Kevin Hearne: Five Things I Learned Writing Ink & Sigil

Al MacBharrais is both blessed and cursed. He is blessed with an extraordinary white moustache, a gratitude for craft mixed drinks– and a most unique magical talent. He can cast spells with amazingly captivated ink and he uses his gifts to protect our world from rogue minions of various pantheons, specifically the Fae.

When his most current apprentice, Gordie, turns up dead in his Glasgow flat, Al discovers proof that Gordie was living a secret life of crime. Now Al is forced to play detective– while avoiding real detectives who are questioning why death appears to constantly follow Al. Examining his apprentices death will take him through Scotlands wonderful underworld, and hell require the assistance of a mischievous hobgoblin if hes to make it through.

Anyone who hears his voice will begin to feel an inexplicable hatred for Al, so he can just communicate through the composed word or speech apps. As his individual life collapses around him, he commits his life to his work, all the while trying to crack the secret of his curse.

Glasgow is an exceptional city

Edinburgh and the Highlands get a lot of attention when folks consider visiting Scotland– and for excellent reason– but Glasgow has layers, like onions and trolls and parfaits. Its the third-largest city in the UK behind London and Birmingham, but far more affordable. It has universities, plural; a 37-acre Necropolis filled with creepy Victorian-era gravesites and mausoleums for all the goth vibes you need; numerous football teams to cheer (and fight) for; an eldritch organ in the Kelvingrove Art Gallery & & Museum; master distillers of whisky and gin that are the envy of the world; and it utilized to be that all the New Worlds tobacco was delivered to Glasgow initially and from there to the rest of the European continent. That was a lot of money and cancer. It was quite the industrial hub in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and the shipbuilding industry was substantial for a long period of time, but when it collapsed a couple of years earlier, the city population basically halved from 1.2 million to 600k– part of what makes real estate more sensible there. Now theres a lot of finance and tech things taking place in Glasgow, and the city has this terrific richness of varied architecture and neighborhood owing to its long history coexisting alongside modern-day structures. Generally its a wonderful city in which to set an urban dream, since basically anything can take place there.

There are thousands of recipes for ink and lots of them are flammable

Unexpected fires and residential or commercial property damage were so typical in the old days that inkmakers had to do their thing outside city walls on a calm day in case shit went bad. Without warming the oil adequately ahead of time, the ink would dry too gradually, soak up oxygen, and polymerize like rubber.

The prevalent use of bugs (like cochineal) and squishy ocean animals for pigments was particularly unexpected to me. A small fraction of the research study I did wound up being used in the book; it was a gigantic lovely bunny hole that runs as deep background for whatever Al does, and some of it that I didnt use for the first book will likely find a location later on in the series.

Public transportation is quite rad

Ive lived in locations without a good public transport system most all my life, so whenever Im in a city that has it, Im easily impressed. Glasgow has a little train that circles around the city core, but likewise has a rail and bus system that enables people to get around pretty well without an automobile– which is what we did as tourists. Most impressively, routine routes get you out of the city to lovely wee towns that usually provide an old stone church, a pub, great deals of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had actually been there when, which is most likely true since its not a massive country and those men got around. The relative ease of navigating both rural and metropolitan locations without owning a lorry showed me that my lead character didnt need a car. Taxi cabs and hitchhiking would pick up the slack whenever public transport and a stretch of the legs couldnt handle the journey.

Haggis is freaking tasty

For reals. And I enjoy neeps and tatties too. It gets represented as this stuff you only consume on an attempt, and yeah, I confess I recoiled the very first time I tried it since it had actually been developed in my head as A Gross Thing You Will Only Try Once, but damn, I liked it. A lot. Had it as often as I might while I was there, since it is not extensively available beyond Scotland.

Now, as a counterpoint: I am not a fan of black pudding, due to the fact that I tried that too and it did unkind things to my taste buds. Super delighted for everybody who likes it! You can have mine. Ill trade you for your haggis. Dang, I really require to find some where Im at now. I miss it.

The accents are pure dazzling

A lot of Americans familiarity with the Scottish accent originates from Shrek and other home entertainment, however invest some time in Scotland and youll acknowledge that there are a vast array of accents throughout the country. The Glaswegian (or Weegie) accent is its own thing, however fifty miles away in Edinburgh you get an entirely various sound. Because the Weegie accent and dialect is unique from other areas of Scotland, I needed a professional reader from Glasgow to have a look at the manuscript ahead of time and make corrections. One word that had to go that people often associate with Scotland: Laddie. I was told that word may get used in the nation occasionally, but was not actually a thing that Weegies state. Calling somebody a jammy bastard has absolutely nothing to do with jam or even pajamas.

I didnt try to replicate everything you hear– that would be a gargantuan task– but I did choose a couple of words and phrases to consistently render the method a Weegie might state them to offer the flavor of the language while (hopefully) keeping it easy to check out. Obviously, you can listen to the audiobook told by Luke Daniels and appreciate the accents that method.

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Kevin Hearne hugs trees, animals doggies, and rocks out to heavy metal. He also believes tacos are a quite cool concept. He is the author of A Plague of Giants and the New York Times bestselling The Iron Druid Chronicles series.

Kevin Hearne: Website|Instagram|Twitter

He can cast spells with amazingly enchanted ink and he utilizes his gifts to safeguard our world from rogue minions of numerous pantheons, specifically the Fae.

Glasgow has a little train that circles around the city core, however also has a rail and bus system that allows people to get around quite well without a cars and truck– which is what we did as tourists. The majority of impressively, routine paths get you out of the city to charming wee villages that usually offer an old stone church, a club, lots of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had been there when, which is probably true since its not a gigantic country and those dudes got around.

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Now theres a lot of finance and tech stuff happening in Glasgow, and the city has this fantastic richness of different architecture and neighborhood owing to its long history existing side-by-side alongside contemporary buildings. A tiny portion of the research study I did wound up being used in the book; it was an enormous charming bunny hole that operates as deep background for whatever Al does, and some of it that I didnt utilize for the very first book will likely find a location later on in the series.

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