Hello everyone! I hope y’all had safe and happy holidays, as well as a safe, fun New Year’s! How is the new year treating you so far? Good? Bad? Eh?
Branching off of my last post before the giveaway posts (which you can read here if you haven’t already! Trust me, it’s relevant to this post), I want to talk about a new piece that I started in late March when it came to me one night as insomnia struck me hard. I’d been thinking about this Brazilian myth of the Iara mermaid since I had researched about it in late 2017, but didn’t do anything with the thoughts until the following spring. I decided to take these thoughts and twist them into a short story based on the original myth, but obviously changing it a little to fit my idea of the Iara and the story line.
Hopefully you’ve brushed up on that post by now so that you know all the cool historical details behind the myth, which may or may not have ties to the story I’m currently writing. The Iara mermaid had quite the journey in its formation, and I’d like my short story to kind of reflect the frustrations of her formation and of the history behind its development. I don’t often put research into small details like names for instance, but for this story, I wanted to make as many ties to Brazilian culture and mythology as I could, while maintaining my own style and voice, of course.
This story, which I’ve titled Mirage Mermaid, follows a young man by the name of Jando. Jando is from a small fishing village near the coast of Brazil; he lives in a small hut with his parents and two younger twin siblings, Odeta and Odon. The coastal villages had been suffering of food scarcity, as Jando explains in the beginning. Though the village was mostly self-sufficient with their fishing game, they also planted some crops, but their food source was heavily fish-based. The fish had been scarce and the waters were rougher than usual, preventing the villagers from going out too far in attempt to find more fish. The closest villages that were inland were too far to travel to in a timely manner, and the closest ones were also fishing villages, struggling like they were. People were starving and some were being killed, and rumors spread that the Ipupiara, a Brazilian mythological creature, had returned and placed a curse on the coastal villages.
In the original myth, the Iara mermaid was one being, a young woman, but in my retelling of the myth, I made the Iara a whole species. The “ladies of the water” are an entirely female species of mermaids; they have an inhuman beauty in both looks and voice, but they do not wish harm on humans. In fact, the Iaras were created to protect humans from their counterparts–the Ipupiaras, a hideous male species who bring chaos, food scarcity, and death to seaside dwellers. They feed on the villagers they terrorize–both on their fear and on their bodies, though the victims are mostly male.
Sound like a story you’d be interested in? Well maybe one day you’ll get to read it, and maybe I’ll even extend it into a novel! Only time will tell. Catch you next time in a fantasea!
The zoomed in picture used to represent this post was taken from Pinterest, and the original piece is from Deviant Art, by an artist named miss-hena. Please support her beautiful work!