What non-game media have most inspired your games and how?Initially my gaming inspiration came from a number of sources:
My mother would read me Greek myths as my bedtime stories. I was always fascinated by the minotaur and the labyrinth (I drew lots of mazes as a kid), and the tales of Jason and Hercules.
Conan the Adventurer:
This cartoon show was a big influence on my early D&D games, as it was running at exactly the same time as I started playing D&D. Even then I did realize that I couldn't lift things straight from the show, because my friends watched it too.
The Chronicles of Narnia:
Prior to this series I was not a reader. I could read, and did when I needed to, but never for pleasure. I was assigned to read The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe for school, and I fell in love with the series borrowing them from the library, and devoured them as quickly as I could lay my hands on them. This also corresponded with my introduction to D&D, and it lead my to consume as much fantasy as I could get my hands on.
Saturday afternoon movies:
You know the type; older action adventure, sword and sandal, biblical, and silly sci-fi movies. I spent way too much time watching them, and the sense of some of the over the top stuff that can go on in a game.
More currently my inspiration comes from some of the amazing art that I've seen both online and in real life, as well as the vast number of books I've read in the last 2 decades. Movies continue to be an inspiration. My exposure to music has exponentially expanded since I first got into D&D, and now the right track can set my mind alight with inspiration.