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Browsing all articles tagged with magic.

Trees in Fantasy – Part One: Trees as Symbols

Trees in Fantasy – Part One: Trees as Symbols 

Magic in fantasy, myth and legend usually occurs as a natural phenomenon, with its own place in the world of the story outside of what is created by mankind and civilisation. The connection between magic and nature has been a common theme in fantastical tales since the earliest days of storytelling. Trees, both individually and […]

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Worlds Within Worlds – Part Five: Qi and Fantasy

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Five: Qi and Fantasy 

Most people associate magic with strange symbols, chanting, and waving a wand around. Dusty books are usually in the picture, along with ritual circles or sacrifices. The mages themselves are usually old men with grey beards—frail but knowledgeable. I’ve already written about them. Compare that kind of magic and mage to qigong and (arguably) its […]

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Monthly Short Story Winner: Omens

Monthly Short Story Winner: Omens 

“An omen is a phenomenon that is believed to foretell the future, often signifying the advent of change. People in the ancient times believed that omens lie with a divine message from their gods. These omens include natural phenomena, for example an eclipse, abnormal births of animals and humans, and behavior of the sacrificial lamb […]

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Monthly Short Story Winner: Urban Fantasy

Monthly Short Story Winner: Urban Fantasy 

We haven’t had a genre as our monthly theme for quite a while, so this time entrants wrote us a nice, little urban fantasy story. This means that story should take place mainly in a city. Any city, any time? No. To make it a bit more specific, they had to stay on our world […]

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Worlds Within Worlds – Part Three: Magic Warfare

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Three: Magic Warfare 

Fallout taught fans that war…war never changes. Military historians, however, argue otherwise. Case in point: the stirrup. Before firearms dominated the battlefield, it’s generally agreed that the stirrup was the most important innovation in warfare for a couple centuries. Fans of the Rohirrim will recognize why: cavalry is fast and maneuverable, and the stirrup allows […]

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Magic, Mutants, and Machines: The Nifty Bits Reviews

Magic, Mutants, and Machines: The Nifty Bits Reviews 

Are you tired of reading lengthy, critical reviews that leave you even more confused about what to read next? Daniel Potter’s Nifty Bits – brief summaries of his past month’s reading – are the perfect remedy! Steal the Sky by Megan E. O’Keefe is a prelude to a high skies adventure-story. The plot, world, and economy […]

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Is This Normal Around Here?

Is This Normal Around Here? 

So you get home to your enchanted castle, hand your coat to the golem butler who waits by the door, tut sadly at Markus; the caretaker who’s trying to fill a light globe and letting all the fairies escape, then you head to the kitchen where your goblin chef has an entire pig roasting on […]

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Potions, Alchemy, & Apothecaries: Inspirations from the Real World

Potions, Alchemy, & Apothecaries: Inspirations from the Real World 

A witch hunched over a bubbling cauldron; a reclusive alchemist searching for the secret to eternal life; a hooded figure procuring a poison from a shady apothecary… While these are classic images from fantasy and storytelling, they are rooted in history. People tried as witches often “confessed” to making potions and salves that caused others […]

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Fantasy Medicine – Part One: Healthcare, Magical and Mundane

Fantasy Medicine – Part One: Healthcare, Magical and Mundane 

Fantasy, whether epic, high, or sword-and-sorcery, would not be very exciting if the characters were as susceptible to death and disability as we are in the real world. The truth is, it takes much less than a broken leg or severed hamstring to render a human useless for battle and adventuring. How about a back […]

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New Models for Magicians

New Models for Magicians 

In many fantasy stories, magicians often follow one or two traditional models. Many are often portrayed as guides or teachers that assist the protagonist. Often this mentor is described as an old man, with a long, white beard. They wear robes and carry walking staffs. Merlin and Gandalf cast long shadows over the genre. Alternatively, […]

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Expecto Patronum Named Best Harry Potter Spell

Expecto Patronum Named Best Harry Potter Spell 

What!? You didn’t know that it was Harry Potter Book Night last night? You didn’t make it to one of the 10,500+ parties scattered across the UK? Missed out on the Butterbeer, cake and various wizarding activities? Well, as part of the celebrations, Bloomsbury Books invited readers to use Social Media to vote on their favourite spell from […]

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iPods in Narnia

iPods in Narnia 

Okay, so there weren’t iPods in Narnia…but there are in ancient Egypt. Sort of. If you read Rick Riordan’s Kane Chronicles. A lot of fantasy writers find it tricky to balance the more fantastical elements of their world with the myriad of cool, real-world gadgets their characters can access these days. Riordan is one of […]

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