Neil Mach

Author – Fantasy Realism

Pleasure in Reading

As a fantasy author you’ll want to deliver your readers lots of amusement & satisfaction. But what makes a book a pleasure to read? What makes a story pleasurable? Add a few of these ingredients and you are sure to delight your audience: “Get the reader to make emotional connections with your characters…” Encourage reader …

Continue reading

Fear Eyes

Here’s how to write something really scary… Part One: collect, interpret and organize experiences: Collect sensory data from all your characters: stuff paragraphs with sensory detail i.e. imagery,  sights, sounds, tastes, touch sensations, smells Interpret this sensory detail to maximise anxiety, i.e. icy gravestones, bat wings flapping, darkly swirling clouds, outrageous scents, vile flavours, goose …

Continue reading

Book Covers

Unless you’re a seasoned graphic designer and not only that but also an expert in book-cover design, I recommend, right away, that you don’t even consider designing your own cover. Yes, I know it will be faster & cheaper to do it yourself, but you will pay dearly in the long run. Dearly! The cover …

Continue reading

What is Whitsun?

Here in England, this weekend, we are celebrating Whitsun with fairs, fun-runs and festivities. If you live in a country that has a Christian tradition, you will have perhaps seen reference to “Pentecost” and, on rare occasions, to “Whit Sunday.” But what is Whitsun? What is Pentecost? From an ecclesiastical i.e. “churchy” point of view, …

Continue reading

ten folkloric monsters

Are you looking for unusual monsters and less frequently referenced mythological beasts? Check out this list of weirder, rarer, and singularly uncommon creatures for your next fantasy inspiration. 1: Almaz The Almaz (above) are evil creatures of the forest with magical powers. The Almaz female is very beautiful with large breasts and golden hair, and …

Continue reading

Windflowers 1903 John William Waterhouse

When I was a young kid, growing up in poor, post-war South London on the edges of the County of Surrey, each April we rehearsed MAY POLE DANCING. (If you wish, you can read all about my 1950s exploits in South London in the novel “The Sisterationship: A Charlatan’s Story” — a suburban folk-tale about …

Continue reading

procession of elves by gwillieth

How do Elves — the veiled ones — contribute to our understanding of belief in hidden things?


Do you like novel sorcery? Do you like new-fangled wizardry? Are you a creative fantasy fiction author? If you enjoy playing with magic and conceptualizing & planning your own magical systems, and you love to give new powers and special abilities to your fictional characters, you’ll want to be part of my nifty list (below) …

Continue reading

Useful alpha list of scientific words for magical abilities

Agathodemoning – asking good spirits to do our magical bidding Alchemy – changing the fundamental substance of elements (or matter) Angelspeak  – communicating with lesser deities and messengers (angels) Apotropaism & countercharms – defense against demons, ghosts, and evil sorcerers using magic Apportation or bilocation (psychic ability to be in two places or more at …

Continue reading


Therianthropy is the shifting of: theríon = wild beast into anthrōpos i.e human For many fantasy fiction authors, therianthropy means raging werewolves, murderous human/beast hybrids (similar to Mr Hyde as shown above) or magical shape-shifting creatures, malformed humanoids, or transformations from frog into prince. But the voluntary change from human to beast has been an …

Continue reading