Lauren-Jessica Bertini, independent author and blogger of the mixed race lifestyle blog, “Beautifully Blended”. Feel free to contact me anytime!
An Arthurianist still learning her craft.
Hi, I’m LJ and I’m an Arthurianist. (This is where everyone in the group therapy session says “Hi, LJ. Admitting you need help is the first step.”)
I jest, of course. Arthurian legend first perked up my ears when we read “The Once and Future King” and “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” in my high school English class. I loved the idea of King Arthur and all he stood for, as well as his loyal knights. Then I found the BBC series, “Merlin“. And that inspired me to take an Arthurian literature course my freshman year of college. Then it all began. We read Chretién de Troyes’ “The Story of the Grail“, about Sir Percival. I loved him and thought he was the most misunderstood little thing, and by the last day of that class, I told my professor I would be writing an adaptation of his story as a YA novel. (Even though I’d never written professionally in my life.)
So I researched the legend. I read. Every day. Watched every movie. Listened to every song. Studied every painting. Read every collegiate essay I had access to, from Oxford to Leeds, to other universities across the UK. Everything that included the legend– I started soaking it all up like a sponge. I was in love. I still am. And now…well, here we are. 🙂 And I’m still soaking it up! It’s been over six years and I still feel like I’ve just barely scratched the surface. There’s so much still to learn and the thought of that makes my heart glow.
In the meantime, however, I can start writing my own adaptations. I love Gawain dearly and have started a string of short stories for him. More female-centered, POC-centered and LGBT+-heavy stories are coming, too. The legend should be accessible to everyone. But while those are in progress, I developed this blog as a sort of outlet. It started as a podcast but my current living situation makes it a little difficult to record, with the room’s acoustics and all. So I’ve continued it with this! And I’m so grateful to have it, and equally grateful to anyone who cares to read it. 🙂
So that’s that. Welcome to Of Swords and Magic. Listen to some podcast episodes, read a blog article, buy some bookmarks or some tea, buy a story– whatever brings you here, welcome, and enjoy your trip to the Arthurian world. ❤