Fairytales, Musing, Plot

Mythology

Having spent the week revising my prologue and first chapter (since I didn’t have the weekend, I figured I could take the slightly shorter route this week; new chapter next time), I’ve come to one major conclusion:

Mythologies are hard to invent.

I mean, the thing about mythologies is that they reflect the cultures they come out of. They show everything–the way they feel about family, gender, the world at large, what it means to be a good person. Every aspect of the culture comes out in their stories, and that’s why they resonate for generations. And here I am trying to make one up. How pretentious is that?

My mythology, so far, is oddly focused on balance, which I think is a good thing considering that the story is ultimately about keeping things in balance. Sort of. I think. The balance between knowing and just being, between individuality and society, between men and women, etc. etc. But the worrying thing is that, so far, it isn’t really reflected in the culture of the people. How do you make up stories that take generations to develop and keep them relevant? Therein lies the major question.

In a way, I think this relates to the book I read this weekend. How to make an old story relevant again is very close to how to make an old-sounding story relevant. Maybe I ought to spend some time in the heads of the gods. Maybe that would help with the following problem:

I have two sets of warring brothers in my mythology so far. While my main character has a brother, I hadn’t intended to make him a major part of the story, and I certainly didn’t intend for him to go to war with Pau. This is maybe not a very big problem, but it has me worried on account of not wanting the story to turn into every mythology ever. Because there are a lot of warring brothers in mythology (seriously, look it up) and it would be an awful let-down to just mimic every story ever told.

I suppose originality is my biggest concern, when it comes to my mythology. Originality and relevancy. Guess we’ll see what I can hammer out.

Doubtfully yours,
M.M. JOrdahl

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