Friday, February 12, 2016

What Inspired Book 2: The Search for the Stone of Excalibur!

Charming Oxford!
Before I started writing I used to wonder what inspired writers, where did their ideas come from, what could have sparked their story. Interestingly, and something many people already know, my first book The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, was sparked by a family trip to Egypt with my mom and my two young nephews. When I’d written the story of my young heroes’ adventures, I realised they hadn’t had time to save the world yet. Another adventure was needed. But what and where could they go? Like many people I am sure, I am a huge Arthurian fan. I then happened to accompany a relative on a tour of Scotland’s castles, but before we went off to discover them, we stopped off at Oxford, England, also a favourite city of mine.

Scotland was marvellous and I came back with all sorts of images and ideas floundering around in my head, but nothing concrete. By then I’d decided my adventure had to include King Arthur and his famed sword Excalibur (where perhaps one would find a Stone of Power embedded in the hilt?), and I so loved Oxford that I had to somehow have my young heroes go there as well. But how was I to marry all these elements together? I am a big Inspector Morse fan and one night I watched an episode called The Wolvercote Tongue, a story about the discovery of a Dark Ages artefact, a jewelled belt buckle, and it involved the Ashmolean Museum (also a favourite!). I woke up in the middle of the night with the plot of The Search for the Stone of Excalibur complete in my head. Of course you’ll have to read the book to enjoy the story, but here’s a little teaser.

Continuing the adventure that began in Egypt a few months prior in The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, cousins Adam and Justin Sinclair are hot on the trail of the second Stone of Power, one of seven ancient stones lost centuries ago. This stone might be embedded in the hilt of a newly discovered sword that archaeologists believe belonged to King Arthur: Excalibur. However, their long-standing enemy, Dr. Khalid, is following them as they travel to Scotland to investigate an old castle. Little do they know there is another deadly force, the Eaters of Poison, who have their own mission to complete. Time is running out as the confluence of the planets draws closer. Can Justin and Adam find the second Stone of Power and survive?

Fairytale Dunrobin Castle

Somehow I managed to find space for not only the museum, but also the prettiest castle in Scotland, Dunrobin Castle, which fitted the bill perfectly for the old castle in the book. I had visited and already decided to squeeze in the best ruined chapel around, Rosslyn Chapel, just filled with incredible and mysterious architecture. I am still amazed at what inspires a writer, be it an image, an event, a place, an experience.
Mysterious Rosslyn Chapel
If you’re looking for more adventures, then please visit The Quest Books, where Middle Grade authors Cheryl Carpinello, Wendy Leighton-Porter and I have teamed up to offer readers an array of exciting quests. Sign up for our monthly newsletter with exciting exclusive material and get your choice of any e-book on the site FREE!

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