The Writer's Toybox (link)
Welcome to the second part of what I hope (and my wife surely dreads) will become an ongoing chronicle of my chief writerly vice, an addiction to toys. Some I've found, some I've modified, but all of the ones I pick for this blog will have some sort of basis in books, writing, and my relationship to the two.
Today I give you:
Sumo! Yes Sumo Smash, by the same people who created Strollin' Bowlin', that portable game with the wind up bowling ball with orange shoes. I found this on sale at a bookstore which will remain unnamed and snatched it up. It is exactly as fun as it looks, which is very. Adjust their arms, wind them up, and let them bash each other out of the dohyo (ring). Grunt.
Now, it's all well and good that this little bit o' neatness came from a bookstore, but what the heck does it have to do with me as a writer? The answer, dear reader, is research. In the course of reading in preparation for a sequel to Ghost of Iga (available here, here, and here) I came across two books: Grand Sumo by Lora Sharnoff and Sumo: From Rite to Sport by Patricia Cuyler. The second book, which traced the religious and historical roots of Sumo, was more useful than the first, which is solely about modern Sumo, but both were fascinating reads. I think they're both out of print, but they're easy enough to get online. As for Sumo Smash, it's wind up, it's portable, and it's Sumo. Win to the 3rd power.