Toothless Letter SNo, not the TV show. Although that is a great showcasing of many different types of supernatural creatures.

We’re going to talk about supernatural in the general sense. What’s the difference between fantasy and supernatural? Honesty, not a lot. the two terms are used interchangeable, and there really doesn’t seem to be any defined difference between the two. Supernatural tends to be a subcategory of fantasy, since fantasy is a broad term anyway, and from most of what I’ve seen, supernatural is a term applied to more realistic or modern works involving non-humans and magic. Elves and dragons in a fantasy kingdom? – Fantasy. Werewolves and Vampires in modern day London? – Either, but I’d tend to go for supernatural. I also find that supernatural covers the things that we believe could exist today, ghost, poltergeists, zombies, undead, those sorts of things.

And of course if you throw paranormal into the mix, it gets even more murky.

So what might you find if you look into the box labelled supernatural?

Ghosts: Think seances, ouija boards, mediums, all manners of things that we can use to talk to the spirits of the dead. This is one of the big questions – is there life after death? – and if you’re looking at ghosts then the answer is probably yes. Most people can’t see them, and they have trouble interacting with the real world, hence why you can either uses mediums, people who are attuned to the dead, or interfaces such as ouija boards to try and communicate with them. Also the start of many a horror film.

Spirits: Spirits are different from ghosts in that they were never alive. They might inhabit and work in similar ways, but a ghost is an echo of a dead person, whilst a spirit is a representation of something that was never alive, a tree, a rock, a stream, a car. Look to japan for a lot of interesting tales and mythology about spirits.

Angels/Demons: Creatures that may look humanoid (or not) but are linked to the thought of heaven and hell. Typically, I know demons can be played around with a lot, and there are many different incarnations of them, but they started out as being from hell. They have powers, beneficial or harmful, and are very invested in humans and the world.

Werewolves: People who can shift into other forms, usually a wolf, or wolf man, but sometimes other animals. Usually tied to the phases of the moon, or the moon affects them in some way, they tend to be very physical, angry creatures. But, with everything, they have been tweaked in various places by various authors. Normally written as opposed to vampires, although I’ve never heard a good explanation as to why.

Vampires: Blood drinking, good-looking, fast, strong, and most importantly, overdone. Next!

Zombies: The walking dead, shamblers, connoisseurs of brains. For some reason (often plague) the human race gets infected, dies, but keeps on walking around and wanting to eat people, particularly their brains. This sub set of creatures has also had it’s fair share of limelight, but isn’t quite as overdone as vampires. Yet.

Other monsters: The boogeyman, yeti’s, the loch ness monster. There are loads of things with powers attributed to them that are just unique beings. Fun to play around with, since they is less rigid backstory to most of these and it’s great to play around with old myths.

Telekinetic

Metaphysical phenomenon: Humans with something extra. Telekinetics, pyrokinetics, clairvoyants, mediums, all the powers that can be wielded by a human mind come under this category.

Witches and Wizards: More modern interpretations (drop the hats and the robes, and occasionally the wands) such as wiccans, pagans, druids and others can be considered supernatural forces as they harness the powers of nature and fate. I quite like this category personally, although it is hard to get some of the details right sometimes, not being a practitioner myself.

And into that you can add anything that cannot be explained by the natural laws of science, which makes it beyond, or super, natural. Which is probably quite a lot!

What would you add into my list?

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