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  • Rachael Bell-Irving

Magic and Technology

Why is it that, in so many books, magic and technology do not mix? A reoccurring trend in fantasy seems to be that magic has no effect on technology, or technology does not exist at all. It isn’t a rule of the fantasy genre, but it is frequent enough to notice that magic and technology have some kind of love-hate relationship.

While I don’t know why this trend has persisted, I do think it is an important topic to consider while writing a book about magic. And so, I have an explanation about how magic and technology interact within the Beatae series. In this universe, magic is living energy. In the case of living organisms, magic is able to capitalize on the moments of chance that exists within all living things. The split second before every choice, action or movement where there is a wide variety of probable outcomes. Magic takes advantage of this split-second uncertainty, or variability, within living things. Inanimate things are easy to manipulate due to their lack of consciousness or will. There is no chance or choice, therefore magic can manipulate however the castor wishes.

Technology does not have a moment of probability, nor is it completely without consciousness. It is programmed specifically to do individualized functions, maybe hundreds or thousands at a time. For a spellcaster's magic to connect with that specific function, takes a great deal of time and practice. It is not impossible, but exhausting. Even if a spell-caster is able to decipher the function of the machine and manipulate their magic in a way to take advantage of that programming, technology updates on a regular basis. This forces a spell-caster to alter their work, or even start from scratch. So, in this universe, magic and technology can mix. It is, however, similar to mixing oil and water. They can cooperate, it just takes a lot of work and the two will never fully be synchronous.