Using the magick and lore of the Celtic / Norse gods / goddesses in writing your next novel
Mythology is a symbolic way of looking at the world. Myths use storytelling to put form to the unseen, so that the human mind can expand and begin to know the unknowable. This type of mythology operates on a different plane from that of science, history, or even fiction. A culture’s mythology is its pathway into the mysteries. They use symbolic language to trigger our deepest levels of connection with existence.
The same myth can operate at different levels and can be interpreted in a variety of ways – all of which may be true, all at the same time. The meaning of a myth is not literal, not history, but is poetry.
•It’s not the original plot of the story that’s the important part, but the essence of the character which aligns the use of bits and pieces from lore and myths and rewrites it, expands it, alters it and changes it.
•As you write about your characters you are actually making them more real, bringing them to life and offering them individuality.
•Think of your self as a creator and you are molding these characters, breathing life into them and making them act out a life that you have put together for them.
When you begin to create your characters ask yourself the following questions:
•Where do the deities live – the Astral? – the Otherworld? – or do you have a place you’ve created?
•Do they have laws?
•How would the character react?
•What is their true voice? (Aggressive, haughty, shy, meek, etc.)
•What is their true nature?
•Do they even like each other?
•Is there drama between many of them?
•Is there past history that creates drama and affects how they act, how they speak, how they interact with each other and Earth characters?
•Do different Gods and Goddesses have different degrees of power or ability?
•Does morality vary among the deities just as it does among humans?
•Is it true that no one deity is purely good or purely evil?
Keep in mind that the Gods and Goddesses personify forces within nature:
•Brigit – fire
•Manannan – the ocean
•Anu – the air
•Arawn – the earth
•Artio – wildlife
•Nechtan – water
Maybe there is conflict in what people in your story believe:
•The Gods and Goddesses are symbolic rather than ‘real’
•The Gods and Goddesses were originally humans whose extraordinary deeds came to be regarded as divine.
This is only the tip of what’s available to you, but hopefully it’ll be enough to get those creative juices flowing. Think hard on what type of storyline you’re trying to build, what message you want to get across to the reader, and how best do you want to entertain them.
NEWS: TJ Perkins will be conducting a full blown Workshop on this subject at Balticon May 2014 at the Hunt Valley Marriott, Hunt Valley, Maryland USA. She will be accompanied by award-winning author Maria Snyder. You’ll walk away with a booklet of great information and also be led through a meditation to open those creative juices. Be prepared to write! Seating is limited so sign up early. We hope to see you there!