Sunday, May 29, 2011

Fairytale Time Machine

How would you like to be transformed for a few minutes a day into a small child? Well, you are in luck because I have in my possession a Fairytale time machine that is guaranteed to do the trick. My next series on Norwegian culture is based on the stories of Norwegian folklore, which have been transformed into wonderful fairytales for your enjoyment.

For the next month I will be on a writing mission. BuNoWriMo 
(Burrow Novel Writing Month) is starting on the 1st of June and I have committed myself to writing 50,000 words in 30 days. During this time I will be working on my first adult fantasy book. I have absolutely no idea what I am doing so this should be very exciting. It is not too late to join, so if you want some group support and some time on “speed” writing join the fun.

In the mean time I have prepared these stories about Askeladden (Ash Lad) and other Norwegian tales for all of you to enjoy. One of my favorites, Askeladden is the main character in many Norwegian folktales. Askeladden represents the small man who succeeds where all others fail. He always wins in the end, often winning the princess and half the kingdom as well.

In many folk tales, Askeladden is portrayed as the youngest of three brothers. Early in a typical tale, the older brothers appear to have much greater chances of success in life. For example, one brother might be extremely well read in books and newspapers. Another brother might be extremely competent in another area. In contrast, Askeladden is looked down upon as a loner or misunderstood eccentric, who spends too much time sitting by the fireplace lost in thought as he is poking the ashes, hence his name.

The "heroic" traits of Askeladden are most prominent in the stories told by Peter Christen Asbjørnsen and Jørgen Moe. The tales they collected present the "classical" Ash Lad. These are some of the stories I will be sharing with you. There may be some deviation from the original stories because I have had to translate them to English. Not an easy task I assure you.

I hope you enjoy these tales as much as I do. What I find so interesting is that even though these tales come from old folklore you can still place Askeladden in modern times as an individualist, free-thinker, and nonconformist. He is capable of thinking "outside the box", and is a true visionary. In contrast, the older brothers are more conformist and conventional. I was very lucky and have found a few video clips to go with some of these tales.

Before I start spinning my stories, I am going to share with you some of Norway to put you in the mood. Tomorrow I will take you on a little trip around Norway in my time machine.  Hope you decide to come along.


shelly said...

Have a great day! See you tomorrow.

li said...

Wonderful idea! I look forward to reading and learning. :)

Ellie Garratt said...

Sounds exciting; I'll be back!

Good luck with BuNaWriMo. I'll be cheering from the sidelines.

Ellie Garratt

Elisabeth Hirsch said...

SO fun :) Good luck.

Dafeenah said...

Oh I can't wait. I love seeing other places/cultures especially through the eyes of "locals".

Trisha said...

I visited Norway back in 2004 - only for 3 days though :(

Anonymous said...

Oh my, NaNO in the spring? Good luck with that. I had signed up in Nov. but it was during report cards, and a dozen other things that was just too much to do it all so I was a NaNO drop out :(
Good luck to you and I am posting under anonymous because it keeps kicking me out.
Tracy of mythoughtfulspot

Michael Di Gesu said...

I cannot keep up with you, sister, dear. I will try to do so right now.

What a lovely idea to hop in a time machine and go back to childhood. I am excited to read these charming tales of Norway's children....