What the authors say about their work: first in an occasional series.
We’ve had such a strong response from educators wanting to use Dragon Eaters in their classes as well as from readers with historical backgrounds, we thought we’d ask the authors to tell us a bit about the genesis of their contributions to Heroika 1: Dragon Eaters:
Our first writer up to bat is Water Rhein, author, explorer, publisher, telling us about his process for developing “Aquila of Oyos“:
“Aquila of Oyos” Mythical/Historical Genesis by Walter Rhein.
I had a bit of fun while writing “Aquila of Oyos” for Janet Morris’s “Heroika 1: Dragon Eaters” anthology. This was the first in a proposed series of anthologies connected by concept and ordered chronologically from ancient past to future, and each story in the first book must be about dragons. Because of this archetypal requirement, I thought my story would need a certain weight that only an attachment to historical or mythological figures could provide.
Although this story is not dependent on the reader’s awareness of the prevalence of mythological allusions, they do enrich the experience when the connections are perceived. The most obvious clue is the inclusion of a character named Prometheus. This is a case where all you have to do is research Prometheus’s role in mythology and the connection is made (hint: it has something to do with fire). In “Aquila of Oyos” I propose a theory for where Prometheus’s fire actually came from.
Another character name in this tale is named Prospero, a name made famous by Shakespeare in “The Tempest.” In Shakespeare, Prospero is a sorcerer and illusionist. Therefore, to have a character named Prospero in my story would be waste a great opportunity if that character didn’t also dabble in illusion…
Aquila is Latin for eagle and was a prominent symbol in ancient Rome. Rome is an empire that falls, as does the empire of dragons. The least obvious name I used was Oyos, for Aquila’s mountain. By the end of the story, the top has been removed from the mountain changing it from a dragon’s spire into a mountain topped with columns of seared stone.
After human beings gained control of the dragon mountain, the name got changed to Olympus… but by now you’ve guessed that.
Read the entire story Aquila of Oyos in Heroika 1: Dragon Eaters, edited by Janet Morris, on Kindle, Nook, or in a deluxe trade paper edition. Or hear Rob Goll’s narration of Heroika 1: Dragon Eaters, available from Audible.com and Amazon.