i deal with my feelings in a healthy way
and by healthy way i mean shoving them aside and spending hours on the internet doing basically nothing to keep my thoughts far far far away from them it’s foolproof yes
For the fantasy writers who want to include magic in their story.
So you have magic. But where did it come from? Do you know where it really came from while your characters have some other explanation? Is there a scientific explanation? A religious explanation? Do your characters not want to know? Are they looking for the origin? How long has magic been around?
If you’ve created a mythology and your characters don’t know how long magic has been around, the creation of magic or the gift of magic (whatever you want to call it) may be included within a myth or a creation story.
How much do your characters know about magic? How much a person knows about magic, how it works, its laws, its limitations, and its origins will depend on what they believe the explanation is, how they feel about magic, and how much the world knows about magic in general. Have your characters figured out exactly how magic works? Do they have theories and laws of magic? How long have these theories been in place?
If your characters have extensive knowledge on magic, there will probably be written records of this knowledge. If there are records, how available are they? Are there text books about it? Or is the magic incorporated within religious text? Or is it forbidden to know about magic?
There should be limits on the magic in your world. If there are no limits, everything will be too easy for your characters.
How often can they use magic? How much power do they have? Do they tire after using a lot of it? Does it deteriorate with age? Or does it become more powerful? Can someone gain more magic? Can they lose it? Are they able to kill? Can they only use a certain amount each day? Making a list of what magic can’t do can sometimes be more helpful than making a list of what it can do.
There will probably be laws about magic. What are yours? Who can use magic? Who cannot use magic? Is there an age requirement? Do you have to pass a test? Are there certain types of magic that are not allowed? Are there certain situations in which magic is not allowed?
How are the laws integrated into the government? Is there a separate government for magic? Or just a separate department? Or is magic integrated with other laws? Who makes the laws? Who enforces them? What are the punishments for breaking them?
Think back to the origins of your magic. This will affect how much of the population has magic. Who has magic? If they’re born with it, how is it passed on? Is it genetic? How many people have that gene? Is it learned? How many people are able to learn how to use magic? How many people actually know that magic exists?
Ranks and Orders:
What are magic users in your world called? Wizards? Witches? Warlocks? Sorcerers? Do any of these titles have negative connotations in your world? Is there a rank of magic users? Are there any offensive words that refer to magic users? Are special titles used (Sir, Master, Madame, etc.)?
Is there a hierarchy of magic users? How are they treated? How are they thought of? Are there different types of magic users who are seen as equal? What are those types? Can magic users move throughout the hierarchies and ranks of magic? Are there different levels based on power or skill? Do these users wear anything that signifies what their rank is?
There are several types of magic, some which may be put into the category of science in some worlds. What do your characters call magic? Here are some types of magic:
- Forms of Divination
- Stone/gem/crystal Magic
- Herb Magic
- Color Magic
- Power Primer: Elements
- Power Primer: Mind
- Astral Projection
- Candle Magic
- Tree Magic
- Moon Magic
Is magic even allowed to be used? With most things, there will be differing opinions on the morality or ethics. There may be a majority opinion on the morality or the opinions could be evened out in terms of quantity.
What about certain types of magic or certain people using magic? Is it unethical to use certain types of magic? Is it taboo or looked down upon to use certain magic? Is it immoral for religious leaders or government officials to participate in types of magic? Is it shameful to die from magic? Or an honor? Or is there nothing attached to magic and death?
Teaching and Learning:
If magic is widely used, it will need to be taught and learned. There may be some who are self-taught, but more organized magic systems and worlds will require some sort of training.
- Public Education: In this setting, the knowledge of how to use magic would be passed on from instructor to student in a public setting. This could be a school, just one class, a club, or any other gathering that would either be free or cheap so that it is available to the public. These settings are far less selective for who is allowed in and may allow everyone to participate. Where does this take place? In a school? A classroom? Another building? A special magic center? Outside?
- Private Education: This setting would be similar to the public one, but it would be more selective in who was allowed in, more secretive, and probably more expensive. These settings would be more ideal in worlds where magic is not widespread.
- Private Mentor: This would be someone who is hired specifically to teach one or a few students. This is often expensive. Does this setting take place in your world? Where does it take place? Someone’s house? A meeting place?
- Generational Knowledge: Knowledge of magic and how to use it can also pass down through generations. Do the old teach the young? Do parents teach their offspring in private? Do certain people of a community teach the younger ones?
- The Mentor: Who is the teacher? How do people become teachers and instructors? How are they chosen? Do the students choose their instructor? Are students assigned to one instructor? Is there more than one, each of which handle one type of magic?
- The Student: How old are students of magic? How long does it take them to learn? Do they choose to learn or are they forced? How competitive is it?
With most things, there will be a general attitude toward magic. What is that attitude? Is it welcomed? Feared? Respected? Do your characters talk about it openly, or is it whispered about in secret? How do people feel about magic users? Is there discrimination? Think back to how much of the population can use magic.
Now you come to one of the more important aspects of putting magic in your world: its use. Why do people use magic and what do they use it for? How is it used? Are there certain objects that can channel magic and make it more powerful, such as a wand? Are there appropriate settings for magic and inappropriate settings?
- Magical Objects: Can magic be applied to objects to give them magical connotations? How are these objects used? Are they popular? Can they be bought, or do magic users prefer to make their own? Are objects used to channel magic? Or can people use magic without them?
- Everyday Life: How does magic affect a person’s life? Short people may have no problem with grabbing high objects if they have the power of telekinesis. Glue may not be needed if a magic user can stick objects together with magic or mend a broken object. If they can conjure light, they may not need any lamps (electrical, gas, oil, etc.). What about jobs? Is a person able to do more in one day at work because of magic? Are they allowed to use magic?
- Transportation: Magical transportation is probably more effective than other forms of transportation, especially in a world with little technology. However, this can also be seen as lazy writing if your characters are able to teleport anywhere in the world at any time. Add some risks to this. Are they only able to travel like that once a day? Does it deplete their magic? Can only really powerful magic users do it? How is it learned? Are carts, wagons, and carriages pulled by magic or by animals? Or both? Are there portals? Are certain magical objects needed to transport through magic? Is there a possibility of ending up in the wrong place? What about flying?
- Communication: Communicating between long distances with magic is much easier than snail mail. How do your characters go about this? In one of my stories, the extremely wealthy and government officials are able to use tablet-like devices in which what they write on that tablet (it’s sort of like parchment wrapped over thick cardboard) will show up on another’s tablet thus allowing communication. Think of limitations for the communication, like how the tablets in my story are quite expensive. Who is able to communicate through magic? Are there many forms? Are some faster than others? Can symbols be used to communicate?
- War: Is magic used in war? Does the military have a special task force filled with magic users? Or does everyone use magic? How does the use of magic change battle tactics? Are there magical weapons?
- Describing Magic and Supernatural Powers
- Witches and Magic Systems
- Magic Prompt
- Writing Magic
- Types of Magic
- When Magic Goes Wrong
- Magic-Like Psychic Abilities
- Science and Magic
- Creative Uses of Magic
- Thoughts on Creating Magic Systems
- Defining the Sources, Effects, and Costs of Magic
- Coming Up With a Magic System
- Using Magic in Horror Fiction
- World Building Basics: Magic
- Let’s Talk About Magic
Land of fogs. Spokane morning.
If you’re a boy writer, it’s a simple rule: you’ve gotta get used to the fact that you suck at writing women and that the worst women writer can write a better man than the best male writer can write a good woman. And it’s just the minimum. Because the thing about the sort of heteronormative masculine privilege, whether it’s in Santo Domingo, or the United States, is you grow up your entire life being told that women aren’t human beings, and that women have no independent subjectivity. And because you grow up with this, it’s this huge surprise when you go to college and realize that, “Oh, women aren’t people who does my shit and fucks me.”
And I think that this a huge challenge for boys, because they want to pretend they can write girls. Every time I’m teaching boys to write, I read their women to them, and I’m like, “Yo, you think this is good writing?” These motherfuckers attack each other over cliche lines but they won’t attack each other over these toxic representations of women that they have inherited… their sexist shorthand, they think that is observation. They think that their sexist distortions are insight. And if you’re in a writing program and you say to a guy that their characters are sexist, this guy, it’s like you said they fucking love Hitler. They will fight tooth and nail because they want to preserve this really vicious sexism in the art because that is what they have been taught.
And I think the first step is to admit that you, because of your privilege, have a very distorted sense of women’s subjectivity. And without an enormous amount of assistance, you’re not even going to get a D. I think with male writers the most that you can hope for is a D with an occasional C thrown in. Where the average women writer, when she writes men, she gets a B right off the bat, because they spent their whole life being taught that men have a subjectivity. In fact, part of the whole feminism revolution was saying, “Me too, motherfuckers.” So women come with it built in because of the society.
It’s the same way when people write about race. If you didn’t grow up being a subaltern person in the United States, you might need help writing about race. Motherfuckers are like ‘I got a black boy friend,’ and their shit sounds like Klan Fiction 101.
The most toxic formulas in our cultures are not pass down in political practice, they’re pass down in mundane narratives. It’s our fiction where the toxic virus of sexism, racism, homophobia, where it passes from one generation to the next, and the average artist will kill you before they remove those poisons. And if you want to be a good artist, it means writing, really, about the world. And when you write cliches, whether they are sexist, racist, homophobic, classist, that is a fucking cliche. And motherfuckers will kill you for their cliches about x, but they want their cliches about their race, class, queerness. They want it in there because they feel lost without it. So for me, this has always been the great challenge.
As a writer, if you’re really trying to write something new, you must figure out, with the help of a community, how can you shed these fucking received formulas. They are received. You didn’t come up with them. And why we need fellow artists is because they help us stay on track. They tell you, “You know what? You’re a bit of a fucking homophobe.” You can’t write about the world with these simplistic distortions. They are cliches. People know art, always, because they are uncomfortable. Art discomforts. The trangressiveness of art has to deal with confronting people with the real. And sexism is a way to avoid the real, avoiding the reality of women. Homophobia is to avoid the real, the reality of queerness. All these things are the way we hide from encountering the real. But art, art is just about that."— Junot Diaz speaking at Word Up Bookshop, 2012 (via clambistro)
Okay I’ve seen tags similar to this numerous times since Tues. I have no choice but to comment on them now.
#i bet sam was in the inside watching helplessly and screaming for gadreel to stop #and right now he’s in just as much pain as dean is #but he can’t express it #because he’s trapped in…
dean + blue
as promised! apologies for my grainy webcam
//And if Adam and Lucifer are removed from the cage is the question I think. I mean timelines in Supernatural are confusing, their 2013 could last longer then ours.
I don’t think they are unless they touch hell and honestly, nobody really wanted Lucifer around. I still think end verse is a long shot.