Word World Alchemy


I get serious chills from these sometimes. Today is one of those days. The reason is that I pulled this immediately after  meeting with a faculty person working on a course in ecology. I saw that, in what she had provided me beforehand, I could cast an overlay of Systems Theory (very brief intro to the idea that opens in a new window).

I was amused at first that the first magnet I pulled was literally the word “system,” but then I was confused by the face that I drew the “co.” It made me wonder how in the heck that would ever link to a word. Except, my eye fell to the huge pile of my magnets, and saw the e. So, right there, was the word ecosystem.

This morning, I was writing my latest novel, in which I’m constructing two worlds that are pitted against each other: a history world and a fairy tale word. Caught in between is the conceptual female figure called the “Shrouded.”  There’s a high-stakes spell-casting that is going on without her audience knowing. It’s entirely based in alchemy, where they have to link the magical components within each tale that are keys to plot and their real counterparts in the actual histories. The fairy tales are linked together, as well, in a linear order, where one of the magical objects appears in the next. It’s also important to use the precise number of them that have been so pivotal to the tale.

The “Shrouded” is very much trapped in a semiotic and alchemical puzzle. Object-to-word relations that bring meaning to us being able to find our place in the world. (I know, I know – but these underpinnings things thrill me, and when my mind reveals what it’s actually doing as I write, my heart thumps, and I get so excited to see where it goes.)

Anyway, the person who figures it out happens to be a man who has an extended, though not immortal, life but maintains a youthful body. The winter life.

The only thing I don’t like about this message is the incorrect conjugation, but, then again, I’m a writer, so I figure it’s just confirming the fact that this is about the novel.

-Dr. Pyrate


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