Zeus. Goddess. The Metanoia

aresgoddess

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I felt like Zeus needed a sex-change.  That was my first thought when I started playing with the idea of a genderfluid book set among the world of the Olympian Gods.   As selfish an a-hole as any mortal man has ever been, Zeus had all the worst traits of masculinity, having done such wonderful things as rape his sister and then force her to marry him.

Sunday school must have been truly disturbing back in the days of ancient Greece, and probably caused more than a little uneasiness among siblings.

So, I figured, let me put this rapacious and repulsive embodiment of the worst of masculinity into a female body and explore what happens to him. I sat down to write what I thought was going to be a forced femme/vengeance story, but then I just couldn’t seem to write it.Nothing was coming out that felt good to me.

I started and stopped more than a few times.  Put it away and wrote some other material.  Figured it was just one of those ideas that wouldn’t work, but it wouldn’t go away.  Every time I finished a story, the idea of doing a TG story featuring Zeus would come back to me and linger.

One day I stumbled upon a New Zealand television series called The Almighty Johnsons, in which the Norse Gods were reborn in modern times as a bunch a beer swilling kiwis,  so I thought to do something similar with the Greek Gods;  Zeus and company would be reborn as fashion models working for Olympian Fashions.

But the story just turned campy, and I felt like I wasn’t really getting at what I wanted to get at.   Freud had based a lot of his ideas regarding all the stuff percolating in our subconscious minds from his readings of the Greek myths, and I wanted the book to be something of a Freudian dream.

Finally, I started to just play around with images, taking classic representations of Zeus and other figures from Greek mythology and giving them a TG twist.

zeusbust

And then I had an image; Zeus, Lord of the Heavens and King of the Gods, would wake up with breasts.  How would he react?  What would he do?  How would having his body slightly feminized change or threaten or alter his personality?

Once I get started, I often will begin to dream my stories, to wake up with scenes playing out in my mind, or I will see them when I am on the train.   I also plunge into research, in this case learning a great deal about lesser known Greek Gods, such as Kybele, who was born both male and female, and whom makes an appearance in my novel.

The novel became about the relationship of the characters to themselves and others, and how those relationships would be altered as the gods changed not only in their bodies, but in their minds.  How would Zeus relate to the world as he became the goddess of marriage and wife to Hera?  What would happen to Ares as he transitioned from a God of War to a lesser goddess in service to Athena?  How would the goddesses react as their bodies and roles changed?

All in all, I have to say that writing Zeus.  Goddess. was one of the most rewarding experiences I have had as an author.  I was inspired and excited about the discoveries I made as the story unfolded, and I loved expanding my knowledge of Olympian mythology.  Now that one is done, and it is on to the next one, and in order to stave off my usual post publication depression, I am already working on the next one.

This time, I hope to do something I have never done.  I want to write a genderfluid comedy.  I don’t know what else it will be just yet, but I can’t wait to find out!

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Zeus. Goddess. The Metanoia

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