Shieldmaiden

In Old Norse skjaldmær, Shieldmaidens were the female Viking warriors who had chosen to fight alongside the men and are mentioned often in the sagas of Norse folklore and mythology. Through the mythologies they have become associated with the Valkyries, valkyrja, Odin’s warriors who choose those who will die in battle and take the fallen warriors to their place in Valhalla.
Warrior women inspired by the Shieldmaidens tend to find a place in popular culture fiction, especially in the fantasy genre. From Tolkien’s Éowyn who slew the Witch-King of Angmar in Lord of the Rings to DreamWorks’ How to Train Your Dragon with Astrid Hofferson and her trusty battleaxe (even though, much to my chagrin, she seems to have fallen out of that role in the new film and ends up being mostly emotional support for the protagonist…), female warriors provide balance in previously male dominated genre of action adventure and especially the parts that involve wading into battle with swords drawn.
Now, when one googles Shieldmaiden the second article to come up is on Lagertha, a historical figure who has been featured as a protagonist in History Channel’s Vikings. The show, though not perfect it its historical accuracy, brings to popular attention not only an amazing and inspiring historical figure, who’s list of accomplishments isn’t limited to becoming an Earl in her own right and the head of her own army, but also a firm affirmation that anyone, regardless of gender, can be a powerful warrior.
For more about the show, which I highly suggest that everyone at least have a look at even if historical drama is not your typical thing, you can find it here: http://www.history.ca/vikings/

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A Hello and an Introduction to the Blogger

Hello everyone! My name’s Laura, I’m new to WordPress, and there are a couple of getting to know you type questions that were suggested to me to introduce myself and my writing.
1 – What am I working on?
I am currently working on a young adult urban fantasy novel that’s rooted in Arthurian Legend and the British myths about faeries. It centres around a young woman named Lily who slowly discovers that one of her best friends is a little less than human and that she herself is the reincarnation of one of Arthur’s knights. From there, she gets embroiled in the race against time to find and awaken the King himself to fight against one of his greatest adversaries.
2 – How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Faeries, and the idea of going back to the original myths as inspiration for them, are starting to become more common in fiction, especially young adult fiction, but are still relatively unique. What I want to do to differ my work from others is to take inspiration from more obscure myths and legends or taking a different view of them. I also enjoy taking creatures that fiction has taught us are “supposed” to be the villain, like orcs and goblins, and setting them in the position of the hero.
3 – Why do I write what I do?
I write what I do because I’m in love with the idea of there being something in our world beyond what we can see and hear. Fantasy has been a staple of my fiction consumption since before I can remember and nothing makes me happier than contributing to the genre. I also studied history in school and researching into the world of King Arthur and the time around when he was said to have ruled is something that is important to me.
4 – How does my writing process work?
I like outlining, it works for me to know what is going to happen next. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the outline isn’t going to change as I think about the story and when sitting down to write. Though I will admit that the outlining process can bog me down at times, when I’m too worried about following it to let my characters speak for themselves but it is something I’m always working on. I also love to research before and during writing, though I always have to be careful that it doesn’t become a dangerous time trap and suck up all the allotted time I set aside to write.