Our guest, Rebecca Buchanan, has been a feature in the pagan fiction community for a while, we are pleased to have read her latest release, a fine collection of ranging from fantasy to scifi to mythological retellings entitled A Witch Among Wolves.She is the editor of Eternal Haunted Summer. Her short stories, poems, and essays have been published in a number of different venues. When she is not editing EHS, she is also the Editor-in-Chief of Bibliotheca Alexandrina, the publishing arm of Neos Alexandria. She also blogs fairly regularly at BookMusings: (Re)Discovering Pagan Literature at PaganSquare and Gods Among the Stars: Paganism in Genre Fiction at Luna Station Quarterly. She recently took time out of her busy editing schedule for a little interview about the book.
Hi Rebecca, thanks for being here. I really enjoyed your anthology and I’m happy to have you here. Can you briefly describe the anthology?
Rebecca Buchanan: Thanks for inviting me! A Witch Among Wolves, and Other Pagan Tales is a collection of five of my short stories. Each is a different genre — science fiction, contemporary horror, a political tale, an eco-fable, and an urban fantasy — but all feature Pagan/polytheist themes. For instance, “Alexander’s Heart,” set in a far future ruled by the descendants of Antony and Cleopatra, follows the Captain of a solar barque and his crew as they try to safely deliver the Pythia of Delphi to a colony far from Earth. The title story, “A Witch Among Wolves,” stars a traditional Lithuanian ragana as she negotiates with a pack of shape-shifting wolves for access to their hidden valley.
My next anthology, A Serpent in the Throat, and Other Pagan Tales, also features a variety of genres, but each story contains strong Pagan/polytheist themes.
How long have you been a practicing pagan?
Rebecca: Oh, gosh …. Over twenty years. I started having serious problems with the Church in college, but continued to go through the motions. As soon as I set out on my own, though, I fully embraced Paganism: the altar, the festivals, the hymns to the Gods and Goddesses, the works.
Is there a particular mythology you’re found of?
Rebecca: Greek. Hands down, that is my favorite. I’ve always been most strongly drawn to those stories, so, when I finally embraced Paganism, I came out as Hellenic.I have a bit of a soft spot for Egyptian and Norse mythology, too, but Greek is definitely at the top.
Can you recall the first myth you read?
Rebecca: Not the first book, no, but I can recall several books which deeply affected me as a child. Augustus Caesar’s World by Genevieve Foster; The Enchanted World series from Time-Life; The Gods and Goddesses of Olympus by Aliki; The Golden Fleece and the Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles by Padraic Colum and Willy Pogany; Pagan Grace and Pagan Meditations by Ginette Paris; Pegasus by Marianna Mayer and KY Craft; The Trojan War by Olivia Coolidge; to name just a few.
That seems a nice list, particularly for those who’d like to investigate the Greco-Roman pantheons themselves. What inspired you to write the stories in Witch Among Wolves?
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