One of my favorite sources for what's weird in real life, Boing Boing, features an article that resonates with me. According to Smithsonian Magazine smuggling of narwhal tusks has landed a couple of Americans in hot water.
The scene that was the inspiration for my most recent story, "The Dubious Apotheosis of Baskin Gough," centers around a narwhal in the foyer of a grand home. After Keith Grassmick, the artist behind Aqua Dementia (shown below), gave me his blessing to base a story on his painting, it took me over two years to come up with a story in which that scene could occur. At one point I did a heap of research on narwhals since research is more interesting than actual writing sometimes.
Anyway, I just returned the edited proofs of that story to Cold Fusion Media for the forthcoming ARCANE II anthology, and seeing narwhals in the news seemed serendipitous, except that the ones in the story were dead.
Oh, and as there is some discussion in the story about eating the flesh of the elusive unicorn of the sea, here is another article about eating narwhal "meat."