstone’s in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. Please feel free to drop by, say hello and grab a drink and a lolly!