Friday 3 June 2016

Guest Post - Have you ever missed a place you have never been? @Mtmagee1013M

Historical fantasy author, M.T. Magee takes us on a journey to the Highlands and the Emerald Isle...

Before, I hand over the blog, let's first set the mood and nothing does that better than music!

 1- hour Bagpipe Music (and Drumming)
Tsz Kin Mak

Hello, my name is M.T. Magee and I wanted to thank, the fabulous Mary Anne Yarde, for having me here, to share my inspiration for the background for my book, The Treasure of Gwenlais.

I would like to start off by asking, have you ever missed a place you have never been?

Have you ever looked at pictures and thought, I belong there?

I have done this for some time, whenever I was researching places, names and history, of Scotland and Ireland. I did extensive research on towns and villages throughout Scotland and Ireland, in order to create a rich background for the mythical Kingdoms of Gwenlais and Heathwin. 

The world I have created, comes from the inspiration of both my Scottish heritage, my grandparents come from Scotland, and my husband’s Irish descent, with pride and respect for both cultures. 

The beauty of the Scottish Highlands, as well as the lush rolling meadows of Ireland, serve as a backdrop for the mythical realm of Rienfield. Many of the names of villages and towns that are used are actual names of towns and villages of Scotland and Ireland. They are used in direct correlation for what their rich past made them known for and is applied with loving respect for their history in the story. Many of the names of the characters are Irish, Scottish, or Gaelic, again showing my love and admiration for our heritages. The characters also speak Gaelic Irish, from time to time, referring to it as ‘old speak.’ I hope you will find this as fascinating and beautiful as I did. I respectfully envy the fact, that those of you who live in the UK and Ireland, are surrounded by such amazing history. My oldest son refers to your wonderful part of the world as, “the land of castles and knights”, yes I have taught him well.

I was once asked in an interview, “why Scotland and Ireland?” Seriously? Have you read at all, about the amazing, romantic, brutal, history of it? How many wondrous legends, stories and poems still inspire even today?

The beautiful Gaelic languages are enthralling to say the least. I remember as a young girl of twelve, my Tolkien books in one hand and my history books in another. Trying to look up all the amazing places, that inspired one of my favorite authors and imagining I was there. When I would visit my grandparents, they were always listening to or playing traditional music. They loved anything with the fiddle, accordion, and especially loved bagpipes. I listen to it every day myself, before I start writing. One of my favorite aspects I enjoyed researching was the structure of families among the Scottish Clans. My grandfather’s family comes from the Fergus Clan, and I have to admit I felt a twinge of pride looking up the history, and knowing I belong to it in a small way. 

Family structure, I read was important and vital to the Clans strength and growth, and I enjoyed highlighting the importance of this in my book. How it truly did take a village at times to raise children, as older cousins were often called upon, to help raise their younger cousins and teach them about the family history and heritage. So many fascinating historical aspects, in the small towns and villages throughout Scotland and Ireland.

The cider making history, the weaving and sheep farming, even the tiny towns known for growing the best cabbage, all were wonderful and endearing aspects, I could not help but be enchanted by. I truly look upon your wonderful countries, as the home I have yet to return to. I hope that someday I will, as it will always be in my heart, and my most inspiring muses to my work now and which is to come. So with that I say, dea-la mo chairde!  I look forward to coming home, to land of castles and knights. 


About the author
My name is M.T.Magee and I am the proud Silver Medal recipient of the Drunken Druid Award based in Ireland. I write bestselling YA Historical Medieval Fantasy that is beautifully romantic with whispers of Gaelic legend. 

I live in New England on our small farm with my husband and son. We raise an assortment of silly goats, quiet rabbits, far too many ducks and chickens, and a high strung Border Collie cross named Gronk. I have always loved fantasy and fell in love with Tolkien at age eleven. I read all of his works at age twelve. I have been writing stories since I was ten years old and have always wanted to be an author. After fulfilling my dream of becoming a nurse, marrying the love of my life and having two wonderful sons, I have finally been able to fulfill my first dream of publishing my first book. My youngest son is severely disabled and I am his full-time caregiver. The long winter months here in New England make it virtually impossible to go out very often, so I used this time to begin my story The Treasure of Gwenlais. Fifteen months and 1144 pages later I am very happy to present my story to all of you. I love strong female characters, who are still able to convey a sense of vulnerability and be very relateable. I also love strong male leads who are not afraid to show their soft side. Love of family is important to me as I am sure it is to everyone and I convey this in my story.

So welcome to the world I have created and I hope you enjoy visiting often. I hope you all enjoy the brilliant work of my cover artist Tyler Donnelly.

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  1. I can agree to that! The movie place I miss is Pandora, from Avatar. I felt like I'd actually been there. And I miss Middle Earth from the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings movies. But the place I miss most is Tarth City, the site of many of my own books. When you create a place, you create the memories in your subconscious. It's the same as if you've been there. Love the pictures in this post. You really set the scene.

  2. Thank you Kayelle Allen! Yes it does feel at times as if I have already been there. I loved doing the research for the book as much as I enjoyed writing it. It was thrilling to be able to create a world based on the beautiful history of Scotland and Ireland.
    MT Magee

  3. Absolutely love this author and story! As for Scotland and Ireland...I long to return. I believe I've left pieces of my soul in both countries. A beautiful, magical post, MT! Thanks so much for taking me back "home" today! :)

    1. Thank you so much Mary! It was a pleasure!

  4. I love Scotland and Ireland although I've never been there and I especially love reading about both. MT dear lady-you have captured our hearts and imagination in The Treasure of Gwenlais and we cannot wait to read your 2nd in your Reinfield Chroniles.


See you on your next coffee break!
Take Care,
Mary Anne xxx