This continues our interview with Live and Let Fly author Karina Fabian. (Part one can be seen here.)
3. How do you generally reconcile religion with the magic portions of the world?
In a sense, I treat the Faerie as alien species. Humans in the Mundane (ie, our world) cannot practice magic. God simply didn’t create us for that. There are exceptions, of course, which we already know about: God has granted miracles for the intercession of some; and black magic is possible at the price of your soul. But ‘swish and flick” magic ala Harry Potter? Not for us, sorry.
Magic is also a kind of natural force, and Fearie creatures need it to practice magic and even to survive. This is going to play a big role in Live and Let Fly, as Vern and Grace are going to have to travel far from the Gap, which is their only source of magic in the Mundane world.
4. So how does this world differ from ours? Aside from mythical creatures (Dragons, good nuns), being real?
There are plenty of good nuns in reality, thank you. And Sister Grace has her not-so-good moments, too. When she and Vern first met, the schoolkids were afraid of her. It’s in my story “Mishmash” in Book of Tentacles.
Because Satan is such a present force in Faerie, the Church never divided, so there is only one singular, Catholic faith. Martin Luther did exist, but he and the Vatican worked things out—some things that took us until Vatican II to implement actually happened earlier there. Their world wars were not just about nations wanting to gain power, but about Satan’s forces trying to get a stronghold. The ancient gods are alive and well (called demigods there); they usually know their place and are good leaders or do whatever they are skilled in. Athena, for example, is in the Mundane studying genetics at the moment, though she’s also done a lot of chemistry—that’s important to Live and Let Fly, although I won’t say why. Spoilers. The Church is not territorial, but it is political in the sense that rulers defer to them. Excommunication is a very serious thing in Faerie, not just for the monarch, but for the kingdom.
The New World is very different. The Aztecs still rule Mesoamerica; there’s an Iroquois nation which is styled much like the US, with greater states rights. They have their demigods and spirits—Vern’s had some run-ins with Coyote, but he and Quetzalcoatl get along after their big fight for the souls of the Aztecs (found in the magazine 10Flash.com). However, they are Catholic.
5. How much work did you have to put into creating the entire world?
As much work as the next story demands. The world keeps growing as I come up with some new case or some new situation to put Vern and Sister Grace into.