From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Author Spotlight: Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Your story, “Bloodlines,” touches on the relationship between power and the abuse of power. How do you think someone who possesses great power, like the witches in the Arieta family, could stop themselves from being corrupted by the power they wield?

Well, you probably would want to have a better support system than these kids have! But I think you see some similar stuff when you have children who are bratty. It’s really not their fault. They’ve learned to push the boundaries and to get away with lots of stuff, and they’ve been rewarded for their poor behavior. So, a big chunk of it is the parents fault for allowing them to grow that way.

In the case of the Arieta family, nobody has seemed too concerned with stopping any kind of moral corruption. They go with the flow.

That’s why, in a way, Elena doesn’t know any better.

“Spells are for taking, for subduing and stealing.“ Why does magic only work to cause harm?

I think that the world that Lourdes inhabits is pretty harsh. She lives up north in Mexico, in a maquila town. Carving a living for yourself is difficult, and the only way to not end up in a factory earning minimum wage for the girls is to use magic. That’s their only talent and their only way to a semi-better life. And they’ll do anything to survive, which means many times they are mercenary and put their talents to use in negative ways. They’ve grown up only knowing how to struggle; they don’t understand the luxuries of being honest or kind, because such stuff doesn’t get you very far in the barrio. Their magic seems to reflect their environment and their lives.

When you are growing up poor, with no prospects, you’re spraying graffiti on the walls, not considering a degree in art. There’s even a certain innocence in the malice.

When Lourdes sees Paco walking with Patricia, her first thought is of how Elena feels. How is Lourdes able to be so selfless in a moment of pain?

Lourdes loves her family. She cares about Elena, despite everything. And she worries about Elena. Lourdes sees that Elena is on a dangerous path, and while Elena seems to be blinded to the long-term consequences of her anger, Lourdes understands those consequences. Lourdes is a lot less selfish than the other members of her family, and that’s probably because she’s grown up being different from the others. Her status as an outsider has allowed her to grow with a different perspective.

Will Jacinta and Lourdes be able to stay close as they get older and Lourdes becomes more powerful?

I hope they do. It seems like a positive relationship.

Would you like to tell us anything else?

Thanks for reading! And thanks for the staff at Fantasy Magazine for the chance to appear here again.

I guess I’d like to invite people over to if they want to read more of my stuff.

I want to give a shameless plugin for the ‘zine Innsmouth Free Press, which I publish. That’s it.

William Sullivan is a writer, computer programmer, and musician living in Austin, Texas. You can find his website at