The Whisperer in Darkness
How do self-taught magicians learn spells? (This is a question I am asked almost inevitably whenever an out-of-control swamp witch has made the headlines). Many learning practitioners use books written by other magicians. Such literature is second only to direct tutoring. There is also another option, however, for learning magic is like learning a language – once you have been taught how to read, it is not essential to be taught how to write!
Put simply, the more a magician uses magic, the better they get at it. The self-taught magician wields magic as a writer wields a pen, becoming faster and more fluent as they practice it. Though the process is slower and more difficult than formal instruction it happens much more often than most people expect. The key thing to remember is that a magician must be ‘unlocked’ before they can cast magic at all, but once this has occurred the challenges of life will teach almost as many spells as can be learned from other magicians.
An excerpt from the introduction to Benin University’s Arcana through the Ages module, written by Professor Wistark Shizbitts.