How To Create A Completely Albino Society?
Today's question about creating an albino race in fantasy fiction world-building comes from multiple question askers, asking similar questions about creating a completely albino society in their novels. Both question askers, gave long detailed descriptions of their novels, the races they want to create, etc. Both are trying to decide logical ways why a society would become entirely albino. Both asked how it was I created the Ecrodons (Moon Elves) a radical white power race of snooty High Elves that is entirely albino, with no none albinos among them.
For this article, I have included only the parts of their questions which where retentive to the answer I am writing. They were trying to decide possibly reasons why their characters were albinos and tossed around ideas they were considering building upon.
I have highlighted the parts of their questions that is of particular importance to what I am about to say:
Albino Because of Living In Caves?
[quote=Storm]unless I'm horribly mistaken, a good number of deep-cave creatures can turn out to be white-ish in color once brought out into the sunlight, I think it's a lack of sunlight that makes them lose their pigmentation or something, I might want to look into that a bit.[/quote]
With the first question asker, you see them toying with the possibility of the race (Humans in his/her book) being deep cave dwellers for centuries, resulting in evolution creating a race of albinos.
I highlighted this part, because it is exactly what I did for the Quaraun series. The Ecrodons (Moon Elves) live deep below ground in a series of caves systems below the ice capped polar mountains of the Deep North.
Because of the harsh year-round glacial conditions of the region, living in regular houses outside, is a near impossibility. It is why, the entire village became suspicious of the gingerbread house that suddenly appeared on the outskirts of their village, in the Frozen Forest. No one but Frost Creatures (Frost Giants, Frost Liches, and Chrystonites) could withstand living on the surface.
And so, yes, in my own albino race, one of the things which contributes to their becoming albino, is in fact, living deep underground in dark cave systems. Though it is not the only factor which contributes to their deformity.
And it is a deformity. For if one traces them back to before they lives underground, they were not always albinos.
Albino Because of Racial Cleaning:
White Supremacists Murdering All None White Babies
[quote=Kamboolii]Naturally or artificially? The only way I can think of for this to work naturally is to have the albino people kill off anyone who isn't albino and continue doing this for a long period of time. (This assumes the trait is dominant to begin with).
Either that or have such a strong sexual preference for albinism that no one who isn't albino is ever chosen for a mate (although this seems impossible given human sexuality).
Artificially, however, is another matter. With magic, it could be done with a wave of the hand. An ancient curse. An alchemical mistake. A form of magical radiation. Whatever.
Everyone born in this region is simply albino. That's how they're born. Give birth on the other side of the border and they're not. Because magic.[/quote]
Yes. I highlighted this one for a reason. If you've ever read a Quaraun book, you know Quaraun has a major character flaw, that makes it difficult for readers to view him as a hero:
Quaraun is a white supremacist. He tries not to be. He doesn't really want to be. But he was raised in a society that is so radically extremely obsessed with purity, that they eat their own children, if the infants are not born white enough.
Quaraun never fit in with his people. He doesn't hate non-Elves. He doesn't see anything wrong with non-whites. But he was beaten, punished, and tortured mercilessly by his father, uncles, and neighbours his entire childhood, and now as an adult is torn between what he truly believes in, and what he feels compelled to act upon out of fear of punishment. Quaraun is a sick, frail, weak Elf. His ill health makes him fearful of disobeying Elves bigger and stronger then he is. This results in Quaraun acting against what he truly believes, simply to save himself.
The Moon Elves of the Quaraun series are what the Human race would become, if the Ku Klux Klan and the Nazi Party had their way. A world where every one in power is whiter then white, and kills everything not exact carbon copies of themselves.
Sadly, the Moon Elf Village is based off a very real town, a very real community, Old Orchard Beach, Maine, where white power is insanely out of control, and all none white live in mortal fear of having their heads cut off with swords.
But let's take a look at the viscous, violent, blood thirsty Ecrodons, the monstrous creatures that were based of a real community of people, so bizarre, they can barely be called human.
While the residents of Old Orchard Beach are not 100% albino, you do find albinos in outlandishly high proportions here in the area. In most of the world, albinos are rare, in fact, outside of small isolated tribes of Africa, Papua New Guina, and the Amazon Rain Forest (where incest is the norm) you almost never see an albino at all.
Come to Maine and you'll see albinos everywhere. Come to Biddeford and they thrive in throngs. Old Orchard Beach, Biddeford, Portland, Lewestion, and Damriscotia, boast some of the highest consentrations of albinos in the world.
The answer might shock you...
Do you know what causes albinos to be born?
While lots of things contribute to pale skin, only one thing and one thing only, results in a true albino:
And not just any incest.
It requires 3 generations of sibling incest to produce an albino.
A brother + a sister, have to give birth to 2 children, one male and one female; those children in turn must give birth to two more children, again a boy and a girl, and this third pair, when they give birth to a child, it has a 75% change of being born an albino.
It's the ONLY way to produce a TRUE albino.
Did you know that?
Next time you see an albino, remember, that his parents are siblings, and their parents are sibling, and their parents are siblings... because it is only through 3 generations of sibling incest, that the albino mutation can be activated in DNA.
Of course, Biddeford, Lewiston, and Damrascota, Maine all are vying for the #1 spot as the town in America with the highest incest rate. A title that Biddeford, Maine currently holds. Pointing out that Biddeford, Maine also has the highest population of Ku Klux Klan members in America as well.
In other words... when writing your book, no mater what else you put in there, if your character truly is an albino, that character is a result of incest.
How To Create A Completely Albino Society?
A Look At The Ecrodons of The Twighlight Manor Series
I have two races of Elves who are near by to each other (a few hundred miles apart) that are very closely related (DNA wise) but due to their genetic health and lifestyle, they have evolved over the centuries into 2 distinct races.
The Ecrodons and The Trailkites. Collectively they are known as The Flamites, or "the people from the burning planet".
While they are not "true Elves" they are referred to by Humans as "The High Elves" collectively and "Moon Elves (Ecrodons) and Sun Elves (Trailkites) individually.
In Quaraun universe, there are two types of Elves, Common Elves or True Elves, and High Elves or Space Elves, who are alien beings from another planet and have no DNA blood connection to Elves at all.
Common Elves are larger, more muscled out, better built for fighting, and closely resemble Humans. In fact Common Elves (such as Wood Elves, Forest Elves, Mountain Elves, Desert Elves, etc) are easily mistake for Humans, the only outward difference being their narrow eyes and pointed ears.
The Flamites, do not resemble Humans. They are smaller, thinner, have delicate bird-like bones that break easily, have large, oversized, very round eyes, and distinctive long, thin, rabbit-like pointed ears which can grow to a foot or more in length.
Additionally, while the Common Elves possess no inheritance "magical" properties, the Flamites are psyonic, possessing a community hive mind that connects all of them together as though they were one single organism. Each knowing the thoughts, feelings, pains, joys, and emotions of the other. This makes them a deadly foe, in spite of their physical frailty, because they can silently give command and are capable of moving on command in unison as though one creature.
Though psychically, one on one a Flamite is incapable of fighting, when banded together, a mass hoard of them in nearly undeafetable.
The Ecrodons, have an additional trait, making them extremely deadly: they can move objects with their mind. Te most powerful ones, being able to look at a person and say: "Die!" and the person simply obediently drops dead, from their brain quite literally ripping itself out of their head and appearing in the hand of the Ecrodon who gave the command.
Though the Humans refer to them as Elves, calling them High Elves, to distinguish them from True Elves, The Flamites or Space Elves are not Elves at all.
When the Flamites landed on Earth in centuries passed, they were one single race. Two distinct races did not exist upon their initial crash landing and entrapment on Earth. Stranded, soldiers who knew how to fight but with no technical skills, they were unable to repair their warship, unable to leave the planet, the Flamites settled down into their own little, isolated community. They kept to themselves, choosing not to mingle with the natives.
A few Flamites ventured out to see who and what the natives were, some taking Humans and Common Elves as mates. The Flamite rulers took this action as treason and immediately executed any one who dared mingle with the alien creatures of planet Earth.
Convinced that they would one day be rescued and taken off this backworld planet, they set up laws making it illegal to have any contact with the earthlings (Humans & Elves) and set out to slaughtering any one among them who dared step outside their village.
As time passed on, the community became divided. Two groups emerging. One group gave up on hope that rescue would ever arrive and wanted to focus on expanding their our community, building houses and schools and places of worship.
The second group, followed the Emperor, fanatically convinced help would come and that any form of building a city would establish themselves as traitors, deserter, abandoning the cause. (Though by this point, several generations had passed and no one could remember what "the cause" was.)
The first group stated the cause was dead, the planet lost, the war over, no one was coming to rescue them, and they needed to move on and start over, here, on this planet, even though they were not from here, they were stck here and so had no logical choice but to make due with what life had given them.
And thus the two groups were created. The Ecrodons, following their emperor, waiting to continue their fight as soon as help arrived, and the Trailkites, who gathered together, and headed south, in search for a slightly more inhabitable place to set up a city, rather then a settlement.
Both are in the North, in near Arctic regions. The northernmost group, the Ecrodons (said to live in "The Deep North") being in a place that has snow nearly all year, the southern-more group, the Trailkites, (said to live in "The Far North") getting only a few months of the year without snow.
The Flamites came from a planet where surface dwelling was deadly. Mountains melted under the heat of the sun, that was ever getting closer. A planet that had been hit by a comet and sent off it orbit path, had seen rivers turn to lava and trees turn to ash, as it's people scurried into ships to escape the planet before it was sucked into it's sun and destroied. It was thus that the Flamites came to crash land on Earth, but they emmerged in Ivujivik, Quebec, at it's northernmost point.
Ivujivik is the northernmost settlement in Quebec; it is the northernmost settlement in any Canadian province. And in the Quaraun series, readers know it as: The Moon Elf Village.
Want To Visit Quaraun's home?
Did you know you can?
The Real Name of The Moon Elf Village is Ivujivik
Ivujivik, Quebec, is an actual real town,
Here are the directions to it:
All of the locations in the Quaraun books, are real places that you can actually visit. The Forest of No Return, where Quaraun meets Unicorn in Night of The Screaming Unicorn, is The Ross Forest of Old Orchard Beach, Maine. You can see me taking a walking tour of the location from the opening scene of the novel here:
You will notice that the Quaraun series is set in the Maritime Region of North America and thus Quebec and Maine make up the bulk of the geographical locations. This becomes an important factor in the development of the completely albino Moon Elf race.
These two groups, were native to a very hot, burning planet and suddenly found themselves in a world of perpetual ice and snow with very little vegetation.
While the Moon Elves/Ecrodons chose to stay at the crash site of their ship (Ivujivik, Quebec), the Sun Elves/Trailkites, chose instead to travel south in search of less hostile terrine, bringing them to Maine. While the exact location of the Sun Elf village is never said, it is south of The Moon Elf Village (Ivujivik, Quebec) and north of The Forest of No Return (The Ross Forest & Blueberry Plains of Old Orchard Beach, Maine.) In Summoner of Darkness, Quaraun arrives at Witch Pond, where he runs into the Sun Elf, GhoulSpawn, who states that he has just left the Sun Elf Village and is only a few days south of it. As Witch Pond is a real location, see here in this video:
And is located in Acadia National Park, on Mt Desert Island in Bar Harbour, Maine, we know that the Sun Elf Village is also north of Bar Harbour, but not that far away. And a 3 days walk in the 1400s, means the Sun Elf Village is likely on Mt Desert Island itself, possible under the shadow of Bubble Rock. Bubble Rock can be seen in this video:
The directions to visit both Bubble Rock & Witch Pond, for yourself, can be found here:
Being so far north, both had to adapt to the climate, and both are naturally paler then other Elves, due to the extreme lack of high sunlight in the sky, short days, and long nights, that are a result of their living so far north.
The two villages are closely related (DNA wise) but over several centuries, the race in the Deep North (The Moon Elves/Ecrodons) grew progressively paler, until they reached the point of always being albino, yet the Sun Elves/Trailkites, close by retained their original colouring.
Though pale, the Sun Elves could not be considered albino.
The Moon Elves have three distinct "types."
Standard Moon Elves, being born with blue eyes, meaning they are not true albinos, but have the mutated albino gene, thus their skin and hair is white, but their eyes are blue.
Lutino Moon Elves, are considered a mutation and classified as a separate race known as the Ratzins. The only difference between a Moon Elf and a Ratzin, is the Ratzins are Lutino, meaning they posses the albino genes and lack pigmentation of skin and hair, BUT they also possess the Lutino gene which results in their having yellow eyes.
(In humans - in real life, not in the novels - the Lutino mutation, is the rarest of all, far more rare then albinism. Yellow eyed humans are exceptionally rare and typically do not reach adulthood because the same gene that causes yellow eyes also causes their immune system to be very weak.)
TRUE Albinos, have whitish-pink eyes and red pupils or whitish blue, pink tinged eyes with red pupils. I have known albinos in real life, and there is no eye colour, stranger, or more hypnotic, then the iridescent ice blue, tinted with flakes of metallic pink, surrounding the blood red pupils. A blue eyed albino, looks surreal and unearthly. They also can not go outside in the daylight, are nearly blind in even the dimmest of lights, and their pupils stay forever closed in tiny pin pricks during the daytime.
Because of their skin and eyes extreme sensitivity to sunlight, most albinos (real albinos) sleep during the day and go outside only at night. Contact with the sunlight causes their skin to blister and peel after only a few minutes.
Albinism is a seriously debilitating medical condition, something rarely reflected accurately in fiction.
I've known real albinos in real life. I know for a fact, their lives are very limited by their crippling condition. It's far more then having "white skin". They also have no immune system, and something as simple as a common cold could kill them in a matter of ours.
Most real life albinos live very isolated existences due to having no ability to have contact with others without contracting some deadly virus, deadly to them, but so common to every one else, no one notices it.
It is because of the real life frailty of albinos, that you see Quaraun in my novels, as being weak and sickly. And just as our real world have a myriad of myths and inaccurate glorification of albinos, so too is this included in the Quaraun series where people build up myths about Albinos, glorifying them as heroes, which in turn results in people trying to get Quaraun to do heroic quests and deeds that he's really not able to do, but is also not being given a choice as the world refuses to believe albinism is a terribly debilitating illness.
In the Quaraun series, pink is considered a sacred colour, not worn by the general public and reserved only for royalty. It is the colour of the "primary god" of the Elves and Faeries: The Sacred Pink JellyFish. Only The Sacred Pink JellyFish herself, her DiJinn priests, and The Grand High Emperor of the Triple Planets, are allowed to wear pink. (Quaraun is a DiJinn priest, thus why he wears pink).
Because of pink being seen as a sacred colour, anyone born with pink eyes is considered to have "the blood of the gods", thus the Moon Elves, with a high rate of pink eyed children amoung them, consider themselves the most superior race in the universe, due to their belief that they are a direct blood link to The Sacred Pink JellyFish herself.
In the Quaraun series, just as in real life, true albinos have distinctive blood red pupils. Like albinos in real life, Albino Moon Elves are very sickly, prone to catching every illness that comes their way, have weak immune systems, weak hearts, bleed profusely from the slightest scratch, have frail, hollow, almost bird-like bone structures, stay indoors during day light to prevent horrific burns, and are easily injured by simple bumps and scrapes that would not harm a non-albino.
Quaraun, is a true albino. He possess the ice blue eye variation, with red pupils and pink veining in his irises. Because of the pinkness in his eyes, he is worshiped by followers of the Sacred Pink JellyFish Cult, who is prevalent in the series.
Quaraun is considered to be the purest blooded of the Moon Elves, as his family can trace back at least 15 generations of sibling marriages, with the majority of them being twin marriages. His mother was his father's sister, and their parents were siblings, and so on, for 15 generations. Quaraun's first wife was his older sister by an arranged marriage, and his 3rd wife was his half-Elf daughter by his Human 2nd wife. His twin sons King Vielder and Melca (Roderic's father) (all of The Twighlight Manor series) were a result of his pairing with his half-Elf daughter.
Because of his a genetic make-up, because of so many generations of incest, Quaraun is a very sick, frail, runt of an Elf, who suffers from dozens of birth defects including a weak heart that causes his frequent, daily, cataleptic fainting spells, and weak bone structure, resulting in his frequent injuries due to cracked, fractured, and broken bone, as well as his brain having sponge like holes in it, which causes his rampant paranoid outbursts of hysteria. These are very real medical illnesses that real life albino people are born with.
While most literature glorifies albinos as epic heroes (think: Witcher and InuYasha and the millions of other albino heroes in the media) in reality, albinos are born with dozens of debilitating birth defect that limit their mobility, most real life albinos spend their entire lives bed ridden, only 3% of albinos will ever reach adulthood and 98% of albinos will succumb to one of their birth defect, dying before they reach the age of 30 years old.
The reality of being born albino, is your life will be very short and filled with more medical issues than you can count, with most albinos dying before they reach the age of 10 years old.
It is because of the real world, crippling nature of albinism, that I created Quaraun to be the weak, frail, sickly, little runt of an Elf he is. His health very closely reflects real life illnesses faced by real world albinos.
And other characters in the books, reflect very real world perceptions of albinos, with characters idolizing Quaraun, thinking of him as mystical, magical, and heroic, by simple virtue of his being albino, and most people inadvertently hurting him, because of their narrow minded superstitions, preventing them from realizing just how frail and sickly he really is.
But, getting back to how his race, his culture, progressed to the point of reaching, giving birth to an Elf, so whose blood was so "pure" as to be this frail...
The Moon Elves are fanatical, in their obsession with purity. Yes, they are aware that the "purer" they get the weaker their health becomes. They also don't care. For they, in their minds, are superior to all life.The whiter they are, the purer they are. The purer they are, the "better" they are, and that, in their sick, twisted minds, gives them the right to kill every living being that is not white. The Moon Elves are white supremacists. The Moon Elves are what our world will become, if the Ku Klux Klan had their way. The Moon Elf society is based off the very real human society that exists here in Old Orchard Beach, Maine: The Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. A group of hate mongers completely obsessed with purity and slaughtering all things not white... including, ironically, people whose skin is physically whiter then their own.
To discover how a society reaches the point of being fully albino, one must study a society who is actually attempting to do, just that.
But the goal here was to look at how to use albinism in fiction, specifically how to logically have a race that wasn't albino, become albino, and have them all, always be born albino... as was asked by the author who inspired this article... who asked this question, because they wanted to write a scene explaining to their readers how it is the race evolved into an albino race.
And so we go to the Quaraun series looking for how it is I did this exact same thing.
What in the Quaraun series is two separate races: the blond Sun Elves and the albino Moon Elves, started out originally as one race (The Ecrodones) who in actually are not Elves at all, but rather a group of aliens who's ship
Keeping in mind the Quaraun series is SpellJammer fan fiction, and the Space Elf Helmsmen Wizards of SpellJammer are vastly different species then the Common Wood Elves of the Forgotten Realms, where their ship [The SpellJammer] crash landed after being attacked by The Natiloid [the Illithid/Mind Flayer's ship, which also crash landed]. This is the OFFICIAL Dungeons and Dragons explanation (written by D&D creator Gary Gygax) for how the Eldarin, High Elves, and Mind Flayers came to exist in the Forgotten Realms universe. And why Eldarin & High Elves (also known as Space Elves) are so vastly different in Dungeons and Dragoons then Elves of any other type of Elf mythology.
Most people call the the Dungeons and Dragons High Elves - "Elves on Crack" because of their near god-like super powers, and way over powered wizards. Most Dungeon Masters won't let players play High Elves because their player stats are way out of balance with the rest of the group. Usually if you see a High Elf in game, it's a NPC played by the DM and not a player character.
Also the SpellJammer's guide for playing a Space Elf wizard, gives you utterly insane spells not found in standard D&D... like the ability to toss 800lb Giant Space Hamsters at people; shooting rainbow laser bolts out of your wand; defeating your enemy by crushing them under the hooves of stampeding space rhinos; or if you get board with fighting enemies because it takes away too much time from your eating butterflies and pooping rainbows with your Space Unicorns, you can just unleash your hive mind and decimate the entire questing group with a single word.
In SpellJammer, in addition to being able to play over powered high as kites High Elves on drugs, you can also play the infamous Mind Flayer (brain sucking squid men), in the only official D&D campaign that allows you to turn on your fellow players and eat their brains.
SpellJammer basically turns Elves into evil, arrogant, drug addicted demi gods with chaotic alignments... demi god Elves who are allied with the Mind Flayers and think nothing of eating Humans, Drawvs, Gnomes, or Dragons.
This is SpellJammer if you've never had the pleasure of encountering it before...
When you realize that the Quaraun series was based off SpellJammer, you suddenly realize why the High Elves of the Quaraun series are nothing like Tolkien Elves and why you see the feuds in the Quaraun series, between the Elves and the High elves with the High elves mercilessly slaughtering Elves and feeding them to Thullids.
So with that in mind... let's take a look at the albino High Elves of the Quaraun series...
Back to what we was talking about...how to use albinism in fiction, specifically how to logically have a race that wasn't albino, become albino, and have them all, always be born albino... as was asked by the author who inspired this article... who asked this question, because they wanted to write a scene explaining to their readers how it is the race evolved into an albino race.
One race (the Moon Elves of the Deep North) is very nervous and skittish. An invasion war in centuries passed, caused them to be very paranoid of strangers, with them building up a vast stronghold around their valley, completely isolating themselves from all other peoples. Basically, the entire village has what is known as "Learned Paranoid Schizophrenia" (which means, every adult you knew growing up was paranoid, so all the children grew up thinking paranoia was "normal" resulting in all the children growing up to be paranoid adults, teaching their children to be paranoid - it's an actual real world illness, that "goes away" once the patient is "taught" that fear is not the normal state of being. When I found out about it, I thought: "What would happen if an entire city had it, and they were so isolated that after a few centuries, the race evolved into super-extreme-paranoid people? And so that's what this village is.)
So, because they were so scared of being attacked again, they kept going farther north, until they reached a place so isolated, they finally felt it was safe to live there without fear of invasion - because who would invade a desolate wasteland of snow and ice? The region has a tall mountain range, nearly impassible, at the center of which is a deep valley, being slightly warm in the valley, they can grow enough crops to survive. The mountain range is filled with caves and underground caverns. So they built their city there, with their houses being carved into the mountains, and they live deep inside the cave system, only going outside at night to tend their "moonlight gardens", quickly scurrying back into the caves at the slightest sound.
Because they are so isolated, and because they started out as all one family group, they became incestuous, because there was no outsiders to marry. So, over the centuries it became normal, standard, cultural practice for brothers to marry their sisters. It is seen as taboo, to marry outside of family, to the point that over time laws are made making it forbidden to NOT marry a sibling.
Because of their extreme fear of outsiders, they are suspicious of any one "different". The result is, another law was passed, stating that any child born that "was dark" (meaning not an albino) was to be killed immediately on suspicion of being a half-breed, and it's mother executed on grounds of fornicating with an outsider. Which resulted in only albinos ever reaching adulthood.
Since all this occurred a few thousand years before the birth of my MC, it results in, him being born into a society that it totally albino. Because of their white skin, white-blue/white-yellow/pink eyes, and white hair they can no longer leave the caves except at night, because the sun cripples them. And because they have evolved to live in total darkness, their skin glows in the dark, and their have keen night vision, but are nearly blind in sunlight.
A few actual real world facts about albinos come into play here:
#1: albinism is a dominate trait of incest pairings, that have at least 3 generations of incest in a row, nearly 90% of all albinos are a result of multi-generational incest (yes, even in humans - it requires 3 generations of parent/child and/or sibling/sibling incest to result in an albino human child to be born, which is why albinism is so common in small tribes in Africa, Papua New Guinea, and the Amazon Rainforest, as well as being common in mill towns around the State of Maine, but nearly none existent in the rest of the world)
#2: close family marriages (parent to child or sibling to sibling) have a 93% chance of producing an albino offspring
#3: albinism is a hereditary genetic mutation, meaning if one parent has it, the child is 25% more likely to get it, if both parents have it, 75% more likely
#4: people and animals in snow regions are paler then their closest DNA relations of none snow regions
#5: living in caves or underground for many generations, results in naturally evolving to a paler body, eventually resulting in offspring being born paler then their parents.
#6: birds, plants, fish, reptiles, worms, amphibians, fungi, and animals that live in EXTREME dark, subterranean cave systems, evolve to become phosphorescent (meaning their skin not only turns white, but starts to glow in the dark) (in some case glow in the dark fur is found, as in the case of the glow in the dark rabbits discovered about 5 years ago in the cave systems of France)
#7: interesting and little known fact: albinos have a high rate of severe mental instability, with nearly every albino human ever (99%) researched having some form of Schizophrenia, leading to studies that Schizophrenia may be genetic and hereditary
With those real world facts in mind, combined with the lifestyle of these very paranoid Elves, I concluded that after a few thousand years of living in the cave systems of a snow region, marrying only siblings, resulted in the entire village being albinos.
I wanted to have an entirely albino race, and so originally just said they were albino and that was good enough (back in 1978 when I first started writing them) and it wasn't until around 1985 that I started wondering if it was even possible for such a race to exist. I started studying white salamanders and blind cave fish, and found out that when taken out of the caves, they start to STOP producing albino offspring. Then I discovered that many rocks, fish, etc glowed in the dark, the deeper the dark they lived in. But it wasn't until those rabbits with glowing fur made headlines in France a few years ago that I suddenly did a massive study of actual genetics behind albinism, and wrote up the backstory behind how this race of Elves got to be albinos, while their close relatives just a few hundred miles South of them, did not.
This article was originally written on: October 20, 2016
This page last updated on: March 28, 2017