I love to infuse history and magic in my books and series. In my Harlow Cassidy Magical Dressmaking Mystery series, Harlow is a descendant of Butch Cassidy. I created an alternate history in which Butch tosses a coin into an ancient Argentinian fountain, wishing his female descendants are charmed.

Harlow sews the wishes and dreams of people into the garments she creates. Her mother has a green thumb, and her grandmother is a goat-whisperer. And then there’s Loretta Mae. Whatever she wants, she gets.

In my Book Magic series, there is a 2000 year old Irish curse, ancient deities, the Tuatha dé Danann, and the divination of bibliomancy.

There are so many reasons to add a little history and magic to your writing. Here are just a few:

1. Engaging and captivating plots. Adding magic and history to a novel can make the plot more interesting and intriguing. Readers are often fascinated by the mystical and unknown, and combining it with historical elements can create a truly compelling storyline. Trust me. Based on reader feedback I’ve gotten, it’s true!

2. Enhanced world-building. Magic and history can be used to create unique and truly immersive fictional worlds. When you incorporate magical elements, you can expand the boundaries of your story. This means you can transport readers to new and exciting realms. Adding history means adding depth and authenticity to the world.

3. Exploration of themes. Magic and history provide great opportunities for authors to explore big themes such as power, morality, belief systems, and cultural dynamics. You can go a step further by reimagining historical events with magical elements. Stephen King does this in his book 11/22/63 with a magic portal that allows for the opportunity to stop the Kennedy assassination.

4. Character development. When an author incorporates magic and history into their writing, they can develop their characters in very distinct and interesting ways. Characters may have unique magical abilities. Their choices and actions may be influenced or impacted by historical events, or they may even become figures of historical significance themselves. All of this can help authors delve deeper into understanding their characters’ strengths, weaknesses, motivations, and the complexity of their hero’s journeys.

5. Symbolism and allegory. Magic and history are great tools to add symbolism and conflicts. They provide a metaphorical framework to explore important topics–think oppression, liberation, social injustice, or the quest for knowledge. When you infuse these elements into your novels, you automatically weave in ways for your readers to connect your story to the real world.

6. Cultural richness. Incorporating magic and history allows authors to create diverse and culturally rich narratives. You can explore cultures, folklore, and traditions, all of which can result in a vibrant and inclusive portrayal (and exploration) of humanity.

7. Escapism and entertainment. Readers often turn to novels as a means of escape and entertainment. I definitely do. Magic and history can transport readers and can captivate the imagination, which makes for a more satisfying reading experience.

8. Originality and differentiation. Including magic and history in novels can set the work apart from others in the same genre. So many readers have commented on how unique my Book Magic books are. In fact, Midwest Book Review said the are “deftly crafted and impressively original novel(s) by an author with a genuine flair for originality. While certain to be an unusual, immediate and enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of anyone who enjoys Women’s Friendship Fiction, Cozy Animal Mysteries, or Supernatural Mysteries…”

This is most certainly because of the history and magic and they way thees two elements are combined. They offer a unique blend of elements that intrigue my readers, especially those who are looking for something fresh and innovative. This differentiation can help you find your niche and build a dedicated fan base. It’s proven true for me!

9. Emotional resonance. Magic and history can evoke strong very emotions in readers. The reviews I get on my Harlow Cassidy and Book Magic series convey this. Whether it’s the awe of witnessing extraordinary magical feats, the empathy generated by exploring historical moments of triumph, tragedy, or resilience, or the creative way you use these two elements in your writing (see #8), you have the potential to touch the hearts and minds of your readers. This is how you build a loyal following.

10. Enduring appeal. Magic and history are timeless elements that have enchanted readers forever and ever. When you incorporate them into your novels, you can tap into humanity’s never-ending fascination with the mystical and the past. This will all but guarantee a readership that appreciates and seeks out your stories. You’re giving them exactly what they need and want.

If you’ve ever wondered how to set your writing and books apart from the competition, consider adding history and magic to your books. It’ll do the same things for you that it does for readers.

Happy writing!

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