November 2023: Tarot Cards for Writing Inspiration
This reading is a little darker than usual (but fitting, of course, for us horror writers). I hope it inspires some delightfully terrifying tales!
Character: Page of Wands. This character, in stark contrast to the cruel and cutthroat society they exist in, is idealistic, caring, and sensitive. They have a head full of ideas, a heart full of passion, and are in possession of a dreamer’s creative spirit. They are even more vulnerable because they believe there’s good in all people, and they are not only easily manipulated, they are often abused and taken advantage of. They strive to maintain their sense of self, and refuse to adopt the violent and bloodthirsty practices mandated by their family.
Setting: XIV Temperance (Reversed). This society is definitely characterized by a “survival of the fittest” mentality, and brute force is what determines a successful citizen. The sensitive empathy of the main character has no place here, and each citizen of this warlike society is forced to undergo a series of brutal trials to prove their worth to the ruling elite. Although the main character is part of this elite by blood, they are not exempt from the trials, and the time has come for them to begin their grueling training in preparation for the ordeal.
Theme/Development: Queen of Swords (Reversed), Queen of Wands (Reversed), and Page of Cups (Reversed). The gentle and meek main character is dominated by three high-ranking family members of the ruling elite. These three have successfully passed the trials, and have obtained their position in this society not only through their success with the sword and their fists, they did so by way of their dubious talent for scheming and torture. They demand their sibling participate in the trials and, when the main character at first refuses, these three royals imprison their sibling and plan to inflict terrible tortures on them until they agree to participate.
Conflict/Climax: Nine of Swords. To say the least, the main character is undergoing a terrible crisis of spirit. The agony they face will only be paralleled by the sadistic natures of their family. It’s an impossible decision that this peaceful pacifist must face; conform to the dictates of this cruel world, and encounter both the constant physical pain of never-ending battles and the mental anguish this character will feel at having to inflict such pain and cruelty upon others. They may not even have the choice, as their family members are experts at dealing out harsh and brutal punishments on those who try to resist them.
Will your character become the dealer of death like the rest of their family, or face their own demise rather than relinquish their pacifist nature?
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“Bringer of Nightmares and Storms.” Horror writer Willow Croft is usually lurking deep in the shadows of her writer cave, surrounded by formerly feral (but still fierce!) cats for company. Visit her here: http://willowcroft.blog, or check out her other services here: https://kirsten-lee-barger.mailchimpsites.com/.