An unforgettable writer’s paradise.

It was at Tonfannau, in 2015, that I began writing Anywhere the Wind Blows. A major character in the book is called Cai Traherne. He appeared to me first in a dream and then over the coming weeks his story began to unfold as I sat on this remote beach where the Dysynni river meets the sea.

There is a scene in the book which is instantly recognisable as Tonfannau. Aptly translated ‘the place of waves’ (of which there was a myriad when the wind blew off the sea), it was the place where I conquered my fear of visiting remote beaches alone after recovering from the freak accident of 2014 – it was like jumping back on a horse after being thrown.

I spent many hours here, hand writing the first draft of Anywhere the Wind Blows or combing the beach for driftwood thrown up by the tide, while Morgan and Jess explored the rock pools. I didn’t see another soul along this beach. My only company was Morgan and Jess, and the cormorants and wild swans that came flying down the river valley to land on the shoreline.  I stayed for over six weeks with the motor-home parked up in an idyllic location nearby – this place, translated from the Welsh, is called ‘the parish of the blessed’. Blessed is how I feel to have so many memories of my time spent in this paradise. It was the one place I visited which I wished I didn’t have to leave. It was devilishly cold some days with the January and February winds blowing off the sea…

WP_20150204_13_09_59_Pro

…in the distance is the snow capped mountain of Snowdon.

WP_20150203_11_59_43_Pro

Tonfannau is a place where the wild sea has reclaimed cliff top buildings and moulded them into the shapes of waves…

WP_20150201_11_55_59_Pro

…and stone walls are things to gaze upon with awe at the craftsmanship involved…

WP_20150215_14_47_24_Pro

…and gate posts are works of art….

WP_20150215_14_47_54_Pro

Of all the places I stayed, it is the one I most lost my heart to and wish to revisit one day to walk this road which was the daily one back to our base.

WP_20150204_13_35_34_Pro

When I left here I traveled inland. Following the injury of 2014 I thought I’d never be able to climb another hill. What more romantically named place could I prove myself wrong than on Velvet Hill?  Velvet Hill overlooks Llangollen on one side…

WP_20150405_17_24_18_Pro

… and Valle Crucis Abbey on the other…

WP_20150401_13_11_08_Pro__highres

Near here is the holy well which George Borrow drank from when visiting this fabulous ruin…

WP_20150402_16_44_20_Pro

After perhaps too long travelling hither and thither, I found myself longing for more familiar territory…

WP_20150708_15_57_10_ProWP_20150531_16_09_56_Pro

I returned to retread those ancient paths which had led me to my ancestors and writing inspiration…

WP_20150415_14_20_26_Pro__highres WP_20150415_12_22_21_Pro WP_20150415_13_35_37_Pro  WP_20150415_13_32_34_Pro

I knew then where I needed to be. I needed to go home. ‘Home’ to me has always been among those beautiful hills and lanes where I grew up in Mid-Wales. I found a little cottage to make my home, along a country lane less than a mile from my birthplace, with nearby views of mountains I have loved all my life….

WP_20151007_07_54_44_Pro  WP_20150907_15_01_57_Pro WP_20150926_12_40_54_Pro

…and places where I walk in the footsteps of my ancestors…

WP_20150906_14_42_54_Pro WP_20150906_14_29_31_Pro__highres WP_20150417_13_10_33_Pro

When I climb Mynydd Eppynt and look from west to east, I can locate the birthplaces of my daughter, myself, my mother, my grandmother, a great-grandmother, a great-great grandmother, and the resting place of the great-great-great grandparents who came across the mountains from Strata Florida to make their home here….

WP_20151031_13_07_07_Pro

Perhaps home is not so much where our hearts lie but where the soul feels it belongs.

Jenny Lloyd is the Welsh author of The Megan Jones trilogy; historical suspense novels set in early, 19th century, rural Wales.

Leap the Wild Water new book cover meadow      The Calling of the Raven updated book cover      Anywhere the Wind Blows Book Cover - jpg

You can read about the books or purchase them by clicking on the links below.

Leap the Wild Water: http://ow.ly/jEoi302jXkd

The Calling of the Raven: http://ow.ly/4uRO302jXmd

Anywhere the Wind Blows: http://ow.ly/i1sy302jXXK

You can also follow the author:

Twitter; https://twitter.com/jennyoldhouse

Facebook; https://www.facebook.com/jennylloydauthor

Pinterest; http://www.pinterest.com/jennyoldhouse

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

15 thoughts on “An unforgettable writer’s paradise.

  1. Welcome back! Such a joy to see your blog again! What beautiful and stunning pictures. I’m so glad you have found home again. That is the greatest part of life’s journey I think – not the travelling but the coming home. Please let us see your new cottage as well. I have come, through your writing and Jan Romes as well, to adore Wales and anything Welsh – and my ancestry is all Scots! But I would truly feel at home there, it is so peaceful and restful. Looking forward to more, more, more!

    • Thank you, Christina, it’s good to be back.x I noticed you have a new book published – The Crossing. I’ve looked for it on Amazon but can’t find it. When is it available online?

      • And thank you, Malla. I’m so glad my blog has contributed to your love of all things Welsh. If you ever get a chance to visit, do wait until the weather improves. We have been deluged with rain for two months now. More rain this season than I can ever remember.

  2. Jenny,welcome back.It’s brilliant to hear from you again. I have often searched to see if you had returned after your awful time in 2014. So glad you have found somewhere to settle.Jx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s