The "real" Thomas – where inspirations come from
Stories can evolve from the oddest sources. Music. Things we experience in our daily lives. People we meet. Noises. Smells. A sentence we pick up.
I had the idea for “Lieutenant Samuel Blackwood (deceased)” (the manuscript is with the printers now and the book should be available soon, by the way – end of commercial break) after experiencing an aura shortly before I had an epileptic fit. Some people smell oranges, others rotten bananas, I smell gunpowder. Go figure.
So where does my current “Thomas Gillette” come from? Like many of the characters in my stories, he was inspired by a painting.
Thomas Chatterton died at only 17 years of age, and when I saw this picture, I sat down and wrote the story in one go. The painting by Henry Wallis is very touching; every time I look at it I get a bit melancholic.
The scene is so tragic and hopeless, but also strangely beautiful. Sometimes it would be nice if life could be re-written…