One of the cooler forms of magic in The Letter Mage is one we haven't gotten to yet (and won't for a little while--it's still about four installments away). The psychologists of the College of the Human Experience practice runecasting: a form of fortune-telling that focuses the subconscious and predicts likely behavior.
The Adlerian Oracles use a form of runecasting that's slightly altered from the real thing: I incorporated elements of Tarot, and of course they use Foundation letters, not Norse runes. When we get to this point in The Letter Mage I'll have a full guide to runecasting as the backmatter, but for now...
I'm making my own runecasting set.
I'm not a grand artist by any means, but the images are supposed to look a little home-made. Each set is crafted by the caster, whether they're an artist or not.
The tiles are traditionally painted on wood (a rare resource on the Moons), and have two sides. Like Tarot cards, the runes can come up reversed for a different meaning.
I'm pretty excited about this. Most of the magic systems in The Letter Mage are things you can ostensibly practice yourself: letter magic is sigil magic, something practiced in several cultures, and prism magic is pretty much just computer science with a flashy twist.
I think crisping is the least-achievable of the magic systems, but I met an honest-to-goodness gene wizard at my last ICON, so you never know.
I won't be selling these, I'm sorry to say--there are 25 letters, and each have two forms, so a full set is 50 small paintings. I don't have time to paint quite that much. And anyway, painting's a hobby of mine. I don't really want to turn it into a business. I might sell some individual tiles if there's enough of a demand.
However, once the full guide comes out, I would love to see others' interpretations of the rune tiles!
And the fun part: I'll be offering readings at my next convention. Come join me at the Indie Star Book Festival on May 18th! I'll have all three Quartos. And maybe the 4th, if I can get it out quickly enough.