Writing Magic

For those who haven’t read my manuscript, the world of Butterflies does not include a great deal of magic.  It is fantasy due to its setting – a world of my creation – not due to magical creatures or abilities.  This is for two reasons.  The first: magic is mostly unnecessary to the plot.  The second is bigger.  Magic is hard to write.

Magic is truly fantasy; it has to be created whole cloth from the author’s imagination.  Sure, many writers use previous stories as the foundation for their magic.  Elves, dragons, and fairies make frequent appearances in fantasy due to their traditional roots and their familiarity to readers.  Some authors have created excellent rule-based magic systems that provide an easy beginning for other writers.

I prefer to create my own system of rules for magic and how worlds work, but this is a big challenge.  I’m also a scientist, which requires finding a method of magic that reconciles with the way my mind reasons.  I’ve found a way to make some of it work, and other things I’m still developing.  Fortunately, the main character of my new story has instinctive use of her magic, making the need to establish full-blown rules less pressing for the creation of the novel.

And I get to return to the world of Butterflies for my serial story and the sequel I plan to write, relieving the need for magic to strain my brain.