When writing our paranormal thriller, Leon’s Lair, I did some research on witches because we have a main good guy, Wolfgang Ulrich, who is a what? … a Wizard? Sorcerer? Magician? Mage? Warlock. Witch?
It seems all of these appellations are fine if your witch has good intentions … with the exception of the term warlock.
Most people think a warlock is simply the male equivalent of a witch. I was assured in some of my research that witch applied to both male or female. However, it bothered me to call Wolf a witch. It seemed female to me, so I started out calling him a warlock and found that was a big mistake.
The way I found out was when I was posting fun stuff on our Facebook Author Page having to do with facts about vampires, witches and warlocks. I was severely reprimanded by one visitor. It seems calling our male witch a warlock was a big no-no. People in the Wiccan religion object to that term.
So I started looking into it. What I found was there are many people who claim to be witches. I mean, there is even a school on the Internet – Witch School International – for the education and training needed to become an accomplished mage.
I also found that people who really know their stuff tell you that warlocks, as a Christian legend, were dark or villainous, consorts of the devil and flew on pitchforks rather than on brooms. Some say that in Old English a warlock meant an oath breaker, which was a major offense when someone lived in a time where a man’s word might be all you had to judge him. Warlocks in this sense were liars who could not be trusted, and they were often exiled or reviled by those who knew of their deeds.
In modern Wiccan groups, the word warlock is often used to refer to someone who has broken vows, or who is a practitioner of dark magic. It’s a very insulting and derogatory term in these circles and shouldn’t be used lightly.
Even in modern fiction the idea of a warlock remains dark and mystical. In games like World of Warcraft and Dungeons and Dragons, the warlock tends to be dark if not outright evil and diabolical, with power gained from infernal sources, of or relating to hell.
The difference between a warlock and a wizard varies, depending on who you talk to, and in both cases, the terms refer to a practitioner of magic. Some people use the terms “wizard” and “warlock” interchangeably, along with terms like sorcerer and mage, while others use these terms in very specific ways. In the Wiccan community in particular, the word “warlock” has a very specific and offensive meaning.
“Warlock” is an older word than “wizard,” coming from the Old English waerloga, which means “oath breaker,” while wizard comes from the Middle English word for “wise.” The etymologies of the words illustrate the different ways in which people sometimes view them.
Wizards are generally viewed as good people with strong moral codes who also offer wise advice and assistance, and many fantasy stories feature a kindly wizard who helps the characters achieve their goals – like Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings.
And who does not love Gandalf?
Now Leon in Leon’s Lair, on the other hand, is bad to the bone. He is not a warlock but a vampire.
If you would like to meet him, and our wizard, Wolfgang Ulrich, a leader with the secret society called The Association for Paranormal Creatures, and find out what he and his associates propose to do about Leon, pick up a copy of Leon’s Lair.
What would you do if your vacation cruise ship was being attacked and you were certain you would to be killed?
Would you fight? Would you hide? Would you try to escape?
LEON’S LAIR is available in Kindle and paperback versions on Amazon