From Varanasi to Valletta

This has got to be one of the best bits about writing a book. It gives you the perfect excuse to travel about the globe. I went backpacking three times around various parts of India when I was in my twenties and thirties (before I’d even dreamt of writing my book) and experienced first hand the amazing diversity of my favourite country. I kept travel journals which are now a rich source for my writing. It brings it all back to life. One of my itineries included a visit to  Varanasi (Benares) where my Protagonist grew up and the breathtaking hill station of Nainital where she was schooled and subsequently ran a restaurant (Barnes on the Mall). More recently I had a short break in Valletta, Malta…which was just as well as I’d already written the chapter of the book that includes a scene from Valletta and I’d completely misjudged it…..It’s so easy to read a guide book but you don’t get the sense of place, the smells, the ambience, the vibe, the soul without living in it, even if only for a short while. Closer to home I have discovered Shaldon, such a pretty seaside town, Colchester  and sorry Clactonites but Clacton was my least favourite weekend fact finding trip. A few weeks ago I went to Liverpool to see the docks and the Adelphi Hotel. The only location left is Catterick!


Varanasi (Benares)




Boat house – nainital








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