Tuesday, July 05, 2011


I went to the bank and the main library, then to a coffee shop to write. Then I walked along the Mississippi. It's high for this time of year. Part of walk near the Upper Landing is under water and closed off. The Lower Landing, where a lot of tow boats dock, is also under water and closed. Nothing is docked there now.

The day started overcast. By the time I took my walk it was sunny and into the 80s. A bit warm for me, but I enjoyed the river and the flowers planted along it. Most looked like wild flowers to me, though I saw some barnyard roses. And milkweed and butterfly weed.

I'm currently working on a fantasy that begins with an incident in the Egils saga, where Egil kills two slaves. At the time, Egil was 80 and blind, so it seemed impressive. Though hard on the slaves, who had done nothing wrong.

In my story, one of the slaves is not killed, but escapes into the land of the elves. I'm giving him a guided tour of elfdom: first the light elves, based on Icelandic folk tales, then the dark elves, mentioned briefly in the Prose Edda, and finally the Irish fey.

This is the fourth story I've written that uses saga material or Icelandic folk lore. I figure the stories ought to be a chapbook, titled The Hidden Folk, which is one of the names for elves in Iceland.

The stories are not all about the elves. One is about the undead slave Glam in the Grettis saga. Another involves the devil and trolls. A third involves hydroelectric power and trolls. Only this last story involves elves. But all the stories are about dark and hidden things.


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