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Blogs from 2011

The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Tree

on 19 December 2011. Posted in 2011

img hecate family treeClick Image to Download (PDF, 4.4MB)I’ve been asked when and how (and why on earth?) would I try to make a family tree that spanned about four thousand years of history, and was so complicated that even the most Deluxe of the Exclusive Family Tree software programs out there couldn’t begin to accommodate it, at least not in the ordinary, top down manner. (You know: where your grandmother and grandfather are at the top, and your mom and her brother, your Uncle Jack, are underneath, each with a spouse, and you and your two sisters and Aiden your little brother are on the bottom, with your obnoxious cousin Sean is right across from you, on the same line, but under Uncle Jack.)

I once coaxed a computer into drawing a shorter version of the family tree of Hecate Witch-Queen, and her two daughters, Hellewise Hearth-Woman the Mother of all Witches, and Maya Dragonslayer, the First Vampire for me. It came out on sixteen pieces of paper, I believe, that I had to put together like a puzzle. It covered the floor like a new rug and was completely impractical for reference (unless I wanted to paste it up like new wallpaper).

Before I say anything about how the family tree finally worked out, I’d like to explain why I started it. It’s for the characters in the Night World, and anyone who’s read the Night World series has undoubtedly already recognized the names Maya and Hellewise. But I started the tree before I knew that Maya and Hellewise existed. I started it for SECRET VAMPIRE, the first book in the Night World series; I did it for Poppy, the heroine. Or, to be more precise, for James Rasmussen, Poppy’s vampire soulmate, who was, I later decided, from the Redfern family, the strongest family of vampires in the world. I gave him a mother and a father, because I wanted him to have a history, and so I made him one of the lamia. Lamia (as far as I know) is really only an old word for vampire, but Night World lamia are vampires who were never human, who can breathe and eat and make more little lamia, like humans. But they’re still vampires, and their need to feed on the blood of mortal beings is just as strong as the made vampires, whose name is self-explanatory.

Made vampires are people like Poppy, who started as a human girl who had terminal and very aggressive cancer. She chose to let James make her into a vampire instead of living on for a few weeks or months in terrible pain and then dying from the cancer. She took a gamble, because even for a teen, the exchange of blood doesn’t always work. There’s an element of risk that the human being changed won’t be able to endure the process and will just burn out, as happens with all humans over eighteen or nineteen. Made vampires can’t grow a year older or an inch taller, where lamia can turn the aging process off and on as they like.

But back to the family tree. I wanted something special about the lamia, so I decided that they all (except the suburbanites who were trying to fit in) should have names of natural things: plants, animals, or minerals—gems, jewels, stones. That’s why the notorious lamia Ash Redfern had three sisters: Rowan, Kestrel and Jade. And that’s why James’ mother, a conservative Redfern is named Madder (a plant) and called Maddy. His father, from a less prestigious and more liberal line, the Rasmussens, is named Jasper, which just happens to be a mineral, but is also an ordinary human name.

I figured this much out for SECRET VAMPIRE. But if you look at them, in square C-17 of Version 1 of the family tree, they are a tiny island, with very little importance.

I really began to take the family tree seriously with the next book, DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS. In that book, Ash Redfern’s sisters tell Mary-Lynnette, the heroine, about a very important (and still very much alive) lamia called Hunter Redfern, who established many of the rules for the Redferns and the other lamia after he came to be the most powerful vampire in the world, save one—and she was only a legend to most.   Hunter Redfern had allied the two families, the Redferns and the Harmans, by getting a witch, Maeve Harman, to do a blood-tie ceremony with him, making the two families relatives after many millennia of separation. He did it because like the patriarchal chauvinist that he was, he wanted a son to succeed him,. His wife Modesty was dead, and he had only daughters: Garnet, Lily, and Dove (Quinn fans take note). Unfortunately, even after the ceremony, Maeve Harman had a girl: Roseclear Redfern Harman. So after that, all Harmans and Redferns—the crème de la crème of vampires and witches had a little of the other clan in them.

Finally, in SPELLBINDER, the heroine Thea Harman tells the story of Hecate and her two daughters and I had a family tree that spanned many thousands of years and a headache. After that I was careful that everyone fit somewhere into the family tree I had outlined, even Delos Redfern, Wild Power and vampire from BLACK DAWN had his own little kingdom. Even lost witches like Gillian Lennox (Harman) from DARK ANGEL and Iliana Harman from WITCHLIGHT had their places. And I noticed something interesting. All the protagonists in the Night World books were falling into the same vertical line: they were all related and they were all about the same age. They’re in red on the family tree that Usok so cleverly mapped onto a system of reference.

I hope to do the same thing for the shapeshifters, although information about them is much more sparse. STRANGE FATE will clear up much of that confusion, and at last there will be enough about werewolves and other ’shifters to put onto paper. Right now, most people know that Galen Drache of the First Family of the Shapeshifters, whose chosen shape is a leopard to match his soulmate Keller’s black panther, has a cousin named Kierlan Drache who also chose a shape in the large cat family. And if you look at the very bottom of Hecate’s family tree you’ll find the vampire who is also a witch, although he hasn’t cultivated his powers, Mal Redfern Harman. (Witches are matrilineal—they pass the name through the female line). They’re the two soulmates of the human girl Sarah Strange.

I’d like to thank Mr. Usok Choe for this magnificent rendition of the Harman/Redfern Family Tree.  You could actually play a game on this board: give a letter and number and then someone would have to make up a story about a person in that square.  Of course, you’d have to keep to the A, B, C, and Ds pretty much or allow descriptions to also be part of names.

By the way, please don’t keep asking when STRANGE FATE will come out. I appreciate your eagerness, but every time I answer an email or Forum query about it, it takes time, and, more important, concentration away from my working at the book. It literally sets me back a day for each query, because I can’t get back into Sarah’s mind. I’m writing as fast as I can. And don’t believe any release date unless it comes from me. Thank you very kindly.                                                        

Comments   

 
Tina Dixon
0 # Interesting xDTina Dixon 2011-12-19 19:24
Wow, I enjoyed looking at the (slightly confusing) family tree. It's interesting to see some names I don't recognise, yet how they tie in to the other characters makes a sort of sense. Did you really only vaguely draft the family for SV? Wow, I always had images of it being an incredible well thought pre-considered idea. The fact that you made it so is brilliant xD (Speaking of images, the mental one I have of you now is amusing - you on your knees on the living room floor, with your hair up, moving names about trying to make sense of the family tree and pulling at your hair as it isn't working. Random, I know, but amusing xD)
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Tina Dixon
+6 # Interesting xD Part 2Tina Dixon 2011-12-19 19:25
(Sorry, comment was too long! xD)

I'm not asking about Strange Fate's release, but seeing Quinn's name with "(STRANGE FATE)" next to it? Made. My. Day ;D I love him, his character, his soulmate, everything about him. So I'm glad we're going to see a lot of him ;D
Keep writing, and can I just say, I LOVE your work. Yeah, I know, I wouldn't be on this site if I didn't, but I adore it. Thank you! Thank you so much, for giving us such amazing books, and worlds for us to escape into. You are my favourite author out there :D
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Raiyan
0 # ??Raiyan 2011-12-20 01:28
god .....this is soooo confusuin...LOL :lol:
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Katlen
+2 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeKatlen 2011-12-20 13:01
Family tree is truly....Amazin g! I could only imagine how difficult it was putting this family tree together. I had an idea by reading all your books. No spoilers.
Mr. Usok Choe thank you for all your work. :-)
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Administrator
+1 # RE: RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeAdministrator 2011-12-20 13:12
Quoting Katlen :
Family tree is truly....Amazing! I could only imagine how difficult it was putting this family tree together. I had an idea by reading all your books. No spoilers.
Mr. Usok Choe thank you for all your work. :-)

Oh no, please, don't thank me. My contribution here is very insignificant compare to years of work put in by Lisa to come up with this. I'd go cross-eyed trying to make sense of it all and Lisa can recite this whole thing from memory I'd betcha. :lol:
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Natty
0 # coolNatty 2011-12-20 14:39
so whens strange fate coming out?! :D no i am just kidding i dont want to make you answer that because then it will take longer for you to finish it(and that would be torture)
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Natty
0 # cool part2Natty 2011-12-20 14:43
forgot to write this earlier but...
i love night world!!!!!!!!!! !!!(and all your other books)
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Shantelle
+5 # AshShantelle 2011-12-22 00:44
Seeing Ash's name and the (Strange Fate) just made my day! :lol: I love him! He is so cool! :D
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Ariadne
0 # Lots of layers!Ariadne 2011-12-23 09:32
I've always found it interesting to think about who fits in where in the grand family tree, and also love the idea of playing a story-making game with the Redferns and Harmans - but whew, what a complicated family they have! I've been known to try and trace fictional characters' trees, if only to get things straight in my own head.

I actually use a software application called GenoPro for my writing efforts. It's great for complicated trees, like ones involving unorthodox royal successions. It also has the added benefit of being able to trace emotional relationships and health conditions.

Disclaimer: I don't work for and am not paid by the people who developed GenoPro; I've just been using it for a very long time, and really like it.
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T
+2 # AwesomeT 2011-12-29 08:09
I love the family tree. It must have taken so much time and concentration. I really like seeing how people are connected to one another! I have always been curious about a lot of the pairings in Nightworld such as Red Fern's father, Hunter's first wife and Delos's mother and it is so cool to see it all laid out. Awesome job!

(I was only confused on one small part, I thought Chervil was Hunter's son but the tree shows him as being older).
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rachel rodriguez
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Treerachel rodriguez 2011-12-31 11:43
WOW just WOW i cant wait to look at the tree and L.J. sorry about the headaches and about some info on Mal and Kierlan i think i fell in love with this book!!!!
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rachel rodriguez
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Treerachel rodriguez 2011-12-31 23:43
ok i just lookek at it for 2012 and im just thinking HOW DID U DO IT I MEAN JUST WOW I CAN SEE HOW U GOT HEADACHES NOW just WOW
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rachel rodriguez
0 # RE: RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Treerachel rodriguez 2011-12-31 23:46
ok some people can read it but i would just go cross eyed trying
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Vanessa Taillon
0 # Thank you!!Vanessa Taillon 2012-01-05 16:32
Thank you so much for doing this family tree! Looking at it makes me really excited for STRANGE FATE and it's very helpful. I can't wait for it to come out so I can read it. I swear, when I start reading the volumes from the NIGHT WORLD series I can't put them down until I finish them. I love your books! :lol:
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Grecia Anaya
+1 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeGrecia Anaya 2012-01-10 14:05
I love this!!! so glad that old night world characters will back in strange fate!
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Ishie
+3 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeIshie 2012-01-11 14:10
How exciting to see Hecate's family tree! I always thought the idea of Hecate Witch-Queen and her descendants was mysterious and fascinating, so it's great to see it set out.

Just a couple of things, if I'm reading the tree right - in the books, isn't Iliana a descendant of Elspeth, not Emmeth, and through her mother, not father? Also isn't Chervil the son of Hunter Redfern?
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Vianey  Contreras
0 # WOW!!!!Vianey Contreras 2012-01-14 18:25
OMG... This is amazing!!!!!! I love it... its so awesome that you made a family tree for the Harman and Redfern family tree I always wanted to see how each character connected as far as their bloodline at least. And I hope you do get the chance to that for the Shapeshifters especially with Strange Fate coming out I'm sure everyone is intrigued to know more about the Dragons. LOVE your books!!!!!
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Meli
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeMeli 2012-01-18 09:16
Thank you Lisa and Mr. Usok Choe for the hard/great work :-) If you ever have time to make the 'shifters tree, it'd be awesome :D

(I must confess I’m also confused on Hunter/Chervil, Sylvia and Iliana; and I’m a bit surprised not to find the “uncle Galen”, “aunt Gerdeth” and “cousin Celestyn” mentioned in Spellbinder :oops: :oops: )
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kait
-6 # reallyyy?kait 2012-01-21 16:57
you do understand that you could have probably finished the book by now if you didn't make a family tree, right? don't get me wrong its cool and all but i would rather read the new book to see how it ends rather than waiting another year....
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Administrator
+1 # RE: reallyyy?Administrator 2012-01-22 14:22
Quoting kait:
you do understand that you could have probably finished the book by now if you didn't make a family tree, right? don't get me wrong its cool and all but i would rather read the new book to see how it ends rather than waiting another year....


This chart was started years ago over long duration as a reference material for her books. She did not spend time "out of her new book schedule" to create this. In other words she did not rob Peter to pay Paul. The time spent adding the graphic treatment was something that I have done. However, for you to come into this author's "home" and b!tch that her book schedule is out of whack with yours (never mind that none of us would ever know the internal pressure she is being put forth from various publishers and their obligations) is just asinine. Are you that obtuse??!! Now, tell me how that foot of yours is tasting like in your mouth?!
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True Fan
+1 # RE: really?True Fan 2012-01-28 16:31
Quoting kait:
you do understand that you could have probably finished the book by now if you didn't make a family tree, right? don't get me wrong its cool and all but i would rather read the new book to see how it ends rather than waiting another year....



It sounds as if you are one of the second generation reading LJ Smith as there are many of us who starting reading when the books first came out and have been waiting A LOT longer than you. If the author feels the need to prolong it - so be it. Its better than Stephenie Meyer choosing to not release the book at all. True fans will continue to read - regardless of time passing.
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Angel
0 # RE: RE: really?Angel 2012-01-30 19:25
Quoting kait:
you do understand that you could have probably finished the book by now if you didn't make a family tree, right? don't get me wrong its cool and all but i would rather read the new book to see how it ends rather than waiting another year....


I'm one of the first generation of readers, and think it's sad when impatient readers pressure an author for a book. What would you rather? A half-arsed effort that LJ puts out now, or a good story that she's satisfied with when she's good and ready? Show a little maturity and be patient. Good work takes time
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Fred M.
0 # Omg!! That a lotFred M. 2012-01-27 20:35
Woah... It's like an explosion of people every 30-50 years... Too bad Im not related to any of these people... Oh well.. But I know a goddard whose mother (Roxanne) is named after an ancestor of the same name. That's pretty cool
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Fred M
0 # whoa!!Fred M 2012-01-28 07:18
That's AMAZING!!!! Now I KNOW it's true that L.J. wrote everything in her books for a reason! I think I'll spend another 20 minutes looking at this before i go.........
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Dorothy
0 # So HappyDorothy 2012-02-01 13:20
All I want to say is that I AM SO HAPPY and can not wait for STRANGE FATE! I really loved and still love this series. With all the books I have read ... all of the characters, stories had stayed with me. I thought it extremely entertaining words can not express how I feel about this series! I can not wait to see STRANGE FATE on the shelf and ready for me to purchae it :lol: !
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Danielle
0 # CoolDanielle 2012-02-03 20:38
WOW. I can't believe you actually did the family tree. I thought it was interesting to see how the family came to be and see how the line progressed. I love how you put the names of the books the people were in by them. And I just wanted to say you are an AMAZING author.
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AishaN
0 # some questionsAishaN 2012-02-11 11:59
Yay! I was wondering if you would ever let fans know the entire family tree of the almost-incestou s Redfern/Harmans . It's obvious from reading all the books that you have clearly put a lot of thought into how they're related.

Why is Maya called DragonSlayer? If this is explained in Strange Fate, then fair enough, because I don't remember that name being used once in the preceeding nine books.

Can't wait for the shifter/werewol f tree!
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Lisabeth
0 # Kirelan.Lisabeth 2012-02-18 17:37
Thank you so much for giving us this family three, L. J. Smith. I hope you are doing well under all the pressure lately. Remember that we fans (I, at least) support you and are here for you like a distant support. :-).

Bur now I can't stop wondering which big cat Kierlan is! I'm so very happy that you gave us a hint :-). I hoped he was a big cat when I read he was a shapeshifter. :-D. I love cats, you see, because they have such a big personality. So now I've been going trough (reading about) some of the big cats. Jaguar, leopard, lion, tiger... That's the biggest ones, that is alive, that is. I wonder if Kierlan could be one of the instincted cats. How fun wouldn't it be if a shapeshifter could be a Smilodon? With those huge teeth (would probably make the vampires jealous :-P).

Kierlan could be a tiger. They are very territorial and aggresive. And Ash did call him a "bigger rover"...

WHAT DO YOU GUYS THINK?
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Jen Robinson
0 # YESSJen Robinson 2012-02-23 14:29
this is so AWESOME! if only my computer would stop freezing and being stupid so i could actually read it! ill stop asking about strange fate or worrying about it. the longer it takes to write the better it will be! kind of want it to take it longer. cause i know once ill get it ill finish it in a heartbeat! cant wait to see how all of the characters come together. it will be one epic EPIC ending.
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Radde
0 # OMGRadde 2012-02-25 05:11
This is so confusing! Can somebody help me to understand the family tree? PS. Love the books! Today i just finished all of them (9 books) :)
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sam
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Treesam 2012-03-01 08:37
Just got finished with the night world books i couldn't put them down! They are so well written. I absolutely can not wait for the next one. each story was better and better so glad to have found these books keep up the good work and of course let us know as soon as u can when ur done with Strange fate!!!! Oh btw the names are phenomenal!!!!
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christinask
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family Treechristinask 2012-03-02 09:04
the family tree is actually very helpfull in remembering how's related to who!
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Maiya
0 # RE: The Harman and Redfern Family Tree OR Hecate Witch-Queen’s Family TreeMaiya 2012-03-04 08:10
Really REally Really excited for Strange Fate :) Sarash has two soulmates? Anyway you write really great books :)
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Erin
0 # Question :)Erin 2012-03-28 15:06
Lol, okay I'm picky. In The Chosen, Quinn says that Chervil is Hunter Redfern's only son and that Hunter thought he died (but really didn't) then when I look at this I saw that Chervil was born before Hunter was, like 500-ish years before. Hunter even says it in Black Dawn.
Also thank you for telling us Ash's parents names.
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