I recently changed my home base for Evensong from Toronto to Montreal. A random decision, but after I made it I realised how perfect it is. Not only does the city click with my characters, but it also gave me a great opportunity to do some hands-on location scouting for the sequel (yes, there is a sequel. No doubt you’ll all be hearing lots and lots about it. Apologies in advance)!
Montreal is one of my favourite places to visit. Not only is the shopping fantabulous–although, I was a very good girl and limited my spending to food. ohmigod cake. I also need to give a shout out to this incredible cafe/bakery where I stopped for breakfast in Old Montreal called Olive & Gourmando–the culture is unique and the historical aesthetic is gorgeous. As chance would have it, I’d just finished reading Two Solitudes by Hugh McClennan, so my tour also got to bring to life a lot of that story as well.
I went there with certain goals in mind: Seek out Jeff’s and Cassie’s apartment, visualise some scenes that take place in the first part of the book, and track down Rockaberry: the pie shop. In less than 48 hours, I succeeded.
I’ve travelled quite a bit this year, but so far this trip was my favourite. Maybe because of the cake or the show, maybe because after a 6 hour walk I had the best sleep in years, or maybe because I got to spend time with my characters in a way I’ve never experienced before. I looked at the city as Jeff would, or Cassie, or some surprise return people, and it gave me a new perception not only of them, but Montreal in general.
The real life tour is an experience I’ll be taking as often as possible can in future. What are your favourite methods of choosing locations or visualising your settings?