Today I thought I'd share a few of my favorite YouTube channels that I like to go to for research and just general inspiration. As I've mentioned in the past, I'm someone who really likes to research, and that means figuring out what makes the most sense for situations. I wish I had something a little more Halloween-y (maybe tomorrow), but still, these are great resources for fantasy and general fiction writers alike.
So, first off, let's go with the channel that soothes my need for realism in fantasy, Shadiversity. Have you ever wondered why castles look the way they do? Or what weapon is best for a Minotaur to use? Or what the best medieval battle strategy would be to take down a dragon? You need Shadiversity.
The host is informative, relatable, and entertaining. He lays out why weapons and structures are made they way they are, how they would fall apart if they were constructed like they are in video games, and how you can find compromises for fiction. It's fascinating. If you've ever wondered why there are so many different kinds of swords, what the specific functions of each kind are, this is the guy. If you want your fantasy setting to be immersive, but also realistic, to feel like it could actually happen, you need to add Shadiversity to your list of subscriptions.
Next up, one I've mentioned many times before, Overly Sarcastic Productions. They do a few things, all of which I suggest watching. First off, they do literary reviews. If you've ever wanted an in-depth, entertaining, review of classic books (I suggest Mary Shelley's Frankenstein this time of year), this is perfect. The animation is amazing and funny, and most of all, Red breaks apart the themes and tropes utilized throughout the work, something important for would-be writers. She also does an amazing series I love called Trope Talk where she breaks down her favorite literary tropes, like The Five Man Band or We're Not So Different, You and I. Understanding how these tropes work lets you utilize them properly and can really, really improve your writing.
And of course, I can't mention OSP and Red's work without mentioning her partner, Blue. Blue takes the same care and attention, but applies it to actual history. Why is this important? The best stories come from history! If you understand how actual armies work, how kingdoms function, if makes your writing that much more rich and immersive.
So check these people out! Shadiversity! Overly Sarcastic Productions. Even the one cross-over episode they did. Go watch them! Learn! Write better!
And Don't Forget to be Awesome!
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.