librarian novel seniors

World of Magic


Mythic Monday

Mythic Monday ~ Fylgia



Welcome to my first Mythic Monday.

The best part of being a writer, for me, is world building. I love learning. I can spend hours researching folklore & mythology, cultures & customs from around the world and weave it into my stories. So every Monday I’m going to give you a glimpse into my story world.

In my first novel, my main character needed a mentor to the magical world. She’d forgotten magic. When she returns home, she has visions of her childhood imaginary friend, Mr. Tattertoes.

Mr. Tattertoes needed to be a guardian spirit, a magical creature that existed in the spiritual or ethereal realm. He would provide guidance, support and protection to my main character on her journey through the novel.

This is where the fun begins! Research. I want my magical creatures to be unique to literature and have a universal appeal. Talk about reaching for the stars. I like to dream big.

My research revealed that Native American cultures believe each person is born with a totem animal. A religious person has a guardian angel. Medieval Norse mythology claims that each person has a shadow spirit called a Fylgia (Fel-Gee-Ah). Three different names for the same guardian spirit? The only one that doesn’t have an animal form is the guardian angel and I want my character to be in an animal form.

Fylgia sounded like the best fit. I don’t think I’ve seen the creature’s name in a novel before. A Fylgia is a spiritual entity in animal form that has a huge impact on a person’s life. Their role is similar to a guardian angel, providing guidance, support and protection. They can also be bound to an anchoring point, such as a medallion or stone, which would provide me with the leeway to have him left behind as my character ‘grew up’ and forgot magic.

It’s pretty cool when hundreds of years of world belief systems cooperate with your writing!

So, let me ask you, if you had a Fylgia, what animal would it be?

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