Blog Tour: Rogue in the Making (Studies in Demonology #2) by T.J. Nichols

TJ Nichols is here today promoting Rogue in the Making, the second in the Studies in Demonology series. Find out more about the inspiration for the series below! 

Reimagining our world

Urban fantasy is our world but with fantastical elements. I could’ve dropped demons and magic straight into our world and changed little else, but that didn’t make sense to me. If demons, and the magic of their world bled through to ours, our world would’ve developed differently.

Wars and invasions that we take for granted would’ve never happened.

One of the first things I did was print out a map of the world and start looking at how things might have changed. Which countries would be pro magic and which countries would be anti-magic. Who would be okay with wizards using the magic that bled through, but be anti-demon? There is no one size fits all in the Studies in Demonology universe.

My starting point for the series was that Vikings settled the east coast of America, thus Angus lives in Vinland. Why? No reason beyond me liking the little historical footnote that Vikings made it that far. Would the Vikings have used demon magic if it were available to them? In this world, yes.

Australia became New Holland—the Dutch arrived in Australia before the British. New Holland is pro-magic, and okay with regulated demon magic. To the north of them are countries that aren’t okay with magic.

The Abrahamic religions never made in out of the Middle East in this world. All religions would be different if magic and demons are real. Many of our myths that we take for granted would also be erased.

But I didn’t change everything because I think that no matter what humans would’ve still developed cars, and computers would’ve happened. Magic has it’s uses but it can’t do everything. Medical technology would be different as magic can be used to heal, but this would also create a two-tiered health system where the rich can afford warlocks to heal them and everyone has to take the long route of surgery or using unregulated wizard magic (and in Vinland wizards are seen as dangerous troublemakers).

For me, integrating magic into our world is less about creating magical rules and more about when magic appeared and how that has changed our world. If I know that, then I can build.

I did something similar in A Wolf’s Resistance, taking the idea that were wolves are real, how would that have affected WW2? Clearly, they worked for the French resistance carrying important messages. They would also had been hunted by the Germans, so they could experiment on them.

Part of the fun of world building for me is looking at how our world would be different, what would be better, what would be worse. Who would be in power, what would the wars be fought over? In the Studies in Demonology series there is a hint to a previous demon-human war that was pretty devastating. The Warlock College formed in the aftermath, but now they want to control all magic and are pushing the world to the brink of ice age and Demonside to the point of drying to achieve that.

If magic is a limited resource, it makes sense it would be something that countries want to control. Humans are still going to behave like humans magic or not. But because it’s my world and I do get to make the rules and took away the prudish behaviour the so often surrounds sex, and I made sure that being gay wasn’t even blinked at…sleeping with a demon though…well, that’s forbidden.

But even that rule had reasons, some of them rooted in the Warlock College’s need to control young warlocks, some of them from the power imbalance of a human-demon relationship and some because it’s never a good idea to sleep with the people you work closely with because if the relationship turns sour then everyone is at risk.

I could write a whole book on the world building, but I have another series to work on, so I’ll leave this here with this question.

If magic were real would you want to be one of the few who could use it? Would you want to be a demon using warlock or a demon free wizard?

Rogue in the Making (Studies in Demonology 2)

The blood sacrifices have brought rain to Demonside, but across the void, the Warlock College of Vinland is still storing and gathering magic, heedless of the warnings of the international magical community. The underground is full of warlocks who disagree with the college, but do they care about wizards and demons or only about snatching power?

With a foot in each world, Angus is no longer sure whom he can trust. The demons don’t trust humans, and even though he is learning more magic, he will never be one of them. He is human and only tolerated. Some demons would be happy to slit his throat. It’s only because his demon is powerful in his own right that Angus is alive.

Saka only has a year to prove that Angus’s people can change and that the magic taken will be rebalanced, but the demons want action. His affection for Angus is clouding his judgment and weakening his position in the tribe. Time is running out, and he must make a choice.

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TJ Nichols is an avid runner and martial arts enthusiast who first started writing as child. Many years later while working as a civil designer, TJ decided to pick up a pen and start writing again. Having grown up reading thrillers and fantasy novels, it’s no surprise that mixing danger and magic comes so easily, writing urban fantasy allows TJ to bring magic to the every day.

After traveling all over the world and Australia, TJ now lives in Perth, Western Australia.

Twitter: @TobyJNichols

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