Over the last few days, I have been updating my website – specifically to collate as much news and information to promote my second book, Visions, from the series ‘Same Face Different Place.’ I have just written a page which depicts the setting of this story and was so pleased with it, I decided to publish this as a blog.
‘Book 2 – Visions’ runs from 1984 to 1987
Politics: Mrs Thatcher’s government brought an element of turmoil into British Politics, from the miners’ strike, to the Brixton riots. It was a decade where people started to care about the environmental, where aerosols were banned and there was a growing anti-nuclear movement. The rebellious uprising of the new age traveller movement culminated in the ‘Battle of the Beanfield’ where police attacked a convoy of vehicles at Stonehenge yet, this was also the decade of greed, with a rising ‘yuppie’ culture, especially in London.
For more visuals and sound, visit my Pinterest Board based on this novel
Fashion: the mid 80s saw a rise in sportswear and lycra, as inspired by the fitness craze, brought by Fame and Flashdance. Doc martens and mini skirts became popular as did figure-hugging cocktail dresses. The 80s trend of power and wealth also brought a passion for designer labels and ‘power dressing’ : sharp suits, huge shoulder pads and trench coats.
Music and TV: Music from the 80s is still highly memorable with indie bands such as the Echo and the Bunnymen and the Smiths. At the same time, there was something synthetic and futuristic about 80s music, typified by groups such the Eurythmics and Kraftwerk. Then we saw a surge of materialism where Madonna became a big star, as did groups such as Wham and the Petshop Boys. TV shows definitely became more interesting – from American soaps such as Dallas and Dynasty to new culinary programs such as Masterchef – plus an explosion of memorable British comedy including ‘Spitting Image’, Blackadder, the Young Ones and Only Fools and Horses.
I grew up in the 80s and in the years this book was set, I was actually studying at Trent Polytechnic. It was indeed a very influential decade, with militant left wing politics competing with a new and emerging era of wealth and materialism. Interest rates soared as did house prices – and in the year before I graduated we saw the emerging blight of ‘gazumping’ – where young people suddenly found it impossible to get on the housing ladder. The Electrification of the railway line brought an influx of wealthy commuters into rural areas of Britain, many of whom bought up properties for ‘weekend cottages’ thereby pricing locals out of the housing market and breaking up communities. This theme therefore became a very sensitive issue in my second book, Visions.
Pictures above Left – Right: A shot from ‘Spitting Image’ comedy; sterile, monochrome decor of the 80’s, (typical of Ben Hampton’s apartment); a stark contrast to these idyllic country cottages situated in a village in Kent.
For more information and links to the book itself, please visit http://samefacedifferentplace.co.uk