The Role of Mythology in Fiction

So some people asked me to share my symposium presentation about building myth in creative writing. Your wish is my command! Here’s my abstract:

The world is not constructed simply of fact, but also of myth. The interplay between mythology, geography, culture and history is a relationship which fiction provides a perfect platform for exploring. This presentation will focus specifically on Welsh and Celtic mythology, a relatively unknown genre of myth, before exploring the ways studying the influences of myth can help create worlds in fiction. Welsh mythology is closely tied to its geographic roots, with many tales informing the listener specifically where the events are said to have taken place. This connection between land, history and legend will be examined in the stories Culhwch and Olwen from the Mabinogion and The Prophecy of Merlin from the History of the Kings of Britain by Geoffrey of Monmouth, both of which have powerful connections with Welsh culture even today. Finally, an excerpt from my own work in progress, Blessings, will be read to demonstrate how I have utilized my research to create a world with its own myths, history, and place. Drafts and notes will be read to show how I created my world based on what I have learned about myths and fairytales in Wales.

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The Annual Thankful Post

I’m thankful for:

Family and Adopted Family. Like my brother who’s man enough to leave his videogames, put on an apron and make some killer homemade rolls. And like Michelle with the best hugs ever and Brad who’s willing to talk with me for lengths of time about foreign countries.

Friends. Especially ones who go on adventures to Barcelona or Cornwall, read my manuscript to me in a pirate accent, get me hooked on Canadian shows or go over lists to plan out our days.

A Great Semester. I have loved all my classes, and I can tell this is going to be one of those times the last day of class is a sad affair.

Blessings. Even the heartbreakingly hard ones. I’ve found those are often the ones that change my life.

William Jenkyn Thomas, who taught in Wales, realized that the Welsh oral tradition was dying away and no one was writing down the stories. So he set about to write a children’s book, The Welsh Fairy Book. When I was about fourteen, I found the book in my local library and snatched it off the walls. If I hadn’t, I’d probably be a boring person writing about things like “real life” or the “modern era.” Thank you, Will.

(Old) WitMMM: Day Six (Conwy to Dublin)

(Originally posted on May 16, 2012)

We were worried about not having enough time to see Conwy castle and visit some shops on this morning, so we got up earlier and were down for breakfast the moment they started serving. Classic oldies were playing from the radio. We were the only ones down, and we sat by the window. It was completely peaceful. The host and hostess were really chill and relaxed. I got teased a bit for just ordering bacon and was told several times to ask for more if I was still hungry (I also was having toast and cereal). Even though we had a crazy day ahead, it was the perfect start to the morning. We both never wanted to leave.

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(Old) WitMMM: Day Five (York to Conwy)

(Originally posted on May 15, 2012)

We took it slow the morning of day five. Had a leisurely breakfast, then went to the train station. We would be heading to Conwy that day. About a month ago I’d bought our tickets (to save money). But I had gotten them to Llandudno, not Conwy. Later I would remember I did this because trains to Conwy were infrequent and tricky. But I’d forgotten about that, so when we got to the train station we went ahead and grabbed cheap tickets from Llandudno to Conwy.

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(Old) The Double A’s Adventure: Part 1

(Originally posted on March 8, 2012)

I’m sitting in the Zurich Airport, after waking up at 4 AM and three trains from Germany. But it’s as good a time as any to talk about the Double A’s Adventure – my journeys with my older sister over the last eight days.

I’m no longer in the airport (thank goodness, ha), and am back in Reading! Still working on the account of the adventures because I am sick and quite worn out.

I’ve used cuts again, and I’ll try to stick to just the interesting stuff!

Background info: My sister was in the UK for a Welsh/Irish wedding. The bride was Welsh, the groom was Irish, so they had the wedding in Wales and reception in Ireland.

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