Spent yesterday at the Auckland Museum. It's long been one of my favourites, as its collection contains some real treasures of Oceanic art, and the Pacific Masterpieces room is one of my favourite rooms in any museum in the world. Sensational fish-hooks.
Also they have good swords.
But at present they have Vikings - the same exhibition as seen recently in Sydney at the National Maritime Museum, my spiritual home, although it seems a little smaller here.
But anyway weeks ago I had sketched out the plot for the new Viking book, which is the second in a new timeslip series - not much detail and really just knew how it fitted in with the overall narrative. Research so far had been sporadic, mostly because I start from what I already know and then research in bursts as required.
I stared intently at all the Viking displays, took a million notes, had a coffee and then wandered up to look at the swords in the Armoury. It's not the Tower, but it's a smart, small collection.
Stood gazing at something utterly unrelated (the detail on the guard of an 18th century infantry officer's sword) and then came the flash and clunk of a brain cranking slowly into gear.
By the time I got home from the museum I had the entire book clear in my mind and had started drafting.