Guest Blogger: Rayne Hall

Today author Rayne Hall is my guest blogger and she’s talking about love spells and how to write about them.  For all of you that write paranormal, fantasy, or looking to add a magical element into your contemporary works, this is for you!

Writing About MagicWRITING ABOUT LOVE SPELLS

by Rayne Hall

Love spells make great fiction, full of secrets, conflict, drama and passion.  Your character can cast her own love spell, or she can seek professional help from a magician (from a witch, a ritual wizard, or other type of mage).

The most common ingredients used  in the ritual are roses (often red or pink),  something from each of the two people (usually a lock of hair, and in modern times, a photograph),  red candles, a fruit (for example, an apple), a crystal (rose quartz is a favourite), herbs (such as dittany or balm of gilead), spices (especially cinnamon), and red wine, and a ribbon (red or pink).

However, the ingredients vary between different types of magic. For example, an Enochian may use different ingredients from a Wiccan.  Also, individual magicians have their own preferences.  The actual ritual also differs.

Typically, the magician may cut the fruit in halves, insert the locks of hair, and tie the fruit back together with  the pink ribbon.  Or she may brew a love potion which involves red wine simmering in a cauldron with rose petals, herbs and cinnamon.

If both people are present, the magician may link their hands and tie them with a ribbon or scarf.

If only one person is present, the spell won’t be complete until the second person has become involved, for example, by drinking the love potion.

CLIENTS
Most clients are besotted with someone who doesn’t requite their feelings. They are convinced that this person is the one for them, that they’re meant to be together, that they will not be fulfilled and happy until that person is theirs. They also believe that the love spell is in the best interest of that person, and that the relationship will be a happy one if only the person would return their love.  They are desperate, can’t bear the pain of their unrequited passion any longer, and are willing to pay almost any price for a love spell.

Other clients are lonely and looking for love. They want a spell to help them find a mate. These include teenagers whose self-esteem is low because they don’t have a boyfriend,  single women whose biological clock is ticking, and men who can’t get a date.

On rare occasions, a couple may seek a magician’s help to save their crumbling marriage.

In historical fiction, parents and politician may resort to love spells to bring about an advantageous match, or to bring affection to an arranged marriage.

CONFLICTS
Most modern magicians consider it unethical to interfere with a person’s free will. Although they will happily help the couple who wish to strengthen their bond, and the lonely heart in search of a mate, they will refuse to force a specific person’s feelings.

However, not all magicians have the same qualms, and in earlier period, many made good money from love potions. Even today, many magicians advertise on the internet, promising to deliver one’s heart’s desire.

Some magicians compromise by creating spells which work only if there is already some affection between the couple.  For example, the desired person must drink wine from the same cup as the client, immediately after he has drunk from it – something she wouldn’t do if she hated him. An ancient Egyptian love spell required the man to anoint his member with a potion before having intercourse with the woman of his desire – and for that to work, she already had to fancy him quite  bit.

Other magicians try to dissuade the client from focussing on a specific person. Instead, they recommend a general love spell, one which will help the client find a suitable mate.

For the strictly ethical magician, requests for love spells can lead to terrible dilemmas. Here are some ideas you may want to play with:

● What if the client is suffering terrible pain from unrequited love, and the magician wants to ease his suffering? What if the desperate client is her own sister, her best friend, her son? What if turning down the request for a love spell causes a rift between them?
● What if if the client won’t take no for an answer? What if the client is the king, the chief inquisitor, or other powerful person? What if the client threatens to punish the magician for her refusal?
● What if the client is rich and willing to pay a lot for a love spell? What if  the magician desperately needs money to save her lover or to feed her starving child?
● What if a ruthless magician agrees to waive his principles and grant the heroine the love spell she craves … but only if she pays a terrible price for it?
● What if the magician herself suffers from unrequited love? What if her ethics forbid her to manipulate someone’s will, but she is convinced that it is for that person’s own good?  What if her need overrides her conscience?

CONSEQUENCES
Love spells interfering with someone’s free will can lead to disaster.  Here are some plot ideas:

● What if the love spell works at first, but wears off after the wedding? What if the person finds out that their spouse had trapped them with a love spell?
● What if the two people love each other, but their relationship is desperately unhappy – and they can’t out of it? What if they blame the magician for their misery?
● What if the client loses interest and wants to end the relationship – but the other person is still obsessively in love and won’t let them go? What if that person stalks the client for the rest of his life?
● What if the client regrets his action, and wants to undo the love spell – and it can’t be reversed?
● What if a pedophile uses love potions to seduce minors? What if a serial killer applies magic to lure victims to their doom?
● What if a fortune hunter tries to trick an heiress into drinking the love potion? What if she’s been alerted to his intentions, and has to be constantly vigilant to thwart him?
● What if the family hires a bodyguard or detective to protect their heiress daughter from love spell assaults?
● What if the victim’s family find out that the girl has been the victim of a love spell, and try to save her? What if they make great sacrifices to enable the spell to be undone – but she doesn’t want to be saved?
● What if the heroine discovers that her best friend’s intended is a ruthless man who forced her feelings with a love potion – and the friend refuses to believe it? What if the victim of the love spell is a man whom the heroine has secretly loved all her life, and now another woman has ensnared him with magic?

The fiction potential of love spells is endless. I hope this article has inspired your creativity.

ABOUT RAYNE HALL
Rayne Hall has published more than forty books under different pen names with different publishers in different genres, mostly fantasy, horror and non-fiction. Recent books include Storm Dancer (dark epic fantasy novel), 13 British Horror Stories, Six Scary Tales Vol 1, 2, 3, 4 (creepy horror stories), Six Historical Tales (short stories), Six Quirky Tales (humorous fantasy stories), Writing Fight Scenes, The World-Loss Diet, Writing About Villains, Writing About Magic and Writing Scary Scenes (instructions for authors).

She holds a college degree in publishing management and a masters degree in creative writing. Currently, she edits the Ten Tales series of multi-author short story anthologies: Bites: Ten Tales of Vampires, Haunted: Ten Tales of Ghosts, Scared: Ten Tales of Horror, Cutlass: Ten Tales of Pirates, Beltane: Ten Tales of Witchcraft, Spells: Ten Tales of Magic, Undead: Ten Tales of Zombies and more.

Rayne has lived in Germany, China, Mongolia and Nepal and  has now settled in a small dilapidated town of former Victorian grandeur on the south coast of England. She can be found on Twitter at: @RayneHall

SPELLS V3BELTANE witch fantasy Rayne Hall  cover Oct2011

Muse Music: Otherside

Muse Music- whiteToday is day 1 of the biggest challenge I’ve accepted to date in my writing career.  Today, I start work on my new paranormal wip!! 🙂

Big whoop, right. 😐  What’s so new and exciting about that you say? Well, thanks to Candace Havens and her Book in a Month Club workshop. I will have a finished manuscript (yes, a complete, from start to finish, 60k word draft ) in 2 (TWO) weeks.

And as you know, music is a huge influence on my writing.  Music  helps to set the tone, helps to channel emotion, and helps to create conflict, as well as resolutions. So, to get me off to a good start on those first 15 pages, I’ve selected my untitled paranormal’s theme song: Otherside by The Red Hot Chlli Peppers. I LOVE this video too.

Muse inspiration lyrics:

I heard your voice through a photograph
I thought it up and brought up the past 

 

*Lyrics by: Michael Balzary, John Frusciante, Anthony Kiedis, Chad Smith
*Lyrics & music are property and copyright of their owners; provided here for educational purposes and personal use only.

Review: Myla by Moonlight

Myla by Moonlight 
Myla by Moonlight
Author: Inez Kelley
Genre: Paranormal Fantasty Romance
Rating: 4.75

 

 

Myla–an enchantment–was spelled as the dying act of a mother bent on protecting her newborn son from all the dangers and evil she knew would dog his footsteps all his life.  Myla’s only duty has been to keep Prince Taric alive and safe.  She’s performed that duty well, until  one night she’s hurt when saving him from an assassin he hadn’t seen coming.  Taric began to see his protector as something other than the fiercest warrior he’d known. In one terrifying instant, her fragile side sparked emotions he’d never felt before.  After a  forbidden night of passion, Taric knew he had problem on his hands, Myla, while real to him, was not human.  How could she give him the one thing he had to have in order to ensure his kingdom’s survival? A child.

For Mother’s Day, I was gifted with an eReader.  And being excited about it, as I tend to get when I recieve new gadgets, I took to the Twitterverse to get suggested eTitles I should try.  Lo and behold, one of my Twitter friends, who also happens to be an author, suggested her book.  I looked it up, and when I saw the following warning, I knew this story was for me:

“Warning: This book contains a shape-shifting bodyguard, sizzling sex scenes, supernatural lilac mist, swordfighting and heartbreaking sacrifices. No jaguars were harmed in the writing of this story.”

And just let me tell you, I was not disappointed. I loved Myla by Moonlight.  Ms. Kelly transported me to a richly detailed world, where wars wage, magic flows and love scorches the pages, the virtual pages that is ;-) .   This story is beautifully told and doesn’t release its hold on you until the very end. It has something for everyone, romance, action, shape-sifters, trechery, sword play, and heroic sacrifices.  I got lost in its magic on page one and I’m secretly hoping (well I guess not so secretly since I just put this out in the web universe-lol) that the author is hard at work on another story featuring this world and some of it’s characters.

This book is also available in print, and I highly recommend you pick it up, especially if you like the Fantasy and/or Paranormal genres. This story is a masterful blend of the two, full of action and sensory detail to transport right in the midst of Taric and Myla’s story.


Review: The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker

The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker

Title: The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker
Author: Leanna Renee Hieber
Genre: Victorian Paranormal– yes, I think I just made that genre up  🙂
Rating: 4  

I just finished reading Ms. Leanna Renee Hieber’s new release and I really enjoyed it.

Usually Victorian/Gothic-y/Ghost stories (or any combination of these 3 elements) would not be on my “To Read” list. However, I met Ms. Hieber at the RWA National Convention this year, and a 3 chapter except was included in one of my goodie bags. Needless to say, after reading this excerpt, I know I had to get this book when it was released.

Strangely Beautiful is an enchanting story that flows wells, with a lyrical prose that really helped to immerse me in the time and setting. Ms. Hieber does a great job setting the scene in vivid detail, introducing her cast of characters, and working in her lore. She gives us an intro into what life is like for the Guard and a hint of what’s to come their way, leaving just enough unanswered question to have me waiting for the next installment.

I also enjoyed learning about Percy Parker.  She is definitely a different type of heroine from what I usually find in the stories I pick up.  Percy is shy and soft spoken, almost fragile at times, but she steps up and asserts herself when she needed to.   I am really interested in what her character growth and development will be over the arc of the series.  While I tend to l But I can o was the differences that made the story actually liked that she was soft spoken and shy,

I give The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker 2 thumbs up.   It’s not the usual romance or paranormal that I read, but it was a refreshing break for me.