There are so many different Mythology and Mythological Beings recorded. Some are very popular and well known, others not so much. There are many similar beings, yet different depending on the culture it’s based in. The definition of Myth covers about anything in the Urban Fantasy/Fantasy realm to me.
This week we have:
Fantasy author Sarah-Jane Lehoux
Talking of Jenny Greenteeth.
I first fell in love with folklore and mythology when I was but a wee lass, between potty training and learning to tie shoe laces. While I was visiting my maternal aunt and cousins, I made the acquaintance of a kindly old couple who thought I was just the cutest thing. They bought me sweets and a story book about fairies.
I adored that book. I learned to read at an early age, and I believe it was that book that aided me. I devoured every word, every picture, and had dreams of wondrous and wicked little creatures. That book influenced so much of my life, from what other kind of books I sought out, to what courses I took in anthropology. I think the biggest irony is that the book has since been lost and I can’t for the life of me remember the name of it.
|(Illistration from Faeries by Brian Froud|
and Allen Lee)
Why? Probably because I have a fear of water stemming from watching Jaws when I was five. While in a lake or a pool or even a bathtub, I’ve often had the sense that something was swirling around beneath me, just waiting for grab me and pull me to a watery death.
It’s no wonder then, that in two of my books, water hags make an appearance. Jenny Greenteeth (or Jinny or Ginnie among other variations depending on locale) is described as a green-skinned, with long, stringy green hair and viciously sharp teeth. She prefers children and the elderly, and like a crocodile, drags her victims underwater, drowns them, and then eats them.
Some folklorists believe that Jenny and other water hags were invented to keep children away from water. Others believe that perhaps victims were given to the water, sacrifices to appease the spirits. In either case, it’s pretty damned spooky.
In Masquerade (the third book in the Sevy Series), I made Jenny as terrifying as her legend can be, but with an extra added “Yikes!” She is one of a few dozen or so fairies that ambush a passenger ship and massacre the people onboard. Riding a demonic kelpie (a water horse that also drowns and eats its victims), she attacks Revik. He is able to escape her grasp, but another passenger is not so lucky.
Red Rover, a comedic fantasy, Jenny takes on a goofier appearance and attitude, and is more concerned with breast health awareness and the quality of her scales than the hapless fisherman she has snagged.
I think this is why I’m drawn to fantasy: creatures can be interpreted any which way the author or the reader intends them to be. Scary, funny, even sympathetic…there’s room for all sorts of varieties on the stories we grew up with.
You can find Sarah-Jane Lehoux and learn more about her and her books at:
Her site: Sarah-janelehoux.com
Blog: Work in Progress
Facebook Page: Sarah-Jane Lehoux: Author of Fantasy & Horror Fiction
You can find Sarah-Jane Lehoux's artwork (and a bigger picture of Jenny) at:
You can Purchase Print or Ebooks of the Sevy Series:
Learn more on ALL of Sarah-Jane Lehoux's books.