Friday, December 23, 2011

Secrets of Magic : Torren The Teller's Tale Tour

Do You Know the Secret of Real Magic?
By Shevi Arnold

Do you believe in the magic of stories?

I’m not asking if you believe in magic wands, pixie dust, or bunny holes that can transport you to Wonderland. What I’m asking is do you believe in the magic of stories themselves? I’m not asking if you believe in the magic of Harry Potter, Tinkerbell, and the White Rabbit. What I’m asking is if you believe in the magic of J.K. Rowling, James M. Barrie, Lewis Carroll.  

I believe in that kind of magic. Stories, after all, have transported me to other worlds. They’ve allowed me the opportunity to experience lives different from my own. They’ve let me see things from different points of view. And they made me care about, cry for, laugh with, and fall in love with people I could not have met any other way. Stories have moved me and made me think. They’ve made me see things about my own life and my own world that I’ve never noticed before.

Detail from the cover of Toren the Teller's Flight, book two of Toren the Teller’s Tale

What’s that if not magic?

In my new book, Toren the Teller’s Tale, the main character becomes an apprentice to a wizard who wants her to learn the greatest magic of their world:

My master leaned in close again and began to teach me my first true lesson. “When you think of magic, you think of wizards and witches. You might also think of dragons. But that is only half of what magic is. Magic is everywhere to some degree.”

He pointed at the wares of the vendors around us. “There is magic in the artistry that made that cloth over there: magic in the dyes that created the colors, the fingers that worked the loom. There is magic in those candles and in the glass. All of this magic can be wielded by one who holds the power. You have a great deal of power already in you, but you must learn how to use it.

“It isn’t enough to learn spells and how to make potions. You must learn how to read the magic in everything. You must learn to tell the story of the dye and the fingers, the candle, and the glass. The ultimate magic is the story that doesn’t merely describe the thing, but is the thing. If you read something until you know it completely--every bit of its magic, every part of its story--then you will be able to retell that story in a single, unspoken word called a Shemet. Tell its Shemet, and it is yours not only to shape and bend but also to create from nothing.

“This ultimate power became lost when the magic of our world was shattered about eight hundred years ago. It is written that in the Age of Magic the power of wizards and witches was so great they shined as brightly as the sun. Today we are no more than scarcely glowing embers.” Here he paused and looked deeply into my eyes. The expression on his face was earnest. “I believe, however, the old magic can, and must, rise again. The evil magic in our world--that devastating wind--is gathering its strength too, and we must take action to bring it down.”

He took the amulet on the chain around my neck, pressed it into my palm, and folded my fingers around it. “We wizards and witches brandish magic. But we have become so obsessed with its symbols--the potions and the spells--that we have forgotten what the source of our highest power is: the reading and retelling of the Shemet.  I need you to learn all the magic there is to learn. To do that you must learn everything. Above all, you must learn from those who are closest to the source of this magic, those who hold the power of the telling.”

My master stepped aside and gestured toward the storyteller, who had now finished his performance. First came a brief silence. Then sighs of pleasure, cheers, and clapping followed, and the audience dispersed. Some wiped away tears, while others chatted. All were smiling. My master took me by the arm and led me to the man . . .

I believe it’s the greatest magic of our world too.

What about you? Have you ever felt the magic of the storyteller?

Shevi Arnold is the magical writer of Toren the Teller’s Tale, which is available from Amazon as an e-book in two parts: book one, Toren the Apprentice’s Tale and book two, Toren the Teller’s Flight. Editions for Barnes and Noble Nook and the Apple iBookstores, as well as a print version, are the works. The book is suitable for teens and tweens.

If you’d like to learn more about Shevi Arnold’s wizardry, check out her blog: or her website You can also follow her on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook