Tag Archives: fantasy

Dragon House

5 Most Popular Pictures in 2015 – Part I

This is the first of two blog posts that look back at the five most popular pictures on Lita’s blog in 2015. Fifth place was a four-way tie. Here are the pictures and delicious teasers from their blog posts.

Jack Frost, Your Nipping Kisses Leave Flushed Cheeks

Jack Frost, Your Nipping Kisses Leave Flushed Cheeks

Fantasy Boy of Winter: Jack Frost

Burr, it’s wintertime outside of Lita’s castle here in the northern realms. Someone painted icy filigree on the windows. Let’s bundle up, go outside, and meet the artist.

Say hello to handsome Jack Frost, winter’s fantasy boy. This magician embodies lacy window paintings, trees draped with sparkling snow, and crystalline sculptures made of ice. He tosses about sheets of sleet as if they were billowing linens on a clothesline.

Jack is an affectionate one. He nips noses and toes with tingling kisses, and leaves behind his enthralling magic.

Snow sports enthusiasts adore this mischievous ne’er-do-well’s wintry efforts. Mister Frost delights in all chilly artwork, whether he fills mountain valleys with champagne powder for skiers or freezes a lowland lake until it is a perfect dance floor for an ice skater’s blades.

Jack Frost on His Way to Another Window Painting

Jack Frost on His Way to Another Window Painting

He is an artist and sculptor, too. His icy paintings on windowpanes have many admirers.

Jack also molds frigid streams into whimsy ice figurines. He does his work when your back is turned or during the long and dark winter nights.

Just don’t try stealing a kiss back from handsome Jack by putting your lips on a frozen well handle. Ouch. Lita warned you.

Hear that cad giggle at your foolishness in trying to catch him unawares? More…

See the Strands of Pixie Dust Swirl Around Her?

See the Strands of Pixie Dust Swirl Around Her?

Care of a Fey-Folk Fairy (Part 1)

Meet Tinker Bell’s naughtier cousins—the fairies flitting about in the woodlands near Lita’s castle.

Today, Lita talks about the worldly fairies that go with Kadmeion on his wizard-for-hire adventures. These wee magicians fly in, lavish their wizard with effervescent pixie dust, and give him spicy relationship advice. Despite the frivolity, these pretty spell casters harbor a deep magical sorrow.

This post is the first of two with tips for Gentle Reader on how to care for a fey-folk fairy. Today we focus on practical matters. Next time, we will talk about a fairy’s magical concerns.

Let’s Straighten This Out

First of all, why are they called fey-folk, instead of fay, faie, fee, or fae? The wizard’s Bestiarum Vocabulum describes fairy magic as flighty, fanciful, fragile, fantastical, fickle, and foolish. To reduce the tongue twisting, Lita calls them fey. More…

Sea Nymph and Water Birds Fairytale

Sea Nymph and Water Birds Fairytale

3 Naughty Ladies of Fantasy Fiction

A warning today for the gentlemen. In some Fantasy Worlds, you will find lascivious females. Guard your virtue!

While Lita was researching her next book, Old Bony Blue Eyes, she found several kinds of mer females in fantasy and folklore stories. An alarming pattern emerged. The mermaid tales combined two dangerous mysteries for menfolk–women and the ocean.

Could this all be mistaken identity? Lonely sailors long at sea might mistake sightings of manatees and dugongs for our aqua princesses. Perhaps the manatee’s seductive smile is an irresistible lure, and sailors will shipwreck in their haste to meet this lovely gal.

But wait. These gentle, large water mammals look nothing like a shapely human woman. Must be water mirages.  Let’s stick with fantasy artistry for our sea girls and not spoil the mood. More…

Next Time: 5 Most Popular Pictures in 2015 – Part II

A Visitor to Lita Burke's Blog

5 Most Popular Classic Posts in 2015

Lita is so delighted when Gentle Readers drop by her blog posts from earlier years. Here are the top five most visited classic posts in 2015.

A beautiful harpy in the Clockpunk Wizard world

A beautiful harpy in the Clockpunk Wizard world

FIFTH PLACE: Harpies Are Misunderstood

Madam Harpy, our Winged Sister of the Sky. Who did a disservice to this magical creature, turning her from a beautiful woman with feathery wings, into a fearsome hag?

Hesiod, a Greek oral poet from the same time period as Homer, described harpies as women with fetching hair. Pottery showed them as lovely damsels with wings. Just what Lita was looking for, pretty bird gals having chronic Good Hair Days. More…

Shy Jack Frost, Winter's Fantasy Boy

Shy Jack Frost, Winter’s Fantasy Boy

FOURTH PLACE: Fantasy Boy of Winter: Jack Frost

Burr, it’s wintertime outside of Lita’s castle here in the northern realms. Someone painted icy filigree on the windows. Let’s bundle up, go outside, and meet the artist.

Say hello to handsome Jack Frost, winter’s fantasy boy. This magician embodies lacy window paintings, trees draped with sparkling snow, and crystalline sculptures made of ice. He tosses about sheets of sleet as if they were billowing linens on a clothesline. More…

The Length of the Wand Matters Not

The Length of the Wand Matters Not

THIRD PLACE: 6 Critical Elements for Fantasy World Building (Part 3)

This is the third of a 3-part blog post about building rich fantasy worlds to immerse your readers. In part 1 we looked at two “big picture” elements: maps and politics. Part 2 was a “medium” view about wimpy food and eavesdropping.

This time we’ll talk about a couple of “detail” topics: the decorative apostrophe, and why it’s no fun for wizards to just wave their wands and rule the world. More…

Readers Love to Eavesdrop

Readers Love to Eavesdrop

SECOND PLACE: 6 Critical Elements for Fantasy World Building (Part 2)

This is the second of a 3-part blog post about building rich fantasy worlds to immerse your readers. In part 1 we looked at two “big picture” elements in building a fantasy world: maps and politics.

Today we will take a “medium-sized” view and see why meat and grog are wimpy. We’ll also learn how to speak in tongues. More…

There is Always Someone Opposing Your Fantasy People

There is Always Someone Opposing Your Fantasy People

FIRST PLACE: 6 Critical Elements for Fantasy World Building (Part 1)

World-building techniques have always fascinated me.  High Fantasy and Epic Fantasy books were my delight as a young reader.  I poured over the maps on the book’s end papers, studied every entry in the glossary in the back, even marveled over the lengthy character name lists in the front.

When it comes to creating fantasy worlds for my own fiction, I’m a writer who knows the details of the characters’ environment. I must have their vitae close at hand so I know them well enough to write about their struggles.  It also doesn’t hurt to speak their language and follow the latest fads for their clothing styles. More…

Here are more for the curious minded:

Go Fer in Forever Boy

RJL Evans Highlights Lita Burke’s Forever Boy

Lita takes Gentle Reader out on the web today to see what R.J.L. Evans, the author of ‘Mr Pimplesnack and the Flying Moon Bus’ has to say about Forever Boy.

Forever Boy by Lita Burke

Forever Boy by Lita Burke

“Life is dirty, difficult, and all too short for the dogs digging up the deadly mandrake roots that wizards animate with minor demons. A pup named Go Fer has an odd magical talent. He does not die from the fatal screams of newly unearthed mandrakes. Go Fer’s master, a prideful minor magician, sees Go Fer’s talent as a fluke saving him the cost of replacing dogs killed by the mandrakes’ cries.

“Check out this wonderful title by Lita Burke…”

One morning, a young Wizard Kadmeion and his half-elf assistant Bright watch Go Fer at work. This mandrake extraction goes horribly wrong, and Go Fer runs away during the hubbub. After seeking out the wizard, the dog’s life is not the same. In fact, Kadmeion discovers Go Fer is not a dog after all. More…

Read more about Lita’s Clockpunk Wizard world:

Most Popular Blog Post in 2015

Of all the new posts on Lita’s blog last year, here was the most popular for 2015. Kadmeion talked about his vacation visiting the unicorns on Wuddlekins Island, and Lita explained the Internet and eBooks to a 16th century wizard. Here is how the wizard’s interview started…

“On Wizard Kadmeion’s airship, the forward sitting room has the best views and conversation. Lita invites Gentle Reader to join the chitchat with the characters in her upcoming story, Glitter Ponies.

 
Wizard Kadmeion

Wizard Kadmeion

The twenty-something-year-old wizard takes a seat on a nearby Chesterfield, and studies us with his handsome dark brown eyes. His unstarched casual white shirt has a discreet gold-embroidered Magic Guild insignia near the left collar.

He wears a souvenir from his Glitter Ponies trip on the right side of his head. Kadmeion has braided an intricate gentleman’s hair clasp into some tendrils of his long brown hair. The wizard’s boy-fey, Izlyesende, clings to the clasp. When the fairy fans his beautiful green-mottled wings, they brush Kadmeion’s cheek. More…

Find out more about Kadmeion’s world of Clockpunk Wizard:

 

A Wizard's Airship

Glitter Ponies: All Aboard the Airship for Chapter 1

Here is a delicious fantasy tidbit to enjoy while waiting in the shopping lines.

So busy here at Lita’s castle in the Northern Realms with the hubbub of the holidays. Family, food, and fantasy worlds–nothing better.

That Fantasy Boy of Winter, Jack Frost, kisses cheeks and noses every time we go outside to play. Wizard Kadmeion hobnobs with his old school chum Jack Frost in Glitter Ponies. Curious? Never hurts to take a moment to peek at the wizardly goings-on.

Glitter Ponies by Lita Burke

Copyright 2015 by Lita Burke. All rights reserved.

Chapter One
Peach Pits, Wuddlekins Island

A flaming peach pit whistled past Wizard Kadmeion’s ear. The projectile bounced on the gangplank, rolled to his feet, and disappeared in a pop of fruit-flavored smoke. He spun toward the source. The aerodrome dock was empty.

“I see them.” Bright had paused at the top of the gangplank. His assistant’s voice was soft. “Brownies.”

Kadmeion stepped down onto the dock, and whisper-sang a vision acuity spell. The wizard squinted, and tried to get a glimpse of his attackers. Bright came down the gangplank, and stopped at Kadmeion’s right side.

“I can’t see them, Bright.”

“Then it is true.” More…

A Sye Catacomb

Book of the Dead: Catacombs

The Book of the Dead explains the nature of Church magic in the Enchanters of Sye world.

Sciomancers Perform Ritualistic Spells to Maintain the Ghosts in the Catacombs

Sciomancers Perform Ritualistic Spells to Maintain the Ghosts in the Catacombs

catacombs [kat uh kohmz] noun, c.800, ME catacomb < OE catacumbe < L catacumbās < G katakýmbās, hollow, cup; also Under Church or ghost hall.

  • Physical: Underground stone-lined enclosures
  • Magic Type: Church/Piety
  • Spell Group: Incorporeal Matters
  • Restrictions on Physical and Magical Construction: Priest only construction, Sciomancer only maintenance; all other secular, Magic Guild, and Enchanter magicians disallowed. Only Sciomancer magic may bind a ghost to the corporeal world using a relic.
  • Ghost Magic: Secular magicians, Magic Guild, and Enchanters may summon a catacomb ghost provided the magic does not confine the spirit.
Sciomancers Light Candles to Warm the Ghosts

Sciomancers Light Candles to Warm the Ghosts

Catacombs are underground hallways, alcoves, and tunnels beneath Church buildings that house receptacles for ghost relics.

To build a catacomb, three Priests combine their magical power and draw on the pooled enchantments of an above ground Church building. The town’s Priest tends the structure spells afterwards.

Sciomancers furnish the catacomb hallways and alcoves with candle niches, metal name markers, and locked drawers to hold ghost relics. They support a favorable ghost environment by tending the upkeep of the catacombs, performing ritualistic spells, and lighting candles to warm the spirits.

Visitors Leave Dishes of Magic-rippling Water For the Ghosts

Visitors Leave Dishes of Magic-rippling Water For the Ghosts

Church followers visit the catacombs, leave small remembrances in the niches, and recite spells to encourage the ghosts to stay in the corporeal realm instead of journeying to the Fields of Yalu.

The gifts are usually flowers or plants, dishes of magic-rippling water, or tiny wind chimes on a stand that have a small spell to make the bells sound.

Explore Sye ghost care and meet a valued catacomb ghost in these blog posts:

Read more about ghost amulets, the Book of the Dead, and how ghosts help a magical charms maker hide a dangerous spell book in these Enchanters of Sye stories:

A Clown at the Evil Circus

Evil Circus: Masks and Grease Paint

Cirque du Méchant Has Come to Halloween Town

Cirque du Méchant Has Come to Halloween Town

Cirque du Méchant has come to Halloween Town, close enough that you hear the calliope’s screams in Lita’s castle. Not all fantasy worlds are bright and full of whistling elves. This Evil Circus is a dark carnival filled madness, magic, and grinning clowns.

Previously:

See the jesters and harlequins with the huge shoes and painted-on grins. Their desperate antics with bloated tricycles the size of cars reminds us of crazed morning commuters vying for a parking spot.

Enrapt Children Stare at the Clowns in the Cirque du Méchant

Enrapt Children Stare at the Clowns in the Cirque du Méchant

There is one clown that they will not allow in their play. They bonk him with huge stripped bats. The crowd roars. We laugh for a moment, pleased that for once it isn’t us. We look around the crowd. Some children stare, enrapt at the antics. Clowns. Do the grease paint smiles hide their pain and desperation? Is the grease paint a mask? Such a disturbing thought.

The big top show ends with the arching blazes of fire eaters then an animal parade around the ring. Whips snap and the air stinks with the acrid odor of the fireworks.

Learn Your Future at the Fortuneteller’s Wagon

Learn Your Future at the Fortuneteller’s Wagon

Outside, night has come. The Evil Circus glitters at night. We pass the fortune teller’s wagon. Shall we learn our future, or talk to the regretful ghosts of our past? We pause, consider, and move on to ride the carousel instead.

The time has gotten late. Time to leave the Evil Circus, methinks. No need to run for the exit just because night has come. The colored circus lights will light your steps. Don’t forget your hat. Nor your sanity.

Evil Circus is like a mushroom that grows in the dark. Mostly tasty, but odd and disturbing. Be sure to visit the next time it comes to Halloween Town.

Want more? Watch Lita’s Cirque du Méchant video. It will only take a minute now, but will haunt you forever. Step right up.