Talking Tove in Tokyo

The 20th Anniversary Conference of the Finnish Institute in Japan was devoted to Tove Jansson: Visual Artist. Writer. Landscape Enthusiast. Woman. I was delighted to give a keynote lecture on living art everyday like Tove. It was the one thing I didn’t get pictures of! I have started the overwhelming task of uploading all the…

Tove in Tokyo

I have been invited by the Finnish Institute of Japan to give a keynote lecture…

Suomenlinna

During @WorldCon75 I played hookey for a day to go to Suomenlinna, the island in Helsinki’s harbour with my friend and ‘borrowed cousin’ Laura. It was a beautiful day, but as I got to the harbour I saw there was a thick bank of fog over the water. It made the day a little more…

Louhi at @FolkloreThursday

My introduction to Louhi, witch of the north in The Kalevala, appears at @FolkloreThursday today. Folk familiar with my work know that she appears in my stories in Dream Book which were inspired by Finnish mythology in both The Kalevala and The Kanteletar. Some helpful links: The best translation of The Kalevala; the only English…

#FolkloreThursday: Palakainen

My Finnish murder ballad-based story ‘Palakainen’ first appeared in the Mythic Journeys magazine. It’s included in the Dream Book collection from Fox Spirit Books. Like all the tales in Dream Book I wanted to keep the original well in mind; I tried to capture the feel of the Kanteletar in the language, giving it something of…

Finns in Edinburgh: St Giles

Laura and I wandered in to see the Thistle Chapel at St Giles and managed to catch one of the tours. Chivalry at its most ceremonial. And I couldn’t resist a chuckle at the Albany Aisle. Silence please!

Finns in Edinburgh: Canongate Kirk

Of course I was mostly interested in the cemetery — me and the magpies! The poet Robert Fergusson is buried there. While Laura and Risto looked around the church, I wandered among the gravestones. Lots of history here.

Idleness

I know it appears as if I am doing nothing at all, but I promise there is a lot going on behind the scenes — much writing, some news to share soon, and more background on Finnish myths and folklore for Dream Book. It’s true too that there has been much time for amusement and…