A Little Bit of History of Scotland and the Paranormal Twist of my Novels.

Scotland is rich with heritage, with thousands of years, the folk lore runs rampant in these lochs and highlands.

Scottish Glen…

By John Irvin

            While growing up, I would often find myself sitting in my dad’s study/office and listening to stories about our ancestors that he’d uncovered that week or previously. I enjoyed these chats and miss them quite often.

            I feel like these memories and the love of reading many of the books in his library about the history of Scotland as well as the rest of Europe played a role in my zest for history and the story of our ancestors.

            My clan originated back in the early 900s A.D., according to ancient account. We played roles of advisors to the first kings and even became Kings of the original Scottish Kingdom. Of course, they were murdered and the crown stolen, hence my near pauper state of being an artist.

          The War of Independence

The Braveheart memorial near the Wallace Monument across the river from Stirling, Scotland.

            I rarely come across an individual who has not, at least, heard of the classic film directed by Mel Gibson, Braveheart. This movie not only inspired my dad and me, it inspired a nation. From what I’ve read, it made the greatest impact on Scotland since the stealing of the Stone of Destiny from London.

            Set during the national upheaval, while King Edward the Longshanks was ruling the rest of Britain and taking control of his northern neighbour, the film is about a man who refuses to mess with political matters—until it becomes personal. Going on to lead one of the greatest “rebellions” history has ever known, Sir William Wallace nearly saw his nation win her independence and freedom.

            Betrayed by a friend, he was captured by the English and sentenced to a brutal execution. But, he inspired Robert the Bruce to lead the army and years later, the Declaration of Arbroath was written, signed, and sent to the Pope in 1320. This document has been used as a nationalist inspiration for Scotland’s independence.

            It is during this time that my second novel in the Longevity series is set. Independence is about Sir Ihon (pronounced Ian) Iraes has returned from his visit to the Haven to find the land of his birth in the midst of war. He meets the famed Sir William Wallace and is caught up with the cause.


          Wallace’s Sword…

            One historical aspect the film kept accurate was the Sword of William Wallace. According to historical evidence this patriot was a big man. Wielding about a sword of five and a half feet steel took great strength and leverage. Known as the claymore, the greatsword was a chief weapon among the Scots.

The Scottish Claymore, a formidable weapon.

            It has become a favourite type of sword for me as well. Possibly the Scottish blood in me, but I also am endeared to its design. The two-handed hilt with the broad bare and the thick double-edged blade with its length, the Scottish Claymore is an exceptional tool.

            It is Wallace’s Claymore that inspired the sword used in the first two books of the Longevity series. Passed down from his father to him, Ihon enjoys the cold and hefty steel. The insignia on the claymore’s hilt is not the family crest as he used to think. The wolf symbolizes his other life, the date is the founding of the Supreme Council, and the rest is the rank his father bore in the Second Great War with the Spawn.

            I’m hoping to be able to craft this sword one day into reality. The Sword of Ihon Iraes, Knight of Scotland, Superior Officer of the Wolf-Born Army…one day.

            The Wolf-Born Capital…

            Its origins deep in ancient legends, the city of the Wolf-Born, Sanguiatro, was built shortly before the first Supreme Council was convened. Its name literally means “dark blood.” Wolf-Born carry blood so dark it’s black—a disturbing sight to any human who witnesses its spill.

            The Capital has been through two moves. Originally, it was hidden within the Turkish Highlands before Christ. It then settled near Ancient Rome’s founding and, eventually, moved with the Second Great Migration to the Highlands of Scotland.

            If you’d like to learn more, click through the link and order a copy of Longevity, Book 2: Independence. The link will take you directly to the Longevity page where I’ve got the previous books gathered as well.

Longevity, Book 2: Independence

            Also, Independence is one of the books I’m taking with me on my Toward the Pacific Book Tour come Spring of 2021. Your donations, however big or small, will help tremendously toward that goal. Thank you so much! Click through to join our supporters as my team and I prepare.


          Until next week, y’all have a great life.

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What Would the First Foreign Country Be if I Could Hop on an Airplane?

If Someone gave Me a Free Ticket to Whatever Country of My Choosing Today, I’d pick Scotland

By John Irvin

            I visited Scotland with my Dad when I was fourteen years of age. We were there for a week and we saw so much. But there was so much more we didn’t get to see.

            Among the Castles we visited, we found Edinburgh, Stirling, and Bothwell. While we were in the Bothwell Castle, I had an ethereal moment. It was both terrifying and cool at the same time.

            Dad and I were climbing one of the towers, up one of those stone spiral staircases. I stopped to look out one of the small windows notched into the stone wall. Dad kept going. I glanced over my shoulder, down the stairs.

            All of a sudden, a thought occurred to me.

Scotland the Land of Legend
A land of faeries and knights of old, of the legendary Celts, my own ancestry…

            There was a day, centuries ago, when men charged up this very staircase to man the battlemounts at the top while an invading army was attacking outside the walls.

            It was in that split moment, the hairs on my arms stood on end. I got this overpowering sensation there were people running up with swords and bows and if I didn’t get out of the way, I’d be impaled and trampled.

            I tore up those stairs and reached the top where Dad was already waiting.

            Of course, I was a fourteen year old with an overinactive imagination…then again, I’ll be thirty next month and people still say my imagination is in overdrive. But months later, we were watching the recording of Dad’s and my trip with the rest of the family. Dad had video-taped the whole trip on his little camcorder.

            In the film, we were standing outside the Castle, Dad was recording the walls and the field around them stretching between the forest surrounding the castle hill. This is when we heard them.

            In the video, the beating of war drums sounded across the hills.

            But there were no war drums.

            Could they be the ghosts of the army invading, the army I imagined was attacking when those ghosts charged up the spiral staircase after me?

            You laugh, but you never know.

            This is what I love about Scotland and the rest of the British Isles. It’s no wonder so many fairy-tales are set in that those Realms. There are so many mystifying places and mysterious haunts.

            The glens and Highlands, the marshes and rolling green hills, the forests and sea coasts, any fantasy writer like myself finds it a place filled with magic.

            My ancestry is Scots-Irish (Originally Scottish, with Irish mixed in—there’s a difference between Scotch-Irish which is the opposite). My Dad has managed to trace out lineage back to the Bonshaw Tower Irvines. Though many centuries before, we were Kings of Scotland. Malcolm and his father Duncan—the one murdered by MacBeth—were a couple blood relatives.

            Now, a thousand years later, I sit here plucking the keys on my laptop, preparing to schedule my blog posts for this upcoming week.

            I look forward to visiting the land of my ancestors again and to see the Highlands and the many other Castles…maybe even Loch Ness. Last visit, we stopped by the other iconic lake: Loch Lomond so it’s only fitting we visit Nessie.

            I found a great book on Amazon for any of you who wish to travel Scotland sometime. No it’s not my own work—though I may come out with a few travel books once I’m a world traveller again in the future—but it’s still amazing!

Travel book, The Rough Guide to the Scottish Highlands and Islands.
If you’re ever in Scotland and wish to traverse the Highlands or Isles of the Dark Island.

            But if you’re wanting fiction—other than my own fiction—then here’s a good Scottish fantasy I’ve read and enjoyed: Ghosts of Culloden Moor, Vol. 1.

            There’s a reason my Longevity series starts out in Scotland and eventually returns. Sir Ihon Iraes, a Scot born in the early 12th Century, knows not of his true bloodline, but he knows of his Scottish roots and fights for them in Book 2, Independence, coming in January of 2020!

            All links are affliliate links that I share with you, just so you’re notified. I’m requried by law to let you know. If anyone uses my links to buy something, I make a tiny percentage of the sale, which helps out a lot.

If you enjoyed this post, you should sign up for my newsletter! I don’t spam and you can unsuscribe at any time. I only send out emails on Fridays. Sign up here: SIGN UP!

I’m also a Patreon artist–the cool thing about Patreon is it allows people to support artists by monthly pledges which allow the artists to have more time to work on their own passions. Here is my account: PATREON.COM. If you’d like to support me, I would be eternally grateful!

Follow me on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram. Or email me at john@johnirvinauthor.com