It's bugging me that I'm forgetting something today. Something to do with... wearing a certain color? honoring part of my heritage? Maybe it'll come to me...
Meanwhile, I was wondering what mythical creature could I use as a character in a YA paranormal novel to catapult me to stardom?* (or stardoom, as I originally spelled it; aahh the irony) Vampires and werewolves abound. Angels and demons are close behind. Fairies and their fey variations are a-plenty.
Not sure what made me think of the Irish today, but I decided to look up some Celtic mythological creatures.
Leprechauns would appear, at first glance, to be cliche. They've been commercialized to death on cereal boxes and sports teams. They abound in poems and short stories. But I couldn't find a single modern YA novel with a significant leprechaun character. Come on, people, leprechauns are hard to catch but if you can, you get three wishes! Or a new pair of shoes! They may be old and wizened in appearance, but they are supposedly fabulous dressers, very debonair.
It might be tricky to turn a leprechaun into a sexy male love interest - but he could play a great antagonist. Or your MC's clever friend. Maybe a paranormal negotiator. And who says we have to keep to traditional descriptions, anyway? Why not a tall, handsome leprechaun half-blood? Hmmm.... (image removed of famous actor in leprechaun hat)
Now let's look at the gancanagh, also known as a love talker. We already know there's some potential here, if you've ever read Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series. Niall is a gancanagh faerie, but there's definitely room for more of these characters in YA. The Gancanagh description from Monstropedia:
Gancanagh seduced young maidens with his enchanting voice and whispered nonsense then would promptly disappear, leaving the maiden to cry away for him. Few of his victims live for very long afterwards dying of despair and a broken heart. To meet him meant bad luck, and whoever was ruined by ill-judged love was said to have been with the gancanagh.
In traditional lore, a Gancanagh is supposed to look similar to a leprechaun, complete with a clay pipe. But a creature that's called a Love Talker, and can make humans girls pine after him, even to their death? Move over sexy vampire, this guy sounds like serious competition. With a little imagination, maybe someone like this? (image removed of young man smoking pipe)