Sunday, February 17, 2008

Fairy Folklore

I don't know when it was that my interest in the fantasy genre became a little bit more particular. I remember it wasn't that long ago that I couldn't conceive of a workable urban or mythical fantasy story. It was like the perfect vampire story. I'm intrigued by the idea of writing an epic vampire novel. I just don't think that what I could put out there could compete with the multitudes of vampire fiction already in circulation. Maybe one day...

When I started with my "Of Elves and Men" trilogy, I remember taking a very loose look at the difference between such a magical race as the elves, in comparison to the men who perhaps were less magically inclined, and how the interrelation between the two kinds would work in a modern setting. That was the premise for "Changeling". I spent hardly any time going into the background of the magic used. I gave more time to the background mythology, which I suppose was why I couldn't leave it there, and soon went back in time, to approximately the Dark Ages, where "Ascent" starts. I endeavored to write a story over how magic was first passed between elves and men and how it was kept from being abused. "Haunted" will be the third book in that trilogy, and that tells of how the magic was lost in the rush forward of technology, within a Georgian setting.

I only ever meant for that to be a standalone trilogy of three books, but this idea of another race existing alongside our one is something that still fascinates me, even now I've finished writing the "Of Elves and Men" books. There is still so much on the subject to be said. Not to mention read about, and researched, and explored. All things I delight in doing every time I find an interesting subject! :D

In Celtic mythology, the Sidhe (pronounced "shee") are seen almost as gods, or spirits of ancestors and nature of that culture. European folklore sees fairy kind as the sort who would steal human children and sometimes leave one of their own in their place. There have been countless stories and poems written around this folklore, including

"The Stolen Child" by Keith Donohue, based on the William Butler Yeats' poem of the same name. William Butler Yeats wrote "The Stolen Child" in 1886 and it was not the only thing he wrote on the Fairy Folk. "Fairy and Folk Tales of the Irish Peasantry" and "Fairy Folk Tales of Ireland" were written in 1888 and 1892 respectively. He was an Irish poet who grew up in Sligo.

Nikki Watson.

"Changeling: Of Elves and Men" Now Available at NCP