For several years I was caretaker for an isolated holiday letting cottage in the Yorkshire Dales. It had borehole water, plenty of resident mice, sheep that messed the garden and fell ponies that blocked the entry gate and were also known to kick. It was only my second week when an unhappy tenant rang me late at night to say the bedroom ceiling had fallen in! No injuries, I’m happy to say, but the setting gave me the idea for NEW LEASE OF LIFE (in the collection TOWN MEETS COUNTRY) and also for SNOW PICNIC (free download under Books tab).
I once toured the Royal Yacht Britannia, moored at Leith, Edinburgh, and saw how compact it was and the cramped quarters for staff and crew. Then I read an article about super yachts owned by the very rich and how they are run. It inspired me to write MUTUAL DESIGNS (in the collection HOME AND ABROAD).
A visit to my local MP’s constituency ‘surgery’ inspired POWER TO THE PEOPLE in which a female MP gets involved in a local alternative power project and its rather dishy designer.
Finally the tire blow-out in the middle of Africa portrayed in WRITTEN IN THE BEADS (also in the collection HOME AND ABROAD) really did happen to me (45 years ago!), although I wasn’t being pursued by a felon.