Wyrzog is a feisty Book Wyrm that lurks in my bookshelves and slithers about my many piles of much-loved books. She has an annoying habit of eating bookmarks, but will hiss and snap if I even consider dog-earring a page.
Wyrzog is surprisingly open to contentious grammar and the odd typo: she have seen humans change their language over thousands of years, and admires it all. Wyrms love stories, big or small. They love books with illustrations, illuminations and those with beautiful maps folded within.
‘Wyrm’ – a species of dragon with no legs or wings. The most famous kind of wyrm are sea-serpents, like Orkney’s very own Mester Stoorworm, but not all are ocean-dwelling creatures.
Wyrzog tends to hoard books with strong, female characters and prefers non-traditional fairytales where the princess and dragons live happily ever after. She has an insatiable appetite for literature but, despite how excited she gets about a book, she will never, ever give away a plot ending. Those who do will find their toes nibbled.
Zog the (very handsome) orange dragon is her personal hero.
Shh! Don’t startle this shy creature. For though this wee wild unicorn tiptoes through the wilderness as quietly as can be, it too can be fierce and feisty.
With cloven hooves, a wiggly beard and long lush lion’s tail, this is far from your domesticated unicorn. A beautifully rare beast of Scotland, these unicorns love to roam forests, nibble flowers and occasionally give chase to a hairy haggis!
A very few well guarded wild unicorns do roam the islands of Orkney…
I was lucky to spot this foal, just on the cusp of adulthood, silently sipping from a loch. Perhaps for safety, or simply for the magic of it, wild unicorns are most active at dawn and dusk. The latter is known locally as grimleens, and is truly an enchanted time of day for humans and faeries alike.
Grimleens: Orcadian dialect for twilight, dusk, the magical moment between day and night.
Head to where the four-leaf clover springs up from the ground, where there’s a soft tinkling in the breeze, where rainbows bloom in the sky…
And if you are quiet, patient and granted a large dose of luck, you may be able to spot a wild unicorn too!
Please note: Do not follow directions from local trows, they’ll send you on a wild unicorn race. This usually involves the dizzying heights of Hoy, a boggart attack at Birsay and a possible drowning in Stenness loch. It’s not fun.
I’ve got some more Doodle Monsters for you to get scribbling on!
These mini monsters need a magic wand – or a pencil – to make them magnificently monstrous! Doodle a new ginormous nose, sharp go-faster spikes, two big twitchy ears and some flappity-flap wings to whizz around the clouds!
When you’re finished, you can also create your own mish-mash monster full of squiggly legs, googly eyes, gnashing teeth, and squiggly claws!
What weird and wonderfuss stuff would you find in a witch’s bottle?
Eyeballs for potions? Newt tails for breakfast? The tears of naughty children for a cauldron-carrot-cake recipe? Whether it be ghost farts or demon giggles, doodle something you would capture and keep for a magic spell or ghastly witching brew.
Top Tip: Witches can squeeeeeeeze almost anything inside a witchy bottle – the only limit is your imagination!
You’ll need every colouring pencil, crayon, felt tip and gel pen in the house!
Doodle tiny decorations – like shooting stars and lightning bolts – and then colour them in. Or your unicorn could simply be stripy or spotty or maybe zigzagged like a zebracorn! All you need to do is think all the colours of the rainbow and then some!
You’ll also need to dream up a sparkling unicorn name and, if you can stomach it, doodle some weird unicorn poo! Unicorn poo like jelly beans, cupcakes, pongy rainbow puffs! Ew!