Friday, 6 April 2012

Passion on Good Friday

Been working every hour of the day on setting this week. I'm fascinated by the way mood in a story can be implied by the setting - that includes the season, the weather, the wildlife, the antics of the general public. As a Londoner born and bred, I love to be out and about in my beautiful, diverse city. It's like a character itself, with its many moods and changes. Today, on Good Friday, Trafalgar Square was sombre

Passion of the Christ, Trafalgar Square

and grey, as thousands gathered around Nelson's Column to watch a bloody but beautifully acted Passion of the Christ. It was a great moment to make notes for the lowest scenes in my current novel - the haunting, the despair, the bits where Thomas can see no way out.

It seems barely a couple of weeks, in fact it is barely a couple of weeks, since the same square was bright and full of laughter for Chinese New Year. On that occasion, too, I took my notebook and tried  to etch the details on my

Chines New Year Celebrations, Trafalgar Square

mind for use in some fictional scene or other. I think setting can be a brilliant way of implying everything without overstating it - remember Charles Dickens' character Miss Haversham and that house, all neglected and wild, just like the poor lady's mind?

The Fountains, Trafalgar Square

When summer comes, it'll be the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. The crowds will come again but the fountains of Trafalgar Square will be a bright oasis in the heat.  It'll be a great space for writers like me to do timed writing exercises, make lists and dream of the happy ending - if I decide to let my Thomas Tarling have one, that is.

You can find Trafalgar Square here