carry a piece of it around with you

I’ve written before about physical objects and their role in creative writing practice. One day when I was on a roll with my recent YA fiction project, I happened upon this in a neighborhood vintage shop:2013-10-23 18.44.57

2013-10-23 18.45.33I was unduly excited about my new-old syringe. I carried it around in my purse for three months and showed it to friends, most of whom had no idea what I was on about. I bought more of them on Ebay, falling in love especially with this one

made of blue glass(!)2013-10-23 20.34.18

Pretty, isn’t it? But more importantly, these medical artifacts offered me a material link between the book I was writing–its setting, its themes, its conflicts–and the real world. In the same way a souvenir can connect you to a travel experience you want to remember, the antique syringe helped me hang onto the imaginary world I was wrangling even when I had to close the laptop and make lunch. It helped me hook back into that world more quickly when I’d been away.

I wonder whether other writers have favorite talismanic objects, mementos or souvenirs from their trips into their fictional kingdoms?

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