Google “F-a-e-r-i-e” and you will get over 10 and a half million results. Google “F-a-i-r-y” and they will exceed 74 million. I personally prefer “Faerie”, but both are correct. Brian Froud uses “Faerie” to refer to the group and “Fairy” to refer to small, winged female Faeries. It should be noted they can be further divided into specific types and even within those types there are variations among the individuals with regard to personality and temperament.
Let me be very clear. The "Disney-fied" version of the Other Crowd is not at all representative of the Otherworldly creatures you will meet in my stories. I have been criticized for having a rather "dark" approach to those who prefer the Victorian "twee" Fairies found in certain circles. Thankfully, I didn't allow such feedback to steer me away from the stories that I wanted to tell.
The same Faerie species may have various names, depending upon the region it’s found. Faeries are seen in all cultures and thus have names suited to that culture, usually reflecting a description of their physical appearance, temperament or where they are at that particular time.
The pronunciation of many of the names of specific individuals or tribes may also prove difficult. This is due in part to the Faeries themselves, who often change names as we would our hairstyles or our mood. It is very rare that a Faerie would reveal their true name because to do so gives power to the one who holds it. The best example of this is Rumplestiltskin, who I consider to be a Faerie, although I am not entirely sure what type. Perhaps that warrants further research on my part.
Faerie is a world where everything seems magnified. A place of dark enchantments, captivating beauty, enormous ugliness, callous superficiality, humor, mischief, joy, inspiration, terror, laughter, love, and tragedy.
Appearances can be deceiving in the realm of the Fae. The most beautiful may be the most dangerous ( Leanansidhe ) and what some may consider the most unattractive may also be the most friendly and helpful ( Urisk ). All Faeries have dark and light aspects to them. Those who deny this are taking a tremendous risk.
Brian Froud summed it up best when he wrote the following:
“Faeries are the spiritual personification of the hidden aspects of the world’s workings.”
This is why the allure of the Other Crowd has not only survived, but is once again thriving in the world. Thanks to the “magic” of the internet, it is now easier than ever to connect with others who also feel a draw to their realm and makes it possible to learn more about them than ever before.