From 2001 to 2009, I had the opportunity to be the teaching assistant on several study tours about mythology and creative writing with Mark Vecchio, then a professor at Bard College at Simon's Rock and now an Academic Coach, Life Coach, and owner of The Conscious Learner. The tours were a fantastic experience not only in world travel, but in talking to exceptional undergraduates about the big ideas in myth, the universe, and everything. (The title of my blog comes directly from an anthology used for these tours.)
I've continued to write on my blog about ideas that started being developed on these study tours. Here are some of the highlights from my blog:
- Teutonic Mythology by J. Grimm
- Mythology 101 with Joseph Campbell
- The problem of mythology as explanation
- More on Myth
- Mythology vs. Fairy Tales part 1
- More Myth Definitions
- What Happens When Gods Go Underground part 1
- Jon Kabat-Zinn and Fairy Tales as Myth
- Some old notes on Tam Lin
- Dating Odysseus
- Candles, Jingle Dresses, Kites, and Prayers
- Wearing Your Symbol around Your Neck
- Sacred Objects Revisited
- Hope, Awe, and Wonder
- Fairy Tales, Ancient Roman Booksellers, and Goal Tracking
- Fairy Tales on TV
- "Is it by thine own will, or against it?"
I also posted several times from the myth trips while they were in progress. Included here is also a photo essay I wrote for Journey to the Sea and two guest posts from another trip chaperone, Richard P. Vaden.
- Hello from Kusadesi!
- Greetings from Delphi, Home of Apollo
- Last Bits on Greece
- Delphi, as inspired by elven_wolf
- Photographic Tour of Arthurian Locations
- Changing Collective Representations (and the British Museum)
- Geoffrey Ashe (excerpt)
- John North (excerpt
- Ireland study tour travelog from Richard P. Vaden
- Ireland study tour travelog #2 from Richard P. Vaden
Myth, the Universe, and Everything has hosted a number of guest blogs, many of them on the topic of mythology. Here are their entries:
- Mark J. Vecchio
- Randy Hoyt
- Alma Alexander
- Seanan McGuire
- Kelly Meding
- Alayna Williams
- Dylan Birtolo
- Thomas Scofield
- Daniel Tyler Gooden
- Melanie Nilles
- Sarah Schanze
- Mike Thomas of Blue Ridge Communities
For several years, I have been a member of the Mythopoeic Society, a group dedicated to the works of the Inklings, particularly C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien, as well as fantasy literature. I've also served on the jury for the Mythopoeic Fantasy Awards in both children's and adult literature.
If you are interested in fantasy literature, particularly in the vein of the Inklings, I highly recommend joining the group, which is a nonprofit. You can follow the conversation without being a member at the society's official Facebook page, the open Facebook group, and on Twitter.
In addition to writing about mythology, I often write, or post comments to other bloggers, about issues in diversity and inclusion, particularly in children's literature and SFF. One of the bloggers writing about this topic from a church-based perspective is my sister Tura Gillespie. Included here (on this list in progress) are links to her articles on the topic, as well as other blog posts about and organizations doing good work on inclusion in literature.
- We Need Diverse Books is one of my favorite organizations getting public attention on the issue of inclusion in literature
- Diversity in YA keeps a great tumblr running on topics in diversity and inclusion
- The blog for Lee & Low Publishers features a lot of great articles about diversity in publishing, including "Why Hasn't the Number of Multicultural Books Increased in Eighteen Years" and "Where's the Diversity, Hollywood? Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blockbusters Overwhelmingly White, Male."
- Back in 2009, Stacy Whitman of Tu Books compiled a list of "Multicultural SF/F for MG and YA," which remains useful, and Stacy's blog (and the Tu Books facebook page) are continual sources of diversity topics in the media
- "Sleeps with Monsters: How about those Hugos?" by Liz Bourke
- "People Like What They Like," on MtU&E
- "A Checklist to See Race/Culture in Kids/YA Books," by Mitali Perkins
- "Children's Books as Presents," by Tura Gillespie
- "Rethinking My Nativity Set," by Tura Gillespie (this is more on social justice in general than in literature)