Welcome to The Quill's Lair:
Gathering of the Magicae

It is delightful to have you join me. I hope to make this a gathering of those who wish to make the magic happen--either by writing or reading or both. So, sit down, grab a cup of hot tea or a bowl of stew, and get cozy. Let's get to know each other.
Both inspiration and thought go into this newsletter. First, the inspiration:


The name was inspired a passage of my work-in-progress, The Sword of Ferbandey (located at my Fedonta website), and after much discussion with a friend.

Here is the passage:

Fae had never been in the presence of a spirit like this, which offered such quiet but rich inspiration. It was as if the tree itself were a muse, an expression of the Source, pulling beauty from the brook as it babbled by, and strength from the fire of the sun’s rays. The trunk split three ways, two of them outstretched as if to welcome someone into a warm embrace. Its roots stretched out beneath it in almost Celtic knot-like patterns reaching deep into the earth. As the willow’s soft golden branches swayed with the wind, its leaves danced too, and the young magicae saw it: a single red feather leaning out of the knot hole of the tree, and she summoned to her hand the quill from its lair.

I wasn't just inspired, though, I thought about the title of this newsletter a lot, and wanted to get it right.  (A friend of me helped me sort through, and toss out, tons of other possibilities.) Words have meaning, right?

So, let's break it down...
 The Quill's Lair: Gathering of the Magicae

Quill: A quill is a writing implement made from a moulted flight feather (preferably a primary wing-feather) of a large bird. Quills were used for writing with ink before the invention of the dip pen, the metal-nibbed pen, the fountain pen, and, eventually, the ballpoint pen... Quill pens were the instrument of choice during the medieval era due to their compatibility with parchment and vellum.

Lair: A lair is a secret or private place in which a person seeks concealment or seclusion.

Gathering: A gathering is an assembly or meeting, especially a social or festive one or one held for a specific purpose, and in medieval times, it also meant a collection of pages forming part of a book before binding. (Love this!)

Magicae: This is the Latin translation for magic (nom, f, pl). I used this form because the word magical is describing "tribes" which is feminine, plural. (I am not an expert in Latin by any means, but Latin always struck me as having both a medieval and magical tone to it.) This is also a word that will pop up in The Sword of Ferbandey!

Words with meaning. I hope you take to them, or that they grow on you like intricate ivy on an elegant castle wall.

So, this newsletter is meant to be a secret or private place for (medieval) writing where the magical (tribes) meet (in order to form a collection of pages before binding)...
So what can you expect to find here?
Writing tips

As I find them, I want to share them. Authors need to lift each other up, and develop our trade-craft. The more people who love to read, the better! Authors needs to understand not only the art of words, but the crafts of platform building and agent finding, too.

Myth and Magic

Let's explore our rich heritage, both in terms of the myths and stories that relate to our history, but also to look at the mundane with open eyes. Have you ever wondered about whether medieval tonics worked because of the properties of the herbs involved? Have you been enthralled with the unexplainable or curious about the lore of spirits, dark magic or the power of faeries? Let's talk about those things, unearth that world together.


I don't want this letter to be only from me to you. I encourage you to contact me or reach out on the
Tavern Talk forums to the larger gathering. This is about building both one-on-one relationships and a community. You can always send me a scroll to let me know your thoughts, concerns or ideas, or just let me know you are having a fantastic, or horrible day. Just give it to the brownie. (Brown delivers!) He's grumpy, but diligent, and takes pride in his work, or take your chances with his more mischievous cousin who may drop it in the mud and moss. Either way, I will always make time to get back to you.

So, how often can you expect to hear from me?

It depends. Generally, I will send a letter out once a week to once a month.  If there is a lot going on in the writing or fantasy realms, though, you may get an extra one or two thrown in. If it's a really busy season, though, like it can be during the holidays, then it might take me a little longer to get one out. I hope you will bear with me.

As we get to know each other, YOUR comments will go towards making The Quill's Lair: Gathering of the Magicae a better letter. As Magicae, you have the opportunity to make this lair a more interesting place. So, gather around, and let's get warm by the fire and quill some tales together...
Copyright © 2016 AJ Benson, All rights reserved.

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AJ Benson · *** · Hanover, MD 21076 · USA

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