Sitting here in the lovely Moo Cafe in the New Town part of Edinburgh, having sent my daughter off on the train to visit a friend, and walked my feet to the bone around the City today. The walking has pretty much characterized the whole trip so far, which is a good thing, since I’ve yet to find a bad piece of chocolate cake in this city. These Scots know their way around an oven, happily for my taste-buds.
Most of the organizational element of this trip is now seen to, and the touring around today was mostly in aide of sharpening the details of the current story. Much of A CLOCKWORK CURIOUSITY is set here in Edinburgh, and the coincidence of my daughter coming here to attend school has been a fortuitous one for me.
I traced the path a couple of my characters take through Leith [had a little trouble finding the tiny maritime museum that features in the story, and even a local postman couldn’t help. But I found an old lady who knew, and made it there in the end.]
Then it was back to the Old Town to check out a few necessary locations — Greyfriars Kirkyard [detail on one side of the church is pictured here] and then into the National Museum of Scotland for a look at a couple of the exhibits that feature in the story.
After that, it was time for a hike up the Royal Mile to revisit some of the tiny Closes that appear in a chase scene. [A peek at Fleshmarket Close, above…]
Everything checked out very well, thankfully. I’ve been to this city three or four times before, so it looks like my memory has held up pretty well. Still — I’m hoping this visit will help me amp the atmosphere of the story. Like every epic fantasy, it’s the grounding in reality that will decide whether this dog howls or not.
Tomorrow I head north to Inverness and then onward from there. Will report in as wifi allows.