Laura Daligan's Interview with 'Faery Tale' author Signe Pike for FAE Magazine...

As the Cornish rain soaked us to the bone, sounds of laughter, music and merriment were all that could be heard from the 3 Wishes Faery Festival this year. We’re an irrepressible bunch, us faery folk!  As I wander across the festival grounds looking for the American author, Signe Pike, I find she has also been looking for me, and when we finally meet I’m greeted by a warm, radiant and open individual, whom I feel immediately at ease with. We head for the shelter of ‘Mermaid’s Cave’, a beautiful, undercover cove embellished with crystals and sea shells – the perfect place to interview a lady whose life is now defined by enchantment and magic!

Signe Pike is the author of the hugely acclaimed true story ‘Faery Tale’; it’s her first book, and indeed her first official venture into the world of the fae.  As we get cosy in ‘Mermaid cave’, Signe enthuses that she absolutely loves the Faery festival, and that the people she has met here have all been so beautiful.

Signe has travelled the world researching this book, which is her search for enchantment in a modern world, and so I asked her, what inspired her to write ‘Faery Tale’ in the first place?

Signe:Well I was living in Manhattan, working as a book editor, and I was feeling really disillusioned with the state of the world after the death of my father, which was quite sudden. I began to look around and I realised that I wasn’t really living my life the way I wanted to, and much more I felt that with the war and the politics in America at that time, many of us had almost fallen  asleep; it was like we were sleepwalking through life to some extent. And so, I started to think - this isn’t the happy ever after I hoped for! As a little girl I believed in magical creatures, and I thought that ‘Once Upon a Time’ actually meantonce upon a time.When I was a child I had this sense of knowing that these mythical beings were real and I realised I wanted to recapture that magic in my life. As I was a sceptic when I started writing this book, I thought that if I could find evidence of something as fanciful as faeries existing, it meant there was the possibility ofeverything else,such as perhaps communicating with my father, or knowing that he was OK. So that’s how the book began, and little did I know that once I stepped foot on the faery path with this book, that everything would change!

Life did indeed change for Signe! She quit her job and relocated to the more rural South Carolina, and then travelled from Mexico to England, Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man in search of Faeries. Her New York friends must have wondered what on earth was going on, but it wasn’t until Signe was wandering the woods and old pubs of England, meeting with wonderful people (including Faery Royalty, Brian and Wendy Froud) that she realised she was no longer in control of her journey and that there was a greater force guiding her, which she (and I!) believe was the Faeries.

So, where did Signe’s actual search for faeries begin?

Signe: I started accidently in Mexico, when I was there on vacation, and I thought if I can find evidence of Faeries in Mexico then there was hope of going to places like the UK which is so well known for its faery law.

Whilst in Mexico Signe discovered all about the Mexican ‘Los Aluxes’ (‘little people’). She realised that they weren’t at all like the idealised cutesy faery type, but more like short, hairy, moody trolls!

She discovered all of this whilst using the hotel bathroom late one night...


Signe: I had been out asking people about the Aluxes all day and I woke up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, and all of a sudden I had a flash of this really short, hairy troll like creature, that was standing there looking at me. So I ran back to bed, scared to death and  told myself that it was just my imagination, however as soon as I was in bed I got another flash of him.  It wasn’t until the next day, when I told the locals about what I’d seen that they said that’sexactlywhat they look like – you’ve seen an Aluxes!

Each step along Signe’s journey faery incidents followed her, and her faith in her own intuition and in the magic of the world increased.

Signe: I discovered whilst writing ‘Faery Tale’, that I went on this journey because I thought I didn’t have any magic in my life, and I thought I couldn’t find any magic, but what I realised through writing ‘Faery Tale’ is that weallhave magic around us at every moment, we are living in a world which is filled with different spirit beings. It’s all a matter of us learning how to be open and us learning how to see them, and that’s what the people I met through writing my book helped me to learn to do.

Signe was surprised and delighted to discover that readers not only loved following her adventures, but were also beginning to use it as a guide to reconnect with the faeries themselves. I wondered if she had any idea that the book could be used this way.

Signe: I think that when I was travelling, they (the faeries) were putting things in my path, so that people could go down a similar pathway, and could have their own unique relationship with the faery kingdom.  I feel we are all ‘searching’ but it can be hard to know where to start. A lot of the books out there are fabulous for people who are already ‘in the flow’, but I feel it’s important forall of usas humans to think it’s OK to question and to open up, because it’s when we do this, that we are giving spirit a chance to give us ‘proof’.

For me, the unifying theme in Faery Tale is that as long as you are seeking, you are on the right path. We are at a time in the world now where we have to see and do things differently.  So when we talk about a belief in faeries we are talking about people who want to reconnect with the land, and who want to return to a time when we believed the land was imbued with spirit.  If we respect the land, we can communicate with that spirit and learn to live better lives; treating the planet and each other better.

So with all these life changing experience s under her belt, what is next for Signer Pike?

Signe: Well, they say ‘once you step on the faery path, they won’t let you off! So I’ll continue to explore the ‘unseen’ and the realms of the human world, and the beings that exist in the twilight, around the edges.

As Signe and I part ways, my day feels brighter for having met her, and I look forwards to her continuing journeys in the land of the fae.

Laura Daligan 2011