McCallum stopped by to talk a little bit about some mythology related to the book and the series and we've got a giveaway for you so be sure to enter via the Rafflecopter form at the end of this post. But before we get to all of that, here's a little bit more about A Hole in the Sea!
About the Book
Author: McCallum J. Morgan
Publication Date: January 28, 2016
Publisher: Little Bird Publishing House
Amazon | Little Bird Bookstore
Synopsis: Parsifal and Balder are trapped on the arctic ice after Lady Vasille and Lord Keazund vanish into the Sea. The magical Compass shows Parsifal dire warnings of storm and mermaid. Unable to resist the hole in the ice, the two friends find themselves cast adrift on an otherworldly Sea. A Sea filled with myth and dangerous monsters. Guided by Dioktes, a strange old man of doubtful motives, they come to the Port, a floating city of wreckage ruled by a desperate rabble. Lady Vasille has designs upon the Port and upon all of the Sea. If Parsifal isn’t careful, he and his friends will be caught up in her schemes once more. But it’s hard to be careful when you’re trying to survive.
About the Author
As a child, McCallum always wanted to write a book. He scribbled in notebooks, drew pictures, and lived largely in a world of make-believe. Into this fertile field a seed was planted. Notebooks began to fill and they didn’t stop. It was a soaring waltz with words among the silvery clouds and he loved it. He was thirteen.
It became his first novel, A Hole in the Ice, published when he was nineteen. He is now twenty and working on the third book in the Weather Casters Saga.
McCallum still draws and occasionally attacks an unfortunate piece of fabric with a sewing machine. He may be spotted around his home town of Bonners Ferry, Idaho, sporting his collection of bizarre clothing items, singing ‘Totale Finsternis’ or at the bakery near his home, drinking a caramel macchiato. His day job is log home finishing. He lives with his parents in a house perched on the hillside twenty miles south of the Canadian border and takes his tea with milk and sugar in a cup and saucer.
Myths & The Weather Casters Series
I’ve always loved myths and legends. From Greek mythology to the old folk tales of Europe, the kind of everyday stories about the goblin hauntings and changelings. I really love the book by Pierre DuBois called The Complete Encyclopedia of Elves, Goblins, and Other Little Creatures. It is full of fascinating stories from all over the world. It’s where I found the names Tan Noz (they were sort of dwarf sirens who used lights on the shore to wreck ships and then devoured the crews) and Lutins (essentially the mischievous elves of France, though their name literally means goblin). It’s also where I got the idea of Davy Jones as a sea monster (although I’m sure The Pirates of the Caribbean still had some influence on me).
Davy Jones is one of the many personifications of the sea, English in origin. Mostly, it seems the legends focus more on his locker and not so much the being himself. He is described as an old sailor who comes on land and can be recognized by his spongy green hands. According to DuBois, he seems to be a mass of tiny entities with a hive mind and devours an entire ship’s crew four times a year. In A Hole in the Sea, he was once the Weather Caster Dévid, cursed for rebellion.
Mermaids represent the sea and its changes. I prefer to separate them from Sirens, the bird headed singers and flesh eaters. I think mermaids should be dark and mysterious. My mermaids don’t have souls, like a lot of the elven creatures in many stories. They’re rather like the seductive Huldres of Norway, seeking to lure away young men who consequently lose their souls. Mine vary in form, having an exotic array of teeth, from fangs to baleen, and strange hair, eye, and skin colors. They are invariably beautiful but terrifying. They have cities and an entire subaquatic culture that we will get to see more of in book three.
My Weather Casters are down the line of nymphs or minor deities. They age slowly and are unnaturally beautiful with the ability to warp the wills of mortals. They aren’t entirely immortal, however, they can be killed and will eventually die of old age. They wield the traditional sea god powers over the weather (some mermaid stories actually have the mermaids granting fair or foul winds). I’ve even named the leader of the Weather Casters after Poseidon (I rebelled at first, but couldn’t come up with anything better or more fitting). The idea of weaving the weather came to me rather arbitrarily while I was gazing at a painting of a ship. Weaving is a universal art, practiced all over the world, and has its place in mythology, most notably the story of Athene and Arachne. Wikipedia says that in Scandinavia, Orion’s belt is known as Friggjar rockr, or Frigg’s distaff. Frigg was Odin’s wife and associated with the art of weaving (spinning was done with a distaff and spindle before the advent of the spinning wheel). And of course when you include spinning, there’s Rumpelstiltskin and Sleeping Beauty.
I’m playing fast and loose with the term mythology here, but a lot of the modern fairytales have older versions…more like legends, stories that people once believed were true. I have another book, A Field Guide to the Little People by Nancy Arrowsmith and George Moorse, that contains what I can only assume is the original tale of Snow White, without the magic apple and ending in death and destruction for the dwarves.
I think I’ve strayed from my point, if I had one…Mythology, Legends, Fairytales. They’re delightful, weird, horrible, completely entrancing, and most importantly, inspiring. They’ve fed my imagination from the beginning, and will continue to so. I hope you’ve enjoyed my dissertation (or enraptured gushing?). Thank you, Ashley and Paul, for having me on again!
Congratulations and Happy Book Birthday again to McCallum!
--Ashley & Paul