I’ve been hard at work on my second novel! I’ve almost finished the chapter that I needed to add. It’s been a lot of fun writing it. It involves magic and fight training! So of course, now I have to blog about my favorite subject: Magic.
Everyone, I belief, is born with a little bit of magic. It is buried deep inside our brains and there it sits, waiting for you to tap into. As a child, we all discover our own magic one way or another. Some children learn to fly, their little legs racing across the playground with their arms stretched forward, ripping through the air, imagining to be Superman. Others become race car drivers as their sibling pushes them across the floor in a laundry basket. For me, magic began with the belief in people such as Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy. A parents first answer to the question, “How do they do that?” is always, “Magic.”
Hearing that word explained for the first time opened my eyes to a whole new world, one where I could do or be anything I wanted. Magic implanted itself into my imagination, and from there I began building worlds of my own. Early on it was childish worlds such as a platform of wood becoming a ship that was being attacked by pirates. I would inform all the kids around me of this and then give them their parts to play in my imaginary story. We would spend hours like this, fake battling and repairing the ship. Things were so simple then. As I grew older I found music and was inspired to create plays out of whole CD’s. I think the first CD I created a play to was Disney’s Fantasia. I even held auditions for the special parts. Eventually though, I grew up and didn’t have a bunch of kids that would volunteer to follow my silly stories. So I turned to the one thing I can always rely on…paper. Words always flow like water for me when there’s a little bit of pressure and a blank piece of paper.
I digress. Magic. Just the very word brings a smile to my face. Influences like Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, World of Warcraft, Everquest, even Barney, come to mind. I don’t think I could live in a world that had no knowledge of magic. I wish even more that I could visit some of the worlds that have been dreamed up. My obsession with all things magic has finally paid off though. My Trilogy is full of magic. In my written world, I am able to conjure things, use the elements, see into the future, and even dabble in dark magic. And the best part of my world, is creating spells. Which brings me back to the point of my blog. Magic. Oooooohhh…say it again. Magic.
I wanted to share with you the four steps I use to create spells. One thing you must remember as an author is: YOU ARE THE CREATOR. YOU HAVE THE CONTROL TO CREATE SOMETHING NEW! If you can keep that in mind, then you can create something never read before! Don’t hold yourself back to thinking you have to be like authors before you. There is no box!
Step One: The first thing I decide when creating spells is, what language will I use? A made up language? Latin? Greek? It’s up to you. It’s your story. You can even take a language and twist it a bit to suit your style. There is a great tool called Google Translate that will take an english word and turn it into many different languages for you. You can use what they give, or spin-off of the words they give, changing letters here and there to create your own. And if you are really good at imagining, then you may be able to create words on your own with just your imagination! Once you have decided that, you are ready to move on to the next step.
Step Two: Now you must come up with your basic rules. Will they be able to conjure and eat food? Can a spell move them from place to place? Do they need ingredients in order to create spells like witches use? You have to create your boundaries for your characters. Don’t make it too easy for them. Part of the fun of reading, are watching the characters overcome or even succumb to the obstacles you’ve created. Just because they use magic doesn’t mean they should be able to do anything.
Step Three: So you have your language and your base rules. Now you must think of what type of magic they will use. Will it be elemental? Light and Dark? Witchcraft? Druid? Will you have multiple races, each with different forms of magic? Will you take a few different types and mix them, making them your own style? There has to be some cohesion to the magic you are using. You don’t want to look at it like the kitchen sink. Make sure it makes sense to your story. You don’t want it to become unrealistic. It will pull the reader from your world. If you aren’t sure, research. Read up on different magic-using races. Get a feel for what you like. Priests, Monks, Orcs, Goblins, Elven people, Shadow walkers, something not yet thought of? So much to dabble in. Once you choose your magic style, it will make it easier on you to write your story.
Step Four: Now you’re at the point where you’re ready to begin creating the actual spells. This is the fun part! I create a new word document to keep my spells on so I can keep track of everything. You may want to categorize it. Defensive spells. Offensive spells. If you choose elemental, separate the elements. Dark magic. Death spells, ect. This will be your go-to guide when you are writing your story. It will be there when you need some spells to get through a scene and can’t remember what to use. Start with thinking of common spells needed such as throwing someone backwards or disarming someone. You have your language chosen, so think of the words you want to be chanted or said when the spell is thrown. Try to make the word sound similar to the action so the reader can have an automatic response to it. Then, write it in your spell book along with a definition so you can remember it later on. I would try to think of as many different scenarios as possible and what type of spells my characters could use to get out of a sticky situation, or even use when stuck in a sticky situation. Then I just create. Once they are written down, it allows me to focus on the actual story and not have to stop and think of new things which holds up the writing process.
So there it is. As I’ve said in blogs before, everyone is different and creates differently. This is how I’ve done it. This is what’s easy for me. Will it help you? I hope so. Even if you are only able to use a few of my steps. There are so many ways to use magic to vamp up your story. It’s intoxicating to read and even more addicting to write about. It’s what we all wish we could do. So now I set you free to begin the process of creating new spells! As for leaving you with a question, how about, if you are a writer, share your steps on how you create magic within your story. If you are a reader, share how magic affects you when reading.
That being said, Echelon out ♥