Inspirations for Wraithmoor Castle

My readers have asked me to tell them what inspired the appearance and mood, both inside and out, of the fictitious Wraithmoor Castle Inn  in my book, SHE HAD TO KNOW. Having been fortunate enough to stay in and visit many castles and manor homes during my travels, I drew upon their various attributes. My photographs were a great help and luckily, to aid my memory, I saved all brochures collected along the way.

Since my story is set in Scotland, I needed to capture the Scottish architecture of the period or periods in which it was built, so the exterior reflects mainly the Scots Baronial style mixed with some English Tudor. I then created a drawing of my perception of what the castle would look like. Later, when I was looking for ideas for the book’s cover for my publisher, I was fortunate in finding a photo which was very similar to my concept and drawing.

Wraithmoor Castle Inn

Wraithmoor Castle Inn

To complete the exterior, I needed an elaborate iron gate at the entrance to the parklands of the estate. I already had an idea for that. Chirk Castle in Wales had the perfect gate, although I altered its description.

Chirk Castle Gate

Chirk Castle Gate

I needed spiral steps leading from the residence wing to the scullery, and also to the lower regions of the castle. I found them at Dover Castle in England. (My son populates this picture.)

Spiral Stairway

Spiral Stairway

The rose room that Arran stays in was inspired by The Italian Room at Great Fosters, a manor home in England. I changed it as well, but kept the beautiful mullioned windows.

Italian Room-Great Fosters

Italian Room-Great Fosters

Hever Castle in England and Ruthin Castle in Wales provided lots of inspiration for paintings, the library, drawing room and suits of armor.

Anne Boleyn at Hever Castle

Anne Boleyn at Hever Castle

Suit of Armor

Suit of Armor

Elk Antlers in Entrance Hall

Elk Antlers in Entrance Hall

Library at Hever Castle

Library at Hever Castle

Ceiling at Ruthin

Ceiling at Ruthin

My imagination took hold from there, which certainly wasn’t difficult after seeing so many beautiful sights. For those of you who write, have you combined sites in your stories?

19 Comments

Filed under Art, musings, photographs, Travel, writing

19 responses to “Inspirations for Wraithmoor Castle

  1. It occurred to me to mention you may click on the pictures to enlarge them.

  2. Nyx

    That is so beautiful. I wish I could visit them all right this minute! I have a soft spot for castles.

    When I write I draw on memory and pictures as well for the surroundings, especially nature. I also find visual inspiration in TV-series and similar. I think inspiration is such a flighty creature you need to expose yourself to the world a lot in order to catch it.

    • You are so right, Nyx. Inspiration is sometimes flighty. Often, in the middle of the night, I’m struck with an idea and write it down on a notepad I keep by my bed. That way I don’t forget and have new material to draw upon the next morning. Thanks so much for your comment.

  3. Coco,
    Thank you for the words and pictures, very inspiring.
    What I find, like in my dreams, is that I do not know entirely where my setting comes from when I write regarding a particular locale. Then of course I also often times have ‘moments’ that pop up and change a portion of my writing and the setting at the same time. My brain-library filed from experiences and travels I suppose is so vast that the storage capacity is beyond my present comprehension. Therefore I can’t always supply to others where my idea originated because I can’t even explain it to myself. This also is the same in my Art work; pun intended.
    art

    • How interesting, Art. My brain is also jam-packed. You and I have plenty of travel years and experiences to use for our creations in whatever art form. I’d love to see what you have created. Thanks for the comment.

  4. Joan Trometter

    What great research! I know you spent many, many hours doing this for your book. I, like you and many others, love castles. The architecture, beauty, decor, everything! Great job, Sis.

    • Thank you, Joanie. The difficult thing for this blog was selecting only a few pictures to illustrate my point. There are soooo many! Thank you for stopping by and for your comment.

  5. dellanioakes

    Fantastic! I love the pictures. I can’t wait to read your book!

    • Oh, thanks so much, Dellani! I hope you enjoy it. it took almost 60 years for me to find my sister, after having been separated very early on, so this is a tribute to her. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

  6. Good story and thanks for sharing your photos!

    • Thank you, Karin. You are certainly a person who knows about inspiration! It’s time to revisit your beautiful glass garden. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  7. Fascinating, Coco and I love your drawing–very professional.

  8. Deb Everhart

    A very good read! I enjoyed the book very much! Very much inspired me – I would love to write a book someday – I, too, have just found my half sister – I am 55 and she is 66. She did not know I existed. Still waiting for a happy ending – she is processing. Thank you so much for your inspiration.! So glad that you found your sister!

    • Thank you very much, Deb. Congratulations on finding your sister. I hope you can become friends and create memories together. Searches can be tricky, as I imagine you’ve discovered. Sometimes they work out and, sadly sometimes not, but at least you have the satisfaction of trying. If it’s possible, don’t give up on her.

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