History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

Love in What If I’m a Merfolk?

| December 16, 2021

Some of the poetry in What If I’m a Merfolk? revolves around love among the merfolk, or love between a merfolk and a human. While merfolk and humans are often antagonistic toward each other, that isn’t always the case. My short story, “Catch,” is one example of this, telling the tale of a young woman and […]

Mythology in What If I’m a Merfolk?

| October 19, 2021

There are many myths and legends about merfolk, other sea creatures, and the gods and goddesses that are the patrons or inhabitants of the seas. Many of the poems in What If I’m a Merfolk? touch on this mythology, but none as much as “A Paean to the Goddesses,” a poem that pays respect to goddesses […]

Defending Home in What If I’m a Merfolk?

| July 29, 2021

One of the themes that runs through a number of the pieces in What If I’m a Merfolk? is the idea of merfolk defending their home. While the ocean is vast and has plenty of hiding places for creatures like merfolk, it’s still important to them to defend their territory from things like incursions of humans […]

Looking for Some Fantasy Reads?

| June 24, 2021

If your idea of a great summer read is something from a world of fantasy, I’ve got a couple of books that might fit the bill! What If I’m a Merfolk? spans traditional fantasy and more modern fantasy, but presents a load of interesting merfolk poetry and a handful of short stories, all dealing with […]

Environmental Degradation in What If I’m a Merfolk?

| May 13, 2021

Environmental degradation of the oceans is a very real threat, and it would also be a threat to merfolk populations. So some of the poems in What If I’m a Merfolk? deal with the topic of environmental threats to undersea populations. These poems may not reflect the additional issues of polluted oceans for us land […]

Self-Acceptance in What If I’m A Merfolk

| March 16, 2021

When I collected the poems that I’d written for What If I’m a Merfolk?, one of the themes that stood out for me was one of self-acceptance. These poems often revolved around the idea of a person realizing that they were a merfolk and learning to love the changes to their bodies. But there are also […]

Becoming a Merfolk

| January 7, 2021

Several of the poems and some of the stories in What If I’m a Merfolk? revolve around the idea of someone becoming a merfolk when they previously were not. In some cases, it’s a hereditary condition that emerges at a certain point in a character’s life. In other cases, it’s a blessing bestowed by another […]

“For the Weird Girls Who Want to be Mermaids” in What If I’m a Merfolk?

| November 26, 2020

My story “For the Weird Girls Who Want to be Mermaids” was one of those stories that came from an imaginative mind and a bit of the real world. What if that dry patch of skin wasn’t actually dry skin, but was scales finally emerging from beneath your human skin? And what are the choices […]

What If I’m a Merfolk?: Big Fish

| October 20, 2020

The new story that appears in What If I’m a Merfolk? is “Big Fish,” which is a very short flash piece. It’s told in an unusual style for me, in that it’s a first person story in which the narrator responds to unstated questions from an unseen and unheard second character. But for this story, […]

Things in the Water that Will Kill You

| September 8, 2020

When asked to summarize what I write, I often tell people “I write about things in the water that will kill you.” And while not all of my stories share that distinction, I have more stories about murderous aquatic creatures than nearly any other topic. I’ve written about vodyanoi, nixes, the stromkarl, selkies, and, of […]