In August I hit the ole' refresh button as I like to say. This involved taking Jax and some supplies and heading into deep woods. I have a map of where we went but it's unfinished... Maybe I'll add it in a later edit.
Darke and the Parandrus". Maybe the excerpt was inspired by this or something similar.
pg 115 "Darke cried out. The castoroccs below him had stood to their hind feet and were heaving against his tree with frighteningly efficient rhythm. The entire tree swayed like wheat in a breeze. Aedron looked to Tahkaan. Maybe he'll put that bow to use! Tahkaan, however, dangled by his arms as his tree was rocked about by the creatures. Growls and yells had succumbed to leaves rustling and branches cracking as the castoroccs focused all their energy on toppling the trees. The earth bulged beneath Darke’s tree as roots loosened and snapped free. There was no longer any mystery as to what had felled the other trees in the forest."Darke and the Parandrus"... And this exact forest is what inspired the pine forest in the book.
pg 187 "Brandal and Aedron made slow progress. Their surroundings changed gradually and they found themselves in a dense forest of pines. The floor was covered in a thick bed of straw. Here and there, patches of fern lay about like green blankets. Thin, grabby fingers of pine trees and dried out bushes caught their cloaks as they walked. Though Brandal did his best to cut a trail through the dense areas with his axe, he and Aedron were constantly nicked and scratched. Occasionally their path was blocked by great thickets of briars with dark purple leaves, and they had to backtrack to maneuver around. No sound of bird or critter existed. The bare pine trunks seemed to hold secrets and spy on them as they passed. Neither had spoken for a while when a shuffling of dried straw sounded nearby. Brandal stopped dead, motioning for Aedron to do the same. The sound ceased. Nothing moved except shadows as thin rays of afternoon sun pierced the gently swaying canopy. The air was still and heavy.
“I don’t like this, Brandal,” Aedron whispered."
Hopefully you can see why I'm inspired by the woods. I strongly recommend anyone seeking an imaginative boost to simply leave what you're used to and get out somewhere. I do it as often as possible (which isn't as often as I'd like).
I'll follow trails if I have to but I would much rather forge my own path.