Place of inspiration


This week I’m writing my blog in France. I’m on a singing holiday with a group of friends in a lovely little town in the Languedoc. It is still and calm and beautiful.
This part of France is a place a love to come and write. There is a feel to it that is unique and which really moves me. It is wine country and there is something about a part of the world that makes its living from the land that speaks to the writer in me. Here I can find inspiration and ideas and, most importantly, the motivation to write.
This link between France and my books is most noticeable in Balance of Betrayal – I spent a week here while I was writing it and the town and castle of Rurig are modelled on La Cité of Carcasonne. This is the great citadel which was rebuilt in the 19th century by Violette-le-Duc and is now a UNESCO world heritage site. If you read the descriptions of the town, you can see how the fortifications are the same as those of the citadel, and how the tournament grounds are located just as they are at Carcassonne. I do sometimes wonder if anyone from La Cité will ever read it and be offended that I demolished the The Basilica of Saints Nazarius and Celsus in an earlier book but hopefully I will be forgiven!

Finding places of inspiration is an essential for any writer. While the bulk of good writing comes from hard graft, knowing places that allow you to stop, relax and open your mind to your fictional world is a key ingredient.
I don’t come to this part of the world all that often. While I’d love to be in a position to spend time here on a regular basis, my ‘day job’ and domestic life call upon me too. So I relish when I come and do all I can to soak up the atmosphere. Then, when I return home, a little piece of it comes with me, carried in my heart and always ready to for me to use as I write.

Cate Caruth is the author of the Bremmand Chronicles. To buy her books or learn more about them, go to

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