Another ‘Brainstorm’ post from our new subreddit, /r/magicbuilding.
A large part of fantasy stories involve wizarding orders and a system of arcane education. It varies from book to book and series to series – Harry Potter is centred on Hogwarts, while Trudi Canavan (The Black Magician) and Jill Murphy (The Worst Witch) also put their stamp on magical school stories. There are apprentices such as Pug in Feist’s Riftwar series (who studies on both Midkemia and Kelewan during Magician), and Twilight Sparkle in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is Celestia’s pupil and representative in Ponyville.
So in what I hope will be an ongoing series of brainstorming threads, here are some ideas to get you thinking:
- What is your established system of learning magic? Does it necessarily involve formal education, or can a young wizard or sorceress learn to manipulate and control magic on their own?
- Is it an open system, with public institutions such as the Unseen University or the Magician’s Guild, or clandestine, a literal ‘flying university’?
- Is magic education open to the general public (anyone who receives an owl from Hogwarts), or restricted by social class or heritage (such as Brandon Sanderson’s allomancy)?
- Are there magical academics? Are there magical scientists engaged in pure research? Are there non-magical people who study magical lore, such as the societies in Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell?
Over to you.