Carnage Cottage

Strange name for a pretty, but slightly dilapidated building in a beautiful part of France. It’s the slightly ironic name I gave to a real-life location I used in my book, Murder He Forgot, and then again recently in the book I’m writing, Assasination Continuum. In the first book, carnage took place when a stakeout by the French police ended with the violent death of a cruel villain who’d inflicted shocking brutality on one of my protagonists.

The cottage, seen in the photo, is genuine and authentic, and can be found in The Camargue, a wild and desolate part of Southern France, where grey, wild horses and black bulls roam freely across the dusty marshland, and pink-looking flamingos, coots, grey herons, and many other birds rise up from the vast lake called the Étang de Vaccarès. Bamboo trees run along the edges of the narrow roads and dusty tracks that surround the rice paddies and unkempt fields.
Once I’d chosen The Camargue for the last part of Murder He Forgot, I visited the area and came across the cottage. It was eerie, but ideal for the scary things I wanted to take place there, and the carnage that followed.
So – when I wanted another remote and deserted location for a scene in The Tired Assassin, Carnage Cottage came to mind and seemed the obvious choice. I suppose I indulged in a form of plagiarism on my own work.
I’ve reinvented and reworked characters from previous books, and reincarnated them in more recent work, but this is the first time I’ve used a past location for a second time.
Call it lazy or similar, but I think if you’ve done the research on a location by visiting and reading up on it, and you think it fits the new scene you’re writing – why not use it again?
When and if I’m in the lucky position of having all my books read by someone, and they notice my reinventions and reincarnations, and make adverse comments, I guess I’ll probably pay head and stop doing it.
The good news – I get to travel to new places again.

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2 thoughts on “Carnage Cottage

  1. Personally, I think it's neat that you work in old characters in new ways – it gives a sense of continuity to your work. I don't see any problem with using the cottage again – how many cottages for rent are there in that area? It makes sense that another character might choose to retreat there and coincidentally get the same cottage. *shrug*

  2. Thanks. The area is near Ben's new in-laws house, which is how I get to visit it and know so much about it. Surprisingly there are quite a few of these dilapidated places to buy or rent. Had an interesting comment from someone who'd reading The Tired Assassin on Wattpad. He likes it, but doesn't want me to do anything nasty to Gary Lester, the alcoholic. Have to see about that!

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