Interview with Linda Foubister

When did you first start writing?
I started writing in elementary school. One of my first poems was an ode to a tabby cat (who sat on a mat). When I was a teenager, I won a national writing competition that celebrated a milestone in Canada’s history. High school allowed for many writing opportunities. I wrote, produced and performed in a Greek play about King Admetus and his Queen who had been transformed into a serpent. Then came my venture into writing murder mysteries. In the last ten years, I have been writing about mythology and its transformative power.
Who are your favorite authors?
I enjoy mystery novels by Reginald Hill, Sue Grafton and Marcia Muller. In the mythology area, Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell, Maria Gimbutas and Barbara Walker provide great insight into myths. I also like Malcolm Gladwell and Niall Ferguson.
What books inspired you to write about myths?
One Christmas, I received a large volume of Bulfinch’s Mythology. The introduction by Richard P. Martin told how a Boston bank clerk named Thomas Bulfinch read about the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill, California in 1848. The newspapers of the day referred to classical myths, proclaiming that the old myth of El Dorado, the land of gold, had come true.
Bulfinch thought that ordinary people would like to know the origin of these stories. So he wrote an article on Jason and the Argonauts for a newspaper and in doing so, found his talent. He wrote a series of “Stories of Gods and Goddesses,” leading to his first book, The Age of Fable, published in 1855. It sold out in just two months. Bulfinch went on to write more popular volumes on mythology.
Bulfinch believed that his purpose in telling the stories of mythology was to amuse and educate. I loved Bullfinch’s simple goal. Nowadays, the power of narrative is recognized as way to provide meaning, to give a sense of community by connecting a person to society, and to give a sense of place by connecting a person to the landscape. I believe that myths have value because they present timeless truths about the human condition and our place in the world.
What myths inspire you the most?
I like myths about the spirits of the landscape. To me, the idea that landscape elements are populated with spirits is very powerful and serves to energize the environment. The ancient Greeks envisioned nymphs as nature goddesses that presided over natural features. Nereids were sea nymphs, Naiads were the spirits of freshwater such as streams, lakes and fountains, and Dryads embodied the various trees. The vitality of the natural features depended upon the health of the nymphs - a great lesson for today.
Are you working on another book?
Yes, my next book will be looking at the way myths can inspire creativity.
Published 2013-09-24.
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Books by This Author

The Key to Mythic Victoria
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 73,420. Language: Canadian English. Published: March 9, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Social Science » Mythology, folklore and legend, Nonfiction » Travel » Specialties & interests
The "Key to Mythic Victoria" unlocks the secret to understanding the myths that define Victoria, the capital city of British Columbia. From the distant past when Hayls the Transformer changed the landscape through the more recent past when modern Argonauts searched for El Dorado to the present day, the myths and symbols surrounding Victoria bring its underlying layers to life.
Goddess in the Grass: Serpentine Mythology and the Great Goddess
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 74,140. Language: English. Published: March 7, 2011. Categories: Nonfiction » Social Science » Mythology, folklore and legend
The serpent – is it a symbol of evil or a form of the life-renewing Great Goddess? This fascinating investigation unlocks the archetype of the Serpent Goddess that lies hidden in the world's myths, fairy tales, and images. This updated edition includes additions to the dictionary of over 125 forms of the Serpent Goddess.