When C. S. Lewis wrote the third novel of his Space Trilogy, That Hideous Strength, he deliberately tried to link the setting with the works of his friends, J. R. R. Tolkien and Charles Williams. Thus, some of the characters in the novel have both read Williams' Arthurian poetic cycle, Taliessin through Logres and The Region of the Summer Stars, and belong to Logres, the spiritual community described by Williams in his poems. They also deal with magic from Tolkien's Numenor, though Lewis spelled it "Numinor," never having seen it written.
Well, what happens if you try to combine the settings of Lewis, Tolkien, and Williams into one modern fantasy setting? And suppose you season it with a bit of Tim Powers and Neil Gaiman. The result is a setting I call the "Inkliverse," after the main sources, who were all Inklings.
Since these three Inklings were all solidly Christian, and this is reflected in the works I draw on, I have termed the setting a work of "sanctifiction," which is science fiction (or fantasy, depending on your religious convictions) where the science involved is theology. The term was coined by Meg Yang Huoyang, for her setting, dubbed by her collaborators "the Megiverse." The Megiverse spans all time from the creation into the far future, draws on Lewis, Boule's Planet of the Apes, Baley's The Soul of the Robot, and Miller's Canticle of Leibowitz, along with world mythologies and other sources.
It is partly in the hopes of getting the Megiverse onto the web that I am posting the Inkliverse, which is a much smaller endeavor, almost, but not quite, a subset of the Megiverse.
Characters in the Inkliverse are people living in the modern world but on the weird side of the street. They are magicians, or supernatural beings, or members of secret conspiracies run by Heaven or Hell. The aeonian war of good versus evil thunders around them, as it does around us, but they are much nearer the front lines.
We don't notice this because of the Sundering, a twist of luck or fate that hides magic and the supernatural from public view. But not from private encounter, which is why the ordinary world is full of rumors from behind the Sundering—myths, and legends, and fairy tales. Behind the Sundering hide all the classes of fabulous beings and whole (tiny) nations of (relatively) ordinary human beings. They live in the woods where you never bother to go, or five doors down in the houses you never happen to visit, on in the places on the map you stare at briefly but never visit.
(Click ◊ for full outline.)
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Copyright © Earl Wajenberg, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2018