One of the most rewarding parts of TTRPGing is Worldbuilding. Designing a campaign world is truly one of the most unique things about the hobby. Its a chemistry not unlike love - when you meet that perfect person for you and the sparks fly... well you don't need me to tell you that the sum is often more than the whole of its parts.
The same thing is very true with original worlds. When allowed to grow and expand through the interaction of 2 or more like-minded individuals, you can get something with a life of its own. So how do you plant that first seed, so it can flourish and grow?
Back in the dawn of the hobby (for me at least, talking about the late 70's here), those seed/ideas came from the books I hungrily devoured. Often DAW "Yellow Spine" books which were so cheap and fascinating at my local used bookstore.
Nowadays, however, my continued voracious appetite for cheap, plentiful pulp fantasy is enabled by my Kindle and the "evil empire" of Amazon, and additional inspiration is available a click of a button away on the now-everpresent internet.
Having read a few desert themed pulps recently, and having binge watched a series of documentaries about ancient Assyria, the Hittites, and Babylon, I thought it would be fun to make my first 5E campaign setting, I named it "Atheon", with an ancient Eastern Mediterranean flavor, blended with magic and perhaps some Dying Earth-style Sci-fantasy. Flying ships hovering over ziggurats while assassins battle tech-warlocks on the steps? Yes please!
Here's some google images I saved for inspiration:
Coming up in part 2, I'll discuss one of my favorite parts of campaign settings - Religion!