In the fictional world I've been building for my novel, there are semi-spiritual beings called syven (a Siberian term for "helping spirits" or familiars) that can be bound to a person's tattoo and later summoned in need. Here's how I imagine they look.
Insights from three critically-acclaimed authors of fantasy fiction about the intricacies of world building. World building is cool and fun, but it's anything but easy. It takes you to the heart of culture and human nature.