Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Get Inspired - Images

I do hope to actually play one day.
For someone who has never played Dungeons and Dragons I have a pretty sizable collection of source books. To me these books are a goldmine of inspiration, the bestiaries especially. When I’m feeling like I’m in a creative rut just thumbing through the monster manuals sometimes will get the gears turning again as I study the images and see possibilities. These books are full of awesome, terrifying creatures and landscapes which makes them, in my opinion, a fantastic set of reference guides, and not just for science fiction/ fantasy authors. Some of the Eldritch abominations in the new compendiums could make even veteran Lovecraft readers uncomfortable at the sight of them.

Alongside music, the other big gun in my creative arsenal is my ability to draw inspiration from images. I’m a pretty visual guy, I learn visually and often when I write it comes as if I’m a character in the story living and watching the events transpire, so a big part of story-boarding for me is getting inspired from images that match the setting, and tone of the story. Once I have those images for references it’s easy for me to leave a session then come back and use the images I gathered to put me back in the same place tonally.

I say all this to justify hours of browsing Deviantart as part of my research phase. Storytelling for me a lot of the time starts with the seed of the plot, but takes root in moody soils. To get the tone of the story just right I search for images that look the way the story feels to me. When I have that in place the idea grows like a wildflower and the book nearly writes itself.

When I put the last punctuation mark on the last page of the story I like to reward myself and indulge the would-be graphic artist in me by making a mock up cover for the book. I tell myself I’m making a reference for the cover artist but really it’s all about spending more time scouring stock image sites and putting together something that I feel represents the overall feeling of the story. Luckily for me and for my readers I’m not a cover artist, just take a look at my crude mock ups next to the professionally designed covers.
My awful cover attempt.

Flowers cover by Karri Klawiter


It hurts to look at. Scroll down already!

Tea Time cover once again by the talented Karri Klawiter

See you Tomorrow as the Get Writing Challenge continues with Get Inspired - Media!

Links to all entries in the Get Writing Challenge:
Get Inspired – Images (Current Page)

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