Writing Out Loud

Magical Fantasy Worlds are all Around Us

Snowy photo

Landscape Inspiration

Here is the scene outside my back gate this January morning. Such a change from the recent muddy, wet, damp and dreary weather.

This kind of scenery, when the snow is fresh and clean, transforms the world, making the everyday seem magical. It reminds me that wonder is all around us, all the time, and that within everyday scenes there is magic just waiting for the right conditions to awaken it.

Just like in the best fantasy fiction.

Though fantasy worlds are built from imagination, they’re rooted in the real, familiar world. Without that connection to the familiar, fantasy would lose its appeal. We need to identify with the inhabitants of the strange new lands that authors create,  to recognise the familiar that’s hidden just beneath the surface so we can understand the fights, disasters and dangers the characters find themselves facing.

The appeal in fantasy is the way things are never quite what they seem.

An ordinary mortal may turn out to be the greatest wizard, domestic animals may prove to be telepathic guides, and even the landscape and nature can and does conceal its true identity behind a normal-seeming facade. From caverns and secret tunnels hidden within mountains to sentient trees and talking insects, fantasy fiction takes the familiar and spins it into something new.

The snow this morning transformed the ordinary lane behind my house into an enchanted trail, unfamiliar and mystical.

It reminded me to really look at the world around me, and appreciate the inspiration that’s right on my doorstep.

As Pablo Picasso said, “Everything you can imagine is real.”

8 thoughts on “Magical Fantasy Worlds are all Around Us

  1. Sue Worthington

    Oh you make me envious with your imagination and creativity!
    Yes I must agree that a covering of snow makes everything seem so fresh and magical – we all rush out with the camera when we see that first winter snow!

    Thanks for a lovely gentle post


    1. Deborah Jones Post author

      Sue, thank you, you’re very kind. One of the best things about snow is the hush it brings to the world. There is something reverent about it. I think that’s what make a White Christmas so special, even for those with no religious beliefs :)

  2. Lori

    It’s so true that our environment can stimulate imagination – if we let it!

    We have 6 outdoor cats that we inherited when we bought our home. Their personalities are all so different, and just watching them interact makes me want to give them all a story. (add in deer, two stupid cows, stray dogs, and other wild-life, and I could have a real saga happening in my back yard)

    Thanks for your post – you got me smiling.

  3. The Great Gordino

    Hi Deb,
    You are right about the scenery and the effect of new snow – not quite the same when it goes all grey and slushy!
    I liken fantasy worlds to the worlds of our dreams, that’s hwo we get drawn into them as well.


  4. Susan


    Thank you for writing about the magical fantasy land of winter! As a Canadian living in Australia I sometimes miss the snowy seasons.

    My ex-boyfriend, many years ago wrote me a love letter & it said “the snow never sparkled until I met you” as I pointed out the sparkling to him one night when he was walking me home. Oh and the crunch underfoot. Just divine.

    Thanks for reminding me as I sit next in my shorts at 10:25pm next to the air conditioner in Perth, Western Australia.

    Thank you.

    1. Deborah Jones Post author

      Susan, I’d miss it too, although winter has never been one of my favourite seasons. This morning, though, it just struck me as wonderful. TBH I’d trade you for some heat any time. Spare me a thought as you hug your air conditioner. Oh, and I love that romantic line!

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