Welcome to Imagine That on Wednesdays!
In honor of my soon to be released urban fantasy novel, Elemental Magic, I’d like to share some of my research on the four classic elements and what they represent.
Water is a restorative, life sustaining element. Characters with an affinity to water are often peaceful, although they can also respond with violence when provoked. Somewhat like the sea–calm one moment, violent the next. Water personalities tend to be emotional, deep, nurturing, sympathetic, empathetic, imaginative and intuitive; however, they can also be sentimental, sensitive, escapist and irrational. Water environments are tranquil and abundant with life.
If your element is water, then your animal buddies would be the dolphin, seal, turtle, frog, and all types of fish. Mythical creatures associated with this element are the Mermaid (salt water), Naiad (fresh water), and sea dragon.
Earth is an element of stability. Characters who wield this element tend to be physically strong or imposing, but they can also be either passive or aggressive. Earth personalities tend to be calm, practical, hard working, wise, stable, patient and sensual; however, they can also be stubborn, possessive, jealous, nearsighted and very harsh. Its environment can be either barren or abundant in life.
If your element is earth, then your animals would be the stag, bull, bear, snake, and of course all burrowing animals. (Ground squirrels anyone?) Mythical earth creates are the Satyr/Faun, Gnomes/Goblins (I really hope they don’t meant the garden variety), and Dryads (tree nymphs).
Air (also referred to as wind) represents freedom and whimsy, and is often wielded by carefree characters. This element often emphasizes speed over strength. Air personalities tend to be kind, intellectual, communicative, social and helpful. However, they can also be cold, superficial, vicious and very insensitive to other people’s emotions. Environments associated with this element tend to be at high elevations or actually suspended in the air. (Who wants a floating castle in the sky?)
No specific animal is listed, though you can assume anything with wings could personify this element. The only mythological being linked to air is the Sylph, an air spirit probably resembling a fairy or pixie.
Fire is often depicted as a destructive element, but it also gives life. For example, forest fire burns away old, dead foliage to make room for new growth. It is often regenerative and formative. Fire tends to be wielded by aggressive characters, or warm and passionate ones. Fire personalities are believed to have good leadership qualities, and also tend to be extroverted, rebellious, passionate and enthusiastic, brave and valiant; however, they can also be moody, hot-tempered, snappy, uncontrollable and angry. Fire environments tend to be hot, hostile and dangerous.
Interestingly, the animal most closely associated with this element are cats, especially the lion and tiger. Any predatory animal, such as the fox, can personify fire, and sometimes the hawk is linked to this element, even though many associate it with air. The mythological creatures are the phoenix, dragon, and salamander (related to the myth that they mysteriously emerge from flames).
My personality leans more towards Water and Earth, though I have always been fascinated with Fire. (Opposites attract, maybe?) I certainly have a greater love for Fire’s elemental creatures. 😉
What’s your element? Which one would you like to be, or which one would you like to have magical power over? I love hearing from you!
Watch for the release of my latest book, Elemental Magic, the first in my new urban fantasy series:
Aileen Donovan is an oceanographer with magical control over the element of water. While her normal focus is on research and fighting poachers, she’s about to go up against the stuff of legends—and that’s saying something for a supernatural.
A transport ship is missing and everyone’s eager to get their hands on the cargo. No one knows what it is, but when fragments resembling coral begin to drive local residents insane, Aileen suspects a preternatural source. Whatever is at the bottom of the ocean, a power-hungry alchemist wants it, and releases a sea dragon to eat the competition—literally.
Aileen sees this as an opportunity to prove her worth, but as the stakes are raised, she’ll have to choose between duty and renown. When the tide washes out, it would have been better if that lost ship had stayed lost.