Rewriting History

Posted by on Apr 28, 2011 in General Chaos, Word of the Day | 2 comments

So I spent today trying desperately not to rewrite scenes from the novel I just finished. I’m trying to give it a rest. Instead, I rewrote history! The creation story of my werewolves in Brood is something I’ve known all along, but never really wrote out, so I took the time today to scrawl a few paragraphs on how they came to be what they are. I also decided based on some research that I’m going to drop the ‘s’ from Broods. It’s not a big deal, but one translation of the Völuspá–the skaldic poem I got the idea from–uses the singular Brood, and I think I like it better.

I’ve never tried to interweave the history of a story in with actual history before and I found it an interesting exercise. The original idea for this story came from research I was doing into Norse mythology for a completely unrelated story that never went anywhere. Funny how that works. I’ve tried not to burden the actual story with too much of the language and myth, but I think it adds a nice flavor that most werewolf tales don’t have.

Anyway, here goes the little taste of history:

The Brood of Fenrir descends from a race of werewolves enslaved by the barbarians of Scandinavia prior to the Viking Age. True origins lost to the centuries of oppression they endured, they became a fixture of Norse Mythology as the children of the wolf Fenrir and a giantess. Used as disposable shock troops by their masters, they ultimately became known as berserkers.

During the tenth century, several hundred of the Brood managed to fight their way to freedom and fled to Iceland. The Viking expansion into Iceland and Greenland thereafter was prompted by their relentless pursuit of the escaped slaves. When the Brood reached the shores of North America they integrated themselves into the extant cultures there and finally managed to elude their pursuers for good. Today they hide among humans in North America, their sub-culture a brutal reflection of their dark past.

This will at some point be a part of a longer history, but I had fun writing up that teaser today. What do ya think? I’d also be interested to hear about if any other authors out there have tried to do something similar.

Ryan’s Word of the day is garrulous, which means wordy. What do you think he’s trying to imply?

Wolf Photo by sometimesong found here.


  1. Sounds like a fun exercise and sounds like it could be true… in another universe. 🙂

    Well, except that I think it might be more credible to say that the vikings gave up. They did have at least one settlement in North America but weather and the very long journey probably kept them from doing more. If you add attacks by your ‘wolves they may have decided that it wasn’t worth it. And did the Brood integrate themselves with the natives or stayed completely clear of them? So are they like a separate Native American Tribe or?

  2. And a PS

    Almost makes me want to come up with my own history of something or another. Maybe something different…like Trolls or orcs or ….

    Now that could be interesting a family or clan, of orcs trying to make it in our time. I would have to explain how they got to North America and when and which generation this family was. Still could be interesting and fun.

    If I did go with that I wouldn’t make them all evil or mean. They tend to have tempers and many have joined the military through the years since they like to fight. Might be a YA book.

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