My love of history (especially the Tudors) shines through in The Tasks of the Departed like a beacon. I will let this article I wrote recently for a popular history website do all the explaining!
Greetings, and welcome to my blog!
Here, I will be going into further detail about aspects of my life I have paid tribute to in my debut novel, The Tasks of the Departed. I will be elaborating on why I chose to focus on these, and how I intertwined them with my characters and setting as literary tools!
These are the aspects I focussed on in particular: my love of wildlife and history (especially the Tudor era); my favourite author, Charles Dickens; my home city, Birmingham; and a place I regularly travel to for pharmacist shifts: the county of Gloucestershire.
In this first, short and sweet post, I will be focussing on my love of wildlife:
One of the major Spirit-creatures in The Tasks of the Departed is Robin. I adore robins, and I never fail to be thrilled whenever I see one in the garden or in the woods or my local nature reserve. They are beautiful birds, and their association with Christmas makes them even more endearing. In the novel, Robin symbolises joy and comfort, as well as being integral to the plot. He lightens the atmosphere on a number of occasions – whether through his humorous interjections or his musical abilities! This role of his highlights one of the most significant themes in the novel: the importance of bringing a little light into the lives of others.
Another major Spirit-creature is Morfox, a handsome red fox with shape-changing abilities. I have always found it interesting that the symbolism of foxes varies in different cultures, and this is reflected in Morfox’s character. He was the Spirit-creature I had most fun creating and developing, namely because of his many transformations, ranging from fireflies to cages of fire!
You will meet an array of other Spirit-creatures in The Tasks of the Departed too – all of them wonderful in their own way, as are the creatures we come across in life.