Friday, March 11, 2011

Achievements, News, and “Magic” with the FFW

(An 8.9 magnitude earthquake has hit Japan, causing a massive tsunami. Prayers for them.)

It’s been a busy week in the blogging world!

Yvonne at Welcome to my World of Poetry hit 300 followers this week. She’s an amazing poet and I’m thrilled 300 other people besides me think so as well.

Nebular at Cinemarvellous just celebrated his birthday! He runs an excellent movie review site (and does a far better job than me) so if you are a movie buff, you’d benefit from following Cinemarvellous.

Talli Roland’s new book came out in paperback this week! Go show her some love. And tell Talli she’s the cutest Canadian-Brit ever. (This has been verified.)

Don’t forget the A to Z Challenge! We’re over 400 participants and cruising toward 500. And Monday I have a treat – the A to Z master himself, Arlee Bird at Tossing It Out will be here to share how the Challenge began. (He’ll be hosting a gaming blogger that day – now that’s cool!) More Challenge tips to follow next week.

And Roland Yeomans of Writing in the Crosshairs has been touring this week for his new book, so hopefully you’ve caught some of the stops.

Today is another edition of Fantastic Friday Writers! I invite your to check out my Fantastic Friday Writers partners - Elizabeth Mueller, Anastasia V. Pergakis, J. D. Brown, and Deirdra Eden Coppel - for their take on this subject. I’m sure it’s better than mine!

Magic and Magic Rules

Nothing like asking the science fiction writer about magic! Here’s the short and sweet: The cool thing about magic is you can make up any rules. The sky’s the limit! But those rules must be consistent in your world’s setting.

If I were writing fantasy, these would be some of my rules:

Good and evil magic must be balanced

Objects can be imbued with magical powers but can’t be in of themselves magic.

Magic cannot be used to force people to do things against their will.

Magic is an innate ability to be trained - one can’t learn it just by studying magic

Real warlocks have three nipples. Just kidding! Wanted to see if you were still paying attention.

So, what are some of your magic rules?

Gotta run - I got a date at 5 o'clock with a new iPad 2!

81 comments:

Nebular said...

Thanks for mentioning my birthday and my blog, Alex. I really appreciate it! ;)

Congrats to Yvonne and her 300 army :)

Congrats to Talli Roland, too. She's definitely super-cute! :)

I personally love sci-fi and fantasy equally as much. Alex, Have you ever considered writing a fantasy book?

Anne Gallagher said...

You cannot make someone fall in love with you by using magic, but when you fall in love, that creates its own magic.

Gail said...

All magical news!

Liz Fichera said...

If I had magic rules, I'd have to insist that I'd be allowed to fly.

Happy Friday!

Pk Hrezo said...

Ha ha! Funny guy! I'm in the "magic" process right now... dreaming up what will work and what won't. SO much fun!
Happy weekend!!!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Nebular, you're welcome. And I have thought about writing fantasy. Always dug Terry Brooks' work.

Anne, yes it does!

Happy Friday everyone!

Arlee Bird said...

Lot's of news in the blogging community. That Magic 500 number for the A to Z Challenge is on its way. Will we reach 600?
I think it's almost as big of a thrill for me when Yvonne gets new followers as when I do--go Yvonne!

Lee
Tossing It Out

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

If wish I had the magical ability to become invisible. How useful would that be?? Have a great weekend! :D

Old Kitty said...

...and if you've got four nipples??

Magic must also include a cat. Or a familiar of some sort. But certainly a cat.

:-)

Take care
x

Ted Cross said...

In my fantasy novel no one born on the planet can overtly use magic, thus making my group of scientists who arrived from Earth the only ones who eventually become wizards. There is no such thing as good or bad magic; there is simply magic. It's how one uses it that determines the goodness or badness.

li said...

Wow, you got me there for a minute. I thought I'd have to give up my pursuit of a career in magic due to the 3 nipple thing. Phew!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Lee, it can happen! And really happy for Yvonne.

Nicole, I'd like that one.

Kitty, then you're a magical cat with that many nipples!

Ted, i knew you'd have set rules.

li - gotcha!

Matthew MacNish said...

For me magic is natural, there is no good or evil to it. Or, at least that's how it works in one book. Not sure if it would always be that way.

Sarah McCabe said...

I would say that there also has to be a natural reason for all the rules. Rules with no reasons behind them always strike me as more like the rules of a board game than of a believable world. I like magic that is simply a natural part of the way the world works, like the law of gravity but more interesting. That's why I'm basing my world's magic on the scientific/philosophical theories of Plato and Aristotle.

Budd said...

I like OSC's take. Magic had to cost the user something. I believe he used life. So the person could use very small magic with little concequences, and a bigger spell would take a year or so, but a really big, powerful spell could kill the caster or make it so that they could not cast again for fear of dying.

Karen Walker said...

Do what you will, but harm none.
Karen

salarsenッ said...

Thanks for all the links. I will keep the people in Japan in my thoughts and prayers. So scary...

Fantasy rule: if there's a weird dog in the story, he/she must morph into some other creature. LOL

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sarah, that's a smart way to do it.

Budd, that's strong rule!

Salarsen, I like that!

Liza said...

Enjoy your I-Pad 2.

iZombie said...

great updates... and i can do some magic... watch as i turn this car into a garage...
wizzo, want to be.

have a great weekend and the ipad 2...

and warlocks do have three nipples, but that is a secret. didn't think i was paying attention..hmmm!
jeremy

Carol Kilgore said...

Ah, I wondered if you would get v.2. Are you going to write fantasy next?
Happy Weekend!

gideon86 said...

I have two of the three comment in my fantasy...

A familiar, who happens to be a long eared, large, black rabbit.... and yes he is a lot more that he seems.

And I agree, Alex, magic should be honed and practiced. Why should they have it easy? We have to hone and practice our craft.

Michael

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Lots of news and thanks for the mention. I am fast approaching my
6ooth poem so with a bit of luck this time next week I shall be there.

Yvonne.

Jules said...

If you were making it up, then what was that third bump on my warlocks chest? :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Summer Ross said...

That third was hilarious! LOL! I'm getting excited for the a-z challenge! I'm not sure what my rules of magic might be- perhaps as long as it is attached to the body- parts can disappear- like wings :)

The Old Silly said...

Some great shout outs in this post. And I like your Magic Rules!

mshatch said...

In my witchy tale only those born of a witch family can perform magick and even then you might be born with no talent, some, or a lot. And talents vary, like talking to the dead, Summoning, Artifice, and Knowing, to name a few. Magick also requires energy from somewhere, including yourself, so you better be careful not to suck yourself dry.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jeremy, you get a gold star!

Carol, I've toyed with the idea.

Michael, exactly!

You're welcome, Yvonne.

Jules, maybe I wasn't...

Mshatch, you know your rules.

Katherines Corner said...

Three nipples,....you crack me up! I don't have any magic rules or tricks but it would be awesome to twitch my nose or blink my eyes and be able to heal.

have a great weekend. Hugs

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

Good rules, Alex. I'd add: Only three-nippled warlocks can saw a woman in half and bring her back together. If the magician was a two-nippled warlock, she'll have to figure out how to pull herself together. (This could be a whole new fantasy series.)
xoRobyn

Charles Gramlich said...

My main rule of magic is that it must cost at least as much as it gains the person.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Katherine, shall I call you Samantha now?

Robyn, you are on to something!

Good rule, Charles.

Sylvia Ney said...

Great blog, and funny too! I've actually used magic (in my stories) to try to force someone to do something against their will, but love (the victim of the spell's love for another - sister, spouse, friend etc.) will cause the spell to backfire when that loved one is hurt by the spell. I really like Charles' suggestion: cost and gain are equal - wonderful. I just found your site. If you get a chance, please visit my new blog at: http://writinginwonderland.blogspot.com/

Holly Ruggiero said...

I like your warlock rule! I think cats should shot lasers. Oh wait, that’s already been done.

Melissa said...

Three nipples sounds like a very typical rule. Haha.

I can't give away mine cause I'm super secretive about it.

I agree with your rules for the most part though.

Vancouver was under a tsunami threat this morning but we're GOOD now! The threat has passed, thank goodness.

Anne R. Allen said...

Three nipples, huh? So That's Charlie Sheen's problem!

The Golden Eagle said...

I definitely agree with the fourth rule! One of mine is never create new creatures if they're just going to breathe fire and act like brutes . . . as so many do.

Have a great weekend!

Anastasia V. Pergakis said...

Okay the warlock line , I had to read twice. The first time I was like "Wait, he did not just say that, did he?" LOL Great rule! You mentioned one of the key things for magic in fantasy in my opinion and that's consistency! Awesome post.

Lydia K said...

What?!? Is the third nipple magical? How on earth does that fit into the laws of magic?

You are funny. But now I have this vision stuck in my head, thank you very much.
:P

M Pax said...

Do warlocks pierce all three? lol

Have fun with your ipad2

Stephen Tremp said...

Speaking of warlocks, I think Charlie Sheen is a wanna be, kind of like the guy who takes a couple karate classes and thinks he's a ninja.

The Words Crafter said...

Does that mean Chandler is a warlock?!!

I hope you get your ipad. Stores are only stocked with 2 to 4 of them, which is crazy.

Yep, praying for Japan....

If I wrote about magic, there would have to be balance, like you said. I cut my fantasy teeth on Terry Brooks books. Have you ever read Dragons of Autumn Twilight? Love 'em.

Jeffrey Beesler said...

My magic rules would include some laws about curfew, learner's permits, and no attempts to end the world on Sunday unless super villain has a note from his or her mother okaying such destruction on that day.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Hey Sylvia! Nice to have you here.

Holly, you can do it again.

Melissa, that's good! Glad you are safe.

Anne- touche!!!

Thanks, Anastatia!

Lydia, glad I could fill your brain...

M Pax, I would think so.

Stephen, Sheen is no Ninja! That is blasphemy.

Words, Brooks is my favorite fantasy writer!!!!

Jeffrey - learner's permits? You run a strict magical world.

Dempsey Sanders said...

great news, and sad news obviously to hear about Japan. Loved your magic rules, (warlocks with three nipples had me giggling) ,
Not sure about magic rules, but if i could do magic I would -

cast a spell so my partner takes less than an hour in the shower especially when im late for work,

cunger up a magic potion so that my neighbours can fall asleep at a decent time of night rather than hearing them at 3am arguing and then having make up sex

make my dog hate my plants as he seems to love them especially my rather expensive orchid!

And cast a spell on the powers at be at CW so they can hurry up the Smallville storyline rather than pis*ing me off and having another month break.

:D x

N. R. Williams said...

I think that in HP people were forced to do things against their wills with magic. No wonder all those nasty wizards I know have issues.

I've been learning a lot about tags and Amazon. The more people tag us, the higher we appear in Amazon's search window. They must be logged into Amazon and then they can select tags for your book. Our British friends can do the UK store for us. You should go over and add anything pertinent that you can think of, up to 15 tags. I added your name. You just click the check mark. I'm on the 100 best seller list for the UK because of tags and my new low price special. You can find me, ebooks, fantasy, historical.

By the way, why $2.95 it has to be $2.99 to get 70%. Did you read the link I left at Joe Konrath's blog for John Locke? I posted that last Tuesday.
Nancy
N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium, Special .99 through April 30

Clarissa Draper said...

Three nipples!? Yes, I was paying attention. Congrats, everyone, on your great blogs and can't wait for Arlee and the challenge!

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I have lots of mystery rules, but not so many for magic! But I'd say no cheating--no getting out of a dire situation by using magic.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I fully expected this blog to be about your new iPad. I'll be back on Monday to hear from Arlee. I'm cheering for the 500.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Dempsey, your rules had me rolling!

Nancy, thanks for advertising. I think.

Clarissa, good for you!

Elizabeth - exactly!

Susan, oh it is cool!!!!!! Love the new iPad. I will blog about it soon.

Jai Joshi said...

I love the three warlocks rule. But what about the witches? Would they have to follow suit with three breasts?

I'm so sad to hear about the disaster in Japan and the danger now to all the countries threatened by the tsunami.

Jai

Jemi Fraser said...

Have fun with your new iPad2!! Believe it or not, I haven't actually seen an iPad 1 in action yet! Gotta love small cities :)

I agree with your magical rules ... except that last one! When magic isn't consistent it drives me nuts!

L'Aussie said...

The Japan quake/tsunami is unbelievable. Prayers across the Pacific. Now they could use some magic to wave it all away Alex.

Been to Talli's several times. It's a blast.

I hope your iPad delivers its magic. You can send your old one over the sea to me, mwhahaha...New model doesn't hit our stores til 25th March.

I'm hosting Roland over the weekend. Hope you can follow the Bear with Two Shadows...

Denise<3

Roland Yeomans Blog Tour here Saturday and Sunday. Follow The Bear with Two Shadows!

Milo James Fowler said...

Hope your new gadget is magical. I've heard the "old" iPad had some quirky delays...

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

So warlocks have extra parts??? NICE! (smile...blush)

Elizabeth Mueller said...

Lol, Alex, you're funny! Hey, does science fiction get to have magic in it? I noticed you only mentioned fantasy...

♥.•*¨ Elizabeth ¨*•.♥

Will Burke said...

Don't be too quick to dismiss the third nipple! It would make for some dramatic shirt-rending scenes! "I Knew it!"

N. R. Williams said...

I was trying to help you, Alex.
Nancy
N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium, Special .99 through April 30

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jai, I decided not to go there...

Jemi, we need to get an iPad in front of you soon.

Denise, I am enjoying my new iPad!

Milo, the new one is SO fast - it's almost scary.

Sharon, the good ones do!

Elizabeth, if you consider 'the force' magic...

Thanks for the morning laugh, Will!

Emailman said...

hahahaha!! Man, that made me laugh :) See, I was paying attention!

Great post, Alex.

Margo Benson said...

Three nipples reminds of the Bond villain, Scaramanga! I cannot divulge my magic as I'd have to turn you into a newt!

You'll have to excuse me as the goat needs feeding....

Cheeseboy said...

I don't know how you do it, but you always keep up so well with so many other bloggers. Kudos to you.

Lynda R Young said...

Magic must be... magical

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Margo, but even if you turn me into a newt, I'm sure I'll get better!

Cheeseboy, after all of my friends' support, they deserve my support!

Jennie Bailey said...

That earthquake and the resulting tsunami are bad enough...now those poor people are facing a possible nuclear meltdown. In my magic world, we would be able to solve things like this - powerful sorcerers and sorceresses would be able to put everything back together.

Are you enjoying your new ipad??

Ella said...

I love the tips and enjoy your magic date! ;-D

I feel so sad for those in Japan. I wonder if a friend of mine, went back there.

Will find time tomorrow to check out those links~ Thanks!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thanks for the shout-out, Alex. Love your magic rules. Three nipples only applies to evil warlocks -- I mean, wouldn't that put you in a bad mood. LOL. Roland

Donna Hole said...

Sounds like you could write a fantasy novel yourself Alex.

......dhole

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jennie, now that's a good use of magic. And yes - the new iPad is even better than the old one!

Roland, it would indeed.

Donna, I might some day!

Ellie said...

Warlocks have three nipples. LOL. You do make me laugh!

The Invisible Seductress said...

People would wear an aura patch that glows with the color of the true moral core of their personality.


A "buyer beware" warning of sorts.

She Writes said...

Three nipples :)! Hah! Yes, I was paying attention and appreciating the magic not forcing people to go against their own wills when I stumbled upon the demand for three nipples :)!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ellie, glad I could amuse!

Seductress, that would be handy, wouldn't it?

She Writes, glad you were paying attention.

Margo Berendsen said...

I like this one: "Magic is an innate ability to be trained - one can’t learn it just by studying magic" - the old "best way to learn is to do" principle? - I've often thought the appeal with the Harry Potter books has something to do with this!

Julie Musil said...

Boy, Alex, you're full of great information today! Thanks for all the linkage, and I'll stop by the other blogs.

Enjoy your iPad 2! Nice tax write off :D

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Margo, exactly!

Julie, never thought of that!

Ciara said...

Fantasy is my genre of choice. :)

So, how's that iPad 2?

Donna B said...

Wow...how do you answer all these comments plus keep up with your email and write...(whew) YOU are super man...I think I better look back in your archives for that post you did on managing your comments... Just wanted to stop in and say HI :}

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ciara, the new iPad is awesome - so much faster!

Hi Donna! Not sure how I keep up...

Cake Betch said...

Yay - did you see that you were featured over on Wistful Nebulae today?
http://mpaxauthor.blogspot.com/2011/03/happy-pi-day.html

Pat Tillett said...

This is my new source for news! Thanks for all the updates Alex...