My Current Writing Research Sources

I thought that it might be interesting to show the type of books and sources I use for research and to up my writing game. These are not all of the books and sources I use, mind you. But they do give an idea of what I’m referring to at the moment.

The Ruon Chronicles/The Knowledge Stones

The Knowledge Stones is rapidly nearing its final scene, and now I’m starting to worry that everything that needs to pay off, won’t. Which I guess is a good thing as I will then make sure that they do pay off instead of just writing “The End”.

I bought The Last Fifty Pages by James Scott Bell over the weekend as an extra reference to read through before writing the very end of the book. The main reason for this is that part of the book was written through pantsing, and I don’t want the ending to feel like that.

While I was at it, I also got 27 Fiction Writing Blunders by the same author– because sometimes you need someone to call you out on something stupid that you’re busy doing in your writing and not realising you’re doing — this one I’ve yet to start on, though.



The world of Porselein has more of a Renaissance feel to it than Ruon Chronicles and, to that end, I have to read up a lot about the period. The first book I turned to was The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy by Jacob Burckhardt; a book I’d read (okay, scanned) during Literary Theory at varsity and about three years ago found at a library sale. (This book was first published in 1860, so there are more than enough free versions on the internet and Kindle if you’re interested.)

I also downloaded The History of the Renaissance, edited by Ross Johnson and Manners, Customs and Dress During the Middle Ages and During the Renaissance Period by P.L. Jacob (both from Kindle). These three books should give me a good place from which to extend my research. Luckily I had known quite a bit about the Renaissance already, so it wasn’t that I started writing Porselein completely blind!

Next is Porcelain Through the Agesby George Savage; a 1954 book that I found at an antique shop after reading about it somewhere else (on the internet … that’s as much as I can remember). It was quite a find and, even though it has some foxing, etc. I bought it with glee. One of those serendipitous moments! 

I’m still busy with The White Road: A Pilgrimage of Sorts by Edmund de Waal; which I also bought on Kindle. You can read more about this book over here.

When it comes to audiobooks, I’ve listened to The Rival Queens: Catherine de’ Medici, Her Daughter Marguerite de Valois, and the Betrayal That Ignited a Kingdom by Nancy Goldstone — although this one wasn’t started as much for Porselein as me being curious! Some elements might find their way into Porselein, though.


By Carin Marais

Bibliophile, writer of speculative fiction, non-fiction, and maybe-fiction, language practitioner, doer of stuff.

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