Angel's here with today's SWL and a little bit about the stories we all need...
Hey, all! When we talk about the stuff we like, sometimes the subjects are transitory things, or things we found interesting recently. For this one, I wanted to talk a teensy bit about a subject near and dear to me since I was very small.
Myths and legends.
My parents realized early on that my reading habits were going to be different. Sure, I liked stories about dogs and horses, but I kept gravitating toward fairy tales. Big deal, you say. Little kids read fairy tales. True - but I didn't want the old standbys. Not content to read about Snow White and Cinderella, I wanted the gruesome old stories where people's heads get chopped off, where cruelty and awfulness abound, where the central characters have terrible obstacles to overcome. Maybe some parents would have been disturbed. Mine bought me this:
And a myth monster was born. I devoured myth as a kid - Greek, Norse, Celtic, Persian, stories of Hindu gods and heroes, folk tales from Japan. It didn't matter to me which tradition the stories belonged to. I wanted everyone's stories. Eventually, I started to see the types of characters common in myths and even had favorites. Sure, heroes are fun. But I liked the ones on the fringes best. The tricksters, the death gods (don't get the wrong idea - most death gods don't cause death; they just oversee what happens after) and the wild gods. When I got to college, I studied the meanings of myth, the mutability according to region and need, the evolution of stories, but those early stories and pictures are the ones that stay most deeply embedded in my brain.
I guess it's not surprising at all, knowing my history with gods and myths, that when I decided to start writing about them I didn't go for the big guns like Zeus or Apollo. Give me the badly adjusted gods, the outcasts, the thinkers. I'd rather write about them than a horndogs who solves their problems with weather tantrums. ;)