Creative Inspiration for Raine of Fire
By Susan Stradiotto, author of Raine of Fire
I find that life and sometimes the tiniest situations offer much in the way of creative energy for me. The world and characters in Raine of Fire are no exception. In truth, the book does have some little gems that crept in from my day-to-day life. I probably have no way to name them all, but I thought I would share a few in this article.
When I wrote this novel, I had recently visited Glasgow, Scotland. Wickney Square, where Raine performs, is greatly inspired by George Square in Glasgow. Many photos of that can be found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Square. I took liberties with what kinds of statues were in place and the shops on the northern length of the square, but WPD (Wickney Police Department) and the courthouse are largely based on the buildings you see in these photos.
I live in a suburb of Minneapolis, and we have a bar downtown called The Local. So, I’m sure you can guess where Wickney’s Local and Local U came from. It’s namely the inspiration for the upstairs portion of the club in Wickney. The lower level could really be attributed to any nightclub you might have visited. There are some fabulous photos of the inside of Minneapolis’s Local on this website: https://www.minneapolis.org/directory/the-local-an-irish-pub/.
When I conceived of this series, my aim was to create characters in the vein of Richard Castle and Kate Beckett from the TV series Castle or Bones and Booth from Bones. I wanted it to be that kind of romantic banter that teases people into “shipping” the characters and craving the next episode to find out if they’ll ever have the first kiss or date. The one I never planned to emulate was Lucifer. In fact, I’d never watched it before I started getting reviews telling me how similar they are. I agree, but I do assure you it’s total coincidence.
Raine’s love for whiskey is greatly based on my son, who doesn’t drink but found his love for Scotch while we visited Scotland. Kennedi’s mother’s name is a family name. And her migraines, well, I suffered from those for many years.
The choice of Wisconsin for placing my fictional city was entirely random, but I once traveled to Minocqua to visit a friend and loved the area. So placing the Minocqua Mental Health Center there was because I found it quite peaceful in northern Wisconsin.