So I am mapping out a story, and I came to a part where I needed races. I decided to base them off of Italian folklore, as interesting as it is. How could I create creatures, races, and monsters based off Italian folklore, while still being original?
For creating variety of creatures, races etc., you need to do extensive research based on the region, time zone among other factors. You can take a look at what other authors have done; not to steal ideas; but to get a clear picture of what they have accomplished and what you can do better. Make sure that all these feel authentic and add more immersion to the storytelling. These creatures might be the real threat to your characters; brainstorm, you can do so much more!