I really enjoy reading books that involve magic. I think I’m so attracted to this aspect of fiction is because the first book that really got me into reading was a YA Fantasy novel that was all encompassing magic. Not to mention you can get very inventive with magic, its properties, and uses.
I’ve been meaning to write this posts since way last year, but never really got around to written it. Originally, the idea was to write a general discussion about magic in fiction. But I was recently more inspire to write a post about the types and usages magic in fiction, the common threads I’ve observed through extensive reading.
Nature / Elements / Seasons
Magic that comes from the land. Elemental magic associated with fire, water, wind, air, earth, metal, lightning, wood, etc. Magic derived from the four seasons: spring, summer, winter, autumn. This type may also present itself as the ability to communicate with animal life.
Everyone Has Magic
A magical society in which everyone has and can use magic.
NOT Everyone Has Magic
A world in which a group of people or country have magic but others don’t. Sometimes the separation is between humans and magical beings.
In which magic in general or a particular magic is passed down through a familial, maternal or paternal bloodline.
Magic that is conducted through objects, typically staves, wands, swords, rings, orbs, rocks/stones, arrows, etc.
Spells / Incantations
An arrangement of words cast in order to use magic, sometimes involving or learned from a book of spells.
Mages / Wizards / Witches / Magicians
General names for magic users (if a story chooses to use these titles).
Seers / Oracles
Characters who can foresee the past, present and/or future. This is done through visions, bowls of water, looking into fire, or looking into an orb. These characters can be interpreted as having magic or mediators of a higher being. This ability is unpredictable.
Gifted / Bestowed
Characters referred to as being “Gifted” – or some other such title denoted to magic users – with magic or have magic given to them. This sometimes occurs through a higher being or god, depending on the universe.
Magic possessed by a particular individual that is predicted to do great harm or good, the views and expectations of which are discerned depending on how one interprets the prophecy.
Magic That Manifests Later
A character who possesses magic since birth but doesn’t know it. This character will grow up in a normal, human way until a certain event incites the magic within to manifest.
These are different variations and characteristics of magic I’ve seen in books I’ve read; each one observed occurring in more than one book.
What do you think about magic in fiction? What other types of magic would you add to this list or include with what’s already listed? I’d love to hear what you think about this topic.