• Jem Roberts

Jersey: The Cream

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Happy Folklore Thursday, dear pledgers! 35% up the mountain, and no time to set up camp!

We're rather spoiled for choice with today's @FolkloreThursday theme of 'Island lore', as all 77 of our tales could be called Island lore! We have stories from Shetland, the Orkneys, a whole host of Hebridean islands, the Isles of Man and Wight, and the Channel Islands. But we've plumped for one of the furthest away tales of all, deep down in the sunny south, at Jersey.

It's always fun to revisit the source material of tales we've retold, and to be reminded of what we used, what we adapted, what we felt was best left in the past, and so on. For THE GIFT HORSE, we were inspired by a folktale summary as basic as this one on the BBC, and used it as the starting point for a more involving narrative, with a great villain. We also added a grandfather for William, who is the one who suggests and collects the mistletoe which saves his life.

People often ask if we have personally visited all of the places where our 77 stories are based, and the answer is: if we were that rich, we'd shove £10k in the pot and publish Tales of Britain tomorrow. But the idea is that every tale must make you WANT to visit the place – yes, even if it's just London or somewhere equally familiar. And we certainly want to stand on the beach at Bonne Nuit Bay, and try to find the jagged rock which was once a villainous shape-shifting water spirit who tried to drown William in water horse form – but was rendered harmless by the application of a sprig of festive decoration.

One day we will – just as we will get to 100% and have this road atlas of stories in your hands as soon as we can. But the book will only be in your hands if you keep spreading the word, and encouraging friends, family and folkies of your acquaintance to click on of the pre-order options on your right!

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Comments

Matthew Wood
Matthew Wood says:

Hello Jem,

Perhaps you have seen this already, but can I distract your gaze to this site - http://www.wondersofbritain.org/? It is devised and maintained by Andy Evans, lecturer in Computational Geography at Leeds, expert in the geography of Ancient British and Welsh myths, and all-round nice chap. Andrew does, in fact, go and visit these places (one of the perks of being a profesional geographer), and his work uncovering the true locations of the myths of the Historia Brittonum is inspiring and entertaining. I would also recommend his paper on The Levitating Altar of Saint Illtud which you can find via the site map. I hope you find something to enjoy there.

Matthew Wood

October 16, 2017

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