Anyone who knows me knows that---in stereotypical American fashion---I identify strongly with my European heritage, especially during the holiday season when lots of old traditions are dredged up each year. I'm German American. I am aware that many native-born Germans turn up their nose at Americans claiming German ancestry, but I'd like to think I… Continue reading Holiday Heritage: Springerle
I am very excited to announce that I have signed with Amy Stapp of Wolfson Literary Agency!
In this podcast, I got to talk with Anne at Armchair Historians about something I haven't really discussed on my blog before: the Schleswig-Holstein wars and the rise of a cohesive German identity throughout the 19th century.
This article, originally published over at author Joshua Gillingham's website, is based on Peter Hallberg’s 1975 publication ‘Old Icelandic Poetry: Eddic Lay and Skaldic Verse’ as well as Haukur Þorgeirsson and Óskar Guðlaugsson’s ‘Old Norse for Beginners’
Anyone familiar with Iceland has likely heard something about turf houses, the iconic grass-roofed houses that grace the countryside, carried over from insulation methods in medieval Norway. I wrote once before about Rútshellir, a famous old cave guarded by a turf-covered barn. But while the cave itself might be the oldest man-made residence in Iceland,… Continue reading A Visit to Keldur, Iceland
May Day is known as the day when people riot and protest. This began in Victorian times, when May 1st was chosen as international workers' day, beginning a long tradition of resistance to unfair treatment. But I'm talking about an altogether very different May Day riot: 'Evil May Day,' as it was known at the… Continue reading A Modern-Style Riot in 1517
Check out my recent discussion with Luke and Dan over at Northern Myths. We cover the comparative myth of Siegfried/Sigurd, references to related legends in the Beowulf manuscript, and more.
Dragon-like figures feature prominently in folklore from around the world. They often hold---or once held---special significance to their respective cultures. Chinese dragons historically symbolized good luck and imperial power, and were used in iconography surrounding the emperor. The founder of the Han dynasty went so far as to claim that his mother dreamt of a… Continue reading Dragons and Sin in Medieval Germanic Literature
Language has played a crucial role in the history of our world, but in most fantasy, it is often mentioned only in passing. It’s easy to see why: writing fictional languages is hard, and making them seem realistic is even harder. But it’s a topic worth thinking about, especially for those writers who like to… Continue reading Language in Fantasy
Anyone who's studied the English canon has likely been exposed to the famous daffodils in "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud." William Wordsworth was undoubtedly passionate about the natural world in general--it featured prominently in his poetry, and, together with Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey, he was grouped rather disparagingly as one of the… Continue reading Death of the Author: An Analysis of Wordsworth