Welcome to Otherworld! I hope you’ll join me on my journey into this mystical realm.
I’m fascinated by the ancient Celtic idea of an ‘otherworld’ that is situated, not in some distant, unknown region of planetary space, but here on our own earth just out of sight and within our grasp…if we really believe in it and want it enough.
Frequently, in faerie-lore, Otherworld was a subterranean world entered through caverns, hills, or mountains, and inhabited by many races and orders of beings, such as demons, shades, faeries, and gods. This magical world was divided into districts or kingdoms each with its own ruler, just like the world of mortals.
Sometimes, the Celtic Otherworld was located in the middle of the Western Ocean, as though it were the ‘double’ of the lost Atlantis. Faerie women came from that mid-Atlantic world in magic boats like spirit boats, to charm away mortal men, or else to take King Arthur when he was wounded unto death. And on that island world there was neither death, nor pain nor suffering. Instead there was only immortal and unfading youth, endless joy and feasting.
Alternatively, at rare intervals, like a phantom, Otherworld appears far out on the Atlantic. As late as the summer of 1908 it is said to have been seen from West Ireland. Or a strange invisible island, inhabited by invisible, faerie gentry, is seen once every seven years near Innishmurray.
I believe the truth is simpler and yet more complex. Otherworld exists everywhere. It is right here, alongside our mortal realm, just out of sight but easily within reach. All we need is a belief in its existence and a desire to go there.
The Otherworld in my forthcoming series for Harlequin Nocturne is a beautiful place inhabited by many races, including faeries, vampires, lycanthropes, phantoms and gods. Unfortunately, the constant battles between these warring dynasties threaten to spill over into the mortal realm.