Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Got home and now am sorting through it all...

I've got so much I need to sort out, non-the-least regarding my financial condition and how much this trip set me back. My main concern was making sure I hadn't overdrawn on my bank account. Seems used bookshops in Derry don't take credit cards, so I went through my allowance on the first day. And I did wind up buying another copy of a book I already had...dammit. I should've taken a list. And don't get me started on the number of copies I paid for off the microfiche.

But this trip has solidified a number of issues in my head about Place of Safety. To start with, I'm still approaching the first section, from 1966-1972, from too American a viewpoint. The societal and family structures are much more expansive and encompassing than I was allowing for, so I have aspects in what I've written that would work fine in the US but are completely wrong for Derry...for Ireland as a whole.

However, some parts do work well, now. Like when Brendan's at the October 5th Civil Rights March in Derry, starting on Duke Street and planning to cross the Craigavon Bridge to go to The Guildhall, and it's attacked by out-of-control policemen with batons and water cannons before they even really begin -- I got all of that right. Along with the location of the Foyle Street Bus Centre at the time.

I also got how hundreds of Unionist reactionaries were holed up in The Guildhall to try and keep the Civil Rights Marchers from reaching there, on the January 1969 walk from Belfast, but according to news reports at the time, there was some serious fighting and push-back going on by most of the Catholic crowd outside, so that the constables were overwhelmed and the Unionists had to pretty much defend themselves. This is barely referred to in most of the books I have, if at all.

So there's a lot of work ahead, but it's not like I'm starting from the beginning...I just need to expand on some things.

Expand on favorite phrase when it comes to writing.

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