Yesterday, we went back to some of the places that loosely provide the setting for Elin’s Air. When writing I had a fictitious picture in my mind of what I was describing. Of course it’s not actual descriptions but I was inspired by real places.
The story condenses and changes real geography, making some of the distances described almost impossible. For Elin and her mother to walk from their home (or from the village that inspired the story) to Bethesda would have taken a whole day. To walk to Caernarfon would have taken about five hours.
Instead, we engage our imagination and bring alive desolate ruins in a story that might have been, but never was.
This is the joy of fiction. We can make something become what it is not in reality. Uncle John’s farm is bigger than this and a bit further up the valley, with an orchard.
There is Ynys Mon beyond and the quarry like a giant’s staircase. I would rather leave the descriptions in the book to your own imagination. However, Wales will always be a beautiful place, that captures imagination, tells tales and inspires stories and legends.