• What's great about symbols, what a writer can do with them is provide a really vivid, interesting image, and the reader will do the rest of the work. That's always been very interesting to me. Like if I just introduce the storks, I don't have to say what they mean because the reader will do that. And if I bring in the dark history of the region, other trends come up, for example how in ancient Egypt they are associated with the souls of the dead. You can surprise yourself by introducing an image and then see how developing the story fills it with meaning that is suddenly new.