Whenever I turn in a manuscript to an editor or publisher, and the project is basically complete from my end, I do a final clean-up of my research links and material. Lately I’ve been thinking that people might be interested in seeing a bit more of my process, and how I do brainstorming and free association to generate ideas for characters, settings and themes.
This, for example, is Konjo Oni, a character I recently created for P U P P E T L A N D™, a storytelling game with strings in a grim world of make-believe. Konjo Oni is a warrior marionette from Japan, and this real world puppet was my visual reference for the character. The real puppet is a theater-quality puppet from the Meiji Period, 1868-1912. It was put up for auction by the Zacke Gallerie, and comes from a Viennese private collection.
In the scenario I created for Puppetland, Konjo Oni is known as “The Flower Demon”. The back of his head looks significantly different than the real puppet seen here. But I’ll let that be a surprise.
The upshot of this post is simply that I take great joy in writing, and one of the things I love most about my writing is the inspiration and pleasure that comes from my research. I find the real world around me endlessly fascinating and magical. And I try to share that feeling with my readers.