"Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes." ~Publishers Weekly review of Eolyn

"The characters are at their best when the events engulfing them are at their worst." ~Publishers Weekly review of High Maga

Monday, June 7, 2010

Primitive Magic

My posts are going to slow down for the next couple of weeks. I’m on vacation right now, in a place with little internet & email access – and very happy on both accounts!

In my novel EOLYN, I never lay out in a single passage how the people of Moisehén perceive their magic. Rather, the reader learns about different types of magic as the story progresses, and occasionally I insert a legend that speaks to the history of magic, as for example in chapter 5, the Origin of Magic (the topic of my May 27 post). So one of the things I’d like to do with my blog is tell you a little about magic in Eolyn’s world. The focus of today's post is Primitive Magic.

In the tradition of Moisehén, Primitive Magic is considered the root of all magic. It is the oldest form of magic, the first to animate the hearts of men and women. It is also the least understood of all magic, and many of its forms – such as love and desire – remain under the exclusive (and sometimes infuriating!) control of the Gods. Unlike Advanced Magic, which is learned, Primitive Magic is considered innate to the human experience. For this reason, it cannot be denied to women - or any other class of people in Moisehén, for that matter. While women can lawfully engage in activities considered Primitive Magic - such music and dance – their open participation became limited during the purges that followed the War of the Magas. At that time, association with magic of any sort often resulted in accusations of the practice of High Magic, which in turn led to persecution, torture and death on the pyre.

In my last post, I mentioned that the forests of Talamanca – which inspired Eolyn’s childhood home in the South Woods – have a special kind of energy that I like to call ‘magic’. Much in the same way, dance and music carry a kind of magic for me (more on that later!), so I wanted them to be part of the magic of Eolyn’s world, as well.

Today's image is Pieter Brueghel's classic painting, "The Wedding Dance".