Friday, 5 April 2013

Jail bound

Not really... Yesterday I officially booked a stay in a hostel that is a converted federal jail. Why? Because, well, I needed a place to stay on my trip to visit my good friend and as the jail is now converted into a hostel it's relatively inexpensive for a long stay. So, looks as though I'll be sharing a former jail cell with 5 other girls. Not expecting comfort but it will definitely be a life experience which is good, maybe it will even inspire my novel in some way.

The building itself is old, stone and brick, covered in moss and vines. Simply looking at pictures has been somewhat inspiring in itself I can only imagine what actually seeing in and being inside will do. Hopefully things go smoothly but at the end of the day it's really just a place to lay your head, better than a park bench. It just so happens I'm hoping that along with now having a place to stay on my trip I may be hauled up in my cell with a flow of writing inspiration. No laptop with me so I'll have my trusty journal along side to take down any or all experiences that offer relevance to my story, or better yet may even inspire a whole new idea.

And, even better than all of this, I only recently realised ( quite literally just a few seconds ago) I will be living the exact Experience of one of my favorite Canadian Literary characters mystery solver Liz Austen, who just happens to be from the same home town as me. I'll be reliving (only somewhat I hope) her experiences in the Eric Wilson novel Vampires of Ottawa the novel starts out with her description of being put in a cell on death row at the hostel. It's described in the first chapter.

" This place, called the Nicholas Street Youth Hostel, had once been a prison, but now is a place for travelers to stay.  I suppose it may be an adventure for some people to sleep on death row, but I'm not sure I recommend it! Glancing into the cells gave me the creeps. " - Wilson, Eric: Vampires of Ottawa  Chapter 1 

Well she may not have recommended the experience but we'll see what I have to say about it when it's all said and done. For now, I'm just excited and maybe I'll give that novel another read to see exactly what sort of experience she had, I think I was in the 5th grade when I fell in love with that book so it's likely my memory on the details is probably vague. Hopefully I don't get put on death row, I'll try to behave.

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