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  • J. J. Hanna

Why Study Mythology?

I recently started a section of my blog about mythology. I've been interested in mythology since 2010, when I read Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. (If you haven't read those books, you should. They're hilarious and always make me laugh audibly, pausing to read the entire chapter out loud to whoever may be near enough to enjoy the joke with me.) I devoured the first Greek series, and then went on to devour the Kane Chronicles, another series by Rick about Egyptian mythology, and have been following him ever since.

But, in the long haul, I'm an author, and I probably won't end up writing about mythology, since if I did, it would end up trying to be a knock off of Percy Jackson, when the original is too beautiful for me to try to copy without being annoyed by my incompetence. So I'll leave that writing to Rick and the other skilled writers that are attempting it with various other mythologies. (Find out more about what they're doing in Rick's new imprint at Disney.)

So. Why am I taking the time to study mythology? Other than that it's interesting, I'm learning what I can in an effort to broaden my understanding of cultures and the origins of storytelling. Myths and legends get passed down within cultures to explain the world around them and help people know how to act.

I intend to start with the gold mine that is Greek mythology, looking for the lesser-known myths and sharing what I learn as I learn it. As I keep going, I may branch into other cultures as well. Roman, Egyptian, Norse, who knows? If you have some you're interested in, let me know in the comments or on my social media @AuthorJJHanna. For now, I'm following the old adage of "write what you know." I'm sure I'll branch out eventually, but there are loads of crazy stories to find in each culture, and I don't want to rush it.

I really love stories, and myths were some of the original stories, often told orally during family gatherings, each serving a purpose.

What are some things that interest you even though they aren't necessarily connected to your field of study? How are you learning more about them as you continue learning?


J. J. Hanna is attending Taylor University for a degree in Professional Writing. She has published multiple devotions and book reviews and draws comics about a stork named Lenard.

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