Remember the font found in the dig James did on the Dearing estate near the Norman ruins, well the design for this came from the lovely font in the church at Avebury, UK. Avebury is famous for standing stones, but there is a lot of history in the village church, and manor house.
If you're thinking it might be a tiny thing, and not capable of having a secret hideaway in one of the carvings as it does in the books, then the photo below shows how big it is. Someone stood near the font as I took a picture.
In the same church there are tombs, and floor plaques. Below is one that helped me with the idea for Richard Tarrant's coat of arms.
So when Tristan was two years old Anketyl was the incumbent in the Avebury church.
Throughout the books the trio often meet their friends, or sit at the Kool Kafe which has a stream, or river run by it. There are many places like that in the UK that inspired this. One place stands out for me, and below is a photo of some houses which front onto a small river running twice through a Cotswold village.
The same village but on the other side of the "street".
Of course the ducks mentioned in the villages have a base in reality too. Here are some in the same Cotswolds village as the streams that run past houses, cafes, and shops.
Finally the lovely photo I took at Raglan Castle, when a dove simply obliged by resting in the age old arrow slit. This is used on the combined book one and two in the saga.
The Seven Spell saga as a series is ending, and book seven will be posted in parts on this blog starting today with four chapters of An Ending and a Beginning. Look for the tab at the top of the blog to read this preview in beta.