These are some new concept sketches for a creature called a Rag-o-Roc. Originally they were large, bulky things with armor skin. But when I reached the part of the book where the first Rag-o-Roc makes it’s appearance, I realized they needed to be scarier but also I needed them to move quick. I wanted something spider-like. Something that gives you the sense you can’t escape it. Much like the creature in Alien.
This is the magic shop from early in the story. Although not a focal point of the novel, it’s critical in setting up many things, including the tone. So when I got to this part I decided to jot down some quick notes and images.
The shop is based on a real magic store I used to visit every Saturday. It was small, secluded, quaint and seemed to be right out of a novel (kind of ironic now). I imagined those visits in order to bring a vibrant reality to the shop in the book. Every smell, site and sound.
But the real store was much more than a reference for my book. I discovered it shortly after college. Before that, I always went to the well known magic store in the city. The kind that ships internationally and does a ton of business on the web. But this store was different. It was special.
The building was plain brick. The kind of storefront your eye ignores when you drive by. A small, engraved wooden sign hung above the door. This store was something right out of that alley in that novel about that wizard kid with the glasses.
But this store reeked of magic. It was jam packed with magical treasures and knowledge. Anytime the biggest names in magic were in the area, this is where they came. Just thinking about the store floods my head with ideas and characters. And a renewed excitement about writing this book.