At first, I’m in an airport like other airports, except for the scrumptious Irish soda bread with breakfast. (According to those in the know, that soda bread isn’t the Real Thing, but that’s a matter for another blog. When I’m ready to take a break from my minimal-carbs diet, I’ll try a bunch of soda bread recipes and hold a party here at Embracing Romance.)
Next I’m in a hotel like other hotels, and then on a bus into Dublin proper, a charming town in which I spend too little time. It’s so delightful that it almost distracts me…but not quite, because I know for sure that although I can’t see the fair folk, they are nearby.
OK, by now you’re thinking, “This woman is a superstitious freak.” You bet I am. I wouldn’t have it any other way. That doesn’t mean I believe everything I read or am told. If I spill the salt, I don’t make a worse mess by throwing some over my shoulder. I walk under ladders (after checking to make sure nothing is about to fall on me), and I’m rather fond of the number thirteen.
I’m choosy about my superstitions, and I have a few rules.
First of all, I don’t say (or even think), “I don’t believe in (insert name of supernatural creature here).” That way lies madness―or maybe just boredom, but regardless, I don’t go there. Not that I think it would harm any of the fair folk; they’re too hardy to be affected by Mere Words. However, disbelief would seriously jeopardize my relationship with my muse.
Second, I don’t dwell any longer than necessary on depressing superstitions such as prophesies of woe – so if I ever write about a banshee, she’ll rebel against being a harbinger of death. I prefer the fun kind of superstitions, although even those have their dangerous aspects. With or without magic, life isn’t safe.
Next, I’m on another bus, heading north into the countryside to a friend’s house. It’s lovely here, and the fair folk are everywhere. I feel them with my solar plexus and my heart. I walk up the hill and gaze out over the fields, and their presence comforts and inspires me. Sometimes they’re in plain view, but alas, I can’t tell you what they look like, because I don’t have the Sight.
My characters often do, though. I ask you now—if I don’t believe with all my heart in the fairy folk, how can I possibly expect to know how to write about them? How can I count on the words to flow and comprehension to flower like…well, magic? The more I write, the more magic of one kind or another infuses my stories – everything from the powerful toe bone of an Irish saint (Davnet, not Patrick) to grappling with fairy heritage to rolling naked in the dew on May morning — and I’m sure it’s because I believe every bit of it is real. (See below for the relevant titles.)
What does all this have to do with poor old Saint Patrick? Not a lot, I guess. Nevertheless, I celebrate his day and Ireland by wearing the green and a grin. Keep watch (or watch out!) for four-leaf clovers, and revel in the magic all around you.
So…how about you? Are you superstitious? If so, about what, and why? I’ll give away a free novella (for Kindle or Nook) to one lucky commenter. (Is it superstitious to believe in luck? So many philosophical questions arise…)[All photos were taken by me or my husband. The better the photo, the more likely it was taken by him.
Re the novellas mentioned above: Saint Davnet’s toe bone plays a role in The Unrepentant Rake, and The Magic of His Touch and Bewitched by His Kiss are a novella duet about May Day magic. As for grappling with fairy heritage, that’s in my work-in-progress, which is in too precarious a state to have a title. ;)]