Tuesday’s Overlooked A/V: Härmä

Härmä In the plainlands of Ostrobothnia, Western Finland, a tradition prevails, according to which the first-born son inherits everything and the remaining offspring must fend for themselves. The law has been cast aside in many areas and groups of men, knife-wielding thugs, nicknamed ‘toughs’, control the fields. The blade rules the land. ONCE UPON A…

Finland: Heading South

Finally, a little time to finish my Finland odyssey! I just typed “the end” on the doc for White Rabbit, my supernatural crime novel. It’s taken a bit longer to complete it (over a year) because it didn’t have a deadline, so anything with a deadline cut ahead of it in line. As I was…

Finland: Churches

Helka, Antti and Eila took me out for my last full day in the north so we could see some lovely sights. There are a couple of interesting  churches in Kemi, one very modern but based on the old medieval style and the other with remnants of its medieval forebears. A little more history on…

Six Sentence Sunday: Palakainen

A simple concept: six sentences to win you over. Here’s mine, from “Palakainen,” one of the stories from Unikirja. As a special treat, you can read the entire story at Mythic Journeys. See the rest of the titbits at Six Sentence Sunday. And think about buying the ebook version of Unikirja. Kiitos.  Swanlike she was…

Tuesday’s Overlooked Films: The Long Kiss Goodnight

I got into a discussion on Twitter with Anne Billson about Finnish music and films, and we both lamented the lack of love in Hollywood for Renny Harlin when people like Ridley Scott continue to be trumpeted. I suppose I have a weakness for a Finnish director who always manages a little nod to his…

Publications: Blink Ink & Scribing Ibis

Here’s the lovely package you get when you order the Noir issue of Blink|Ink. And you will order it, won’t you? It’s got a lovely story by me and gruesomely hilarious one by Mr B (Paul Brazill) and loads of great photography as well as some terrific stories told in a flash — and for…

Friday’s Forgotten Books: Tales from Moomin Valley

Known and loved around the rest of the world, Tove Jansson’s Moomin books seldom get exposure beyond the Finnish-American communities in this country. I suppose it’s because Moomintroll himself often presents a rather melancholy figure, who feels sad without everybody around him demanding that he cheer up. Shock! When you look at the aggressively happy…

Tuesday’s Overlooked Film: Jade Warrior

FUN WITH SLEDGEHAMMERS OR“IN SEARCH OF THE SAMPO” When did these filmmakers look into my dreams? I am, perhaps, one of a small number who form the ideal audience for this film that spins together Finnish mythology and wu xia action, but I’m sure its magic will appeal to a wide audience—if they can get…

Publication: Finnish Charms

I had nearly forgotten about this: the Mythic Journeys folks have been going through some interesting transitions (which seems entirely appropriate) but the journal is back at last. I gave this paper at the Forging Folklore Conference at Harvard University in May 3-5 2007. Great conference! Peg and Hannah put together a terrific bunch of…