Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Even More Inspirational Nonfiction

Here are the latest acquisitions for my own nonfiction shelves, which you might find inspirational or isntructional in gaming, particularly world-building:

Intoxication in Mythology by Ernest L. Abel: This might be useful as you’re brainstorming for your submission for James Maliszewski’s Petty Gods. In encyclopedic fashion, Abel briefly describes deities, substances, locales, and myths from all over the world related to intoxicants. This is sort of broadly defined, so you’ll likely find some entries (like Orion’s story) you wouldn’t have thought of as “drug-related.” It’s an interesting read, which makes me think there should be more subject-focused mythology books like this.

Lost Cities & Ancient Mysteries of the Southwest by David Hatcher Childress: This is shouldn’t be confused with a rigorously scientific archaeological work, and the travelogue nature of it means some sifting is required to find the gold, but it covers just about every weird lost civilization legend of the American Southwest I’ve ever heard of. If you enjoyed my posts on Lost Cities of the Grand Canyon, then this will probably be a welcome edition to your library.

The Tarzan Novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs by David A. Ullery: This bills itself as an illustrated reader’s guide to ERB’s Tarzan series, and that’s exactly what it is--and as such it chock full of world-building goodness from a master who knew how to balance world detail and story. Included is an overview of the Mangani (ape) language, and others from the tales, a section on lost cities, civilizations, and peoples, and a biographical sketch of Tarzan. You don’t have to be a Tarzan fan to find this stuff inspirational. In fact, if you can’t find half a dozen adventure seeds or cool things to swipe for your setting, then you haven’t read it.

6 comments:

Harald said...

Hehe, that's more or less what I expected from your shelves. Good stuff.

Trey said...

Hey, I've got pretty diverse bookshelves! But the above is probably reasonably representative. ;)

Ryan said...

I like your inspirational selection. I loved the EGR books as a kid and probably more so as an adult. When I saw the "inspirational" tag, I thought I'd find something like Three Insights by Tim Pond (which is pretty insightful, if not in an entirely different genre than what you posted about).

In any case, thanks for sharing these great picks.

Trey said...

Ha! No, I'd have any inspirational books of that type on any of my shelves. ;)

NetherWerks said...

Wow, these will make a nice Xmas-list...

Trey said...

Get those lists in early!