Thursday, April 5, 2012

F is for the Fianna. Obviously.

This is going to be super dorky, but whatever, I am writing these around midnight.

I first read Fianna stories when I was about 12 years old, and one of my many roots as a storyteller is miles deep in them still. I know I know, shame on me for being a 100% Hungarian storyteller and not coming up with something right off the back of a horse on the steppes, but then again, things you don't grow up with are always much more fascinating when you are a kid. I remember being absolutely enchanted by Gods and Fighting Men (usually skipped straight to the Fianna parts), to the extent that the first imaginary crush I ever had was Oisín (and the rest of the class could have Leonardo DiCaprio all to themselves). I also wanted to be a bard, on the side, and this was about 10 years before I found out I can actually be a professional storyteller. I filled notebooks with my retellings of the Fianna legends, even though I had no clue why I was writing them.

Gods and Fighting Men was not translated to Hungarian back then, and I could only read it painfully slow in English. But I did anyway. A few years later in high school I was digging around in the back of the library where all the foreign-language books were piled up without any semblance of order, and I found Rosemary Sutcliff's book, the High Deeds of Finn Mac Cool, and I was in love once again. I actually told a Fianna story for an English competition, but I didn't win anything (they told me the story was too serious for my age. Right after my music teacher told me my voice was too deep for singing Eric Clapton songs).

When I actually decided that I wanted to tell stories to people Fianna legends were among the first I have ever told - to kids in the sailing camps, to classmates, to anyone who would stay put long enough to listen. I still tell them, and they make me feel all warm and fuzzy every time. I have spent the last 14 years with these guys, I want to see anyone top that. Quoting Dolores Hydock: "They don't make men like that anymore..."

Also, yay to White Wolf for making the Fianna a werewolf tribe for Werewolf: the Apocalypse. They are tons of fun to play!

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