When Magian first became a written language, writers used a papyrus-like material made out of a plant, shof saril, which had a natural, uniform pattern of spots. Rather than write over them, the writers incorporated these spots as nuclei for their words, creating the unique circular pattern of writing Magian is known for.
Even when the language traveled from its original continent to a place where no shof saril could be found, writers found their own efficient ways to continue the tradition, the most common being the invention of the rinpil, a small circular stamp which can now be found on the desk of most Magian writers. Pre-stamped parchment became a common product in The Severed Islands in the beginning of the 11th Age.
Letters are pretty straightforward, each sound in the phonetic inventory represented by one symbol. You’ll see in the image below that consonant symbols are attached to the nucleus of the word while vowel symbols hang above it.
Words begin at the top of the circle and proceed clockwise. It is always the consonants which are evenly spaced around the circle regardless of how many vowels are present or where they are positioned. In words consisting of only one consonant and one vowel, the vowel is placed on the right side of the circle. Here are some examples:
With compound words typically remaining separated, things like plurals and tenses adding minimal characters, and the language’s limiting phonotactics, the vast majority of words are short enough to fit on one circle. There is no rule determining how to handle longer words, but common practice is to extended words longer than 6 consonants onto the next nucleus on the page, with the 7th consonant starting at the top of the circle, and to indicate that the nuclei belong to the same word with a short dash between them. Some writers, however, choose to fit more than 6 consonants onto one nucleus.