Robin is a prolific writer, a retired educator and an extraordinary individual. I am currently reading his first book of the series, A Wizard of Dreams, and though his genre is different from my own, he addresses similar tensions: good and evil, tragedy and blessings, the known and the mysterious. It is an honor for me to introduce my colleague to you.
Please join me in welcoming Robin Chambers as he addresses his character--Myrddin.
Meet my character: the Wizard Myrddin
Myrddin is the Welsh form of Merlin, the wizard who is linked in legend to two kings: Vortigern and Arthur. He is a character that has appeared in a thousand stories, and has had many different names: Yahweh, Allah, Moses, Myrddin, Merlin, Prospero, Obi-Wan, Gandalf, Albus…: the wise old wizard with the long white beard and the magic staff and the mission to right wrongs.
This abiding character has been around since at least the dawn of the great monotheistic religions. There is the rod and the robe and the beard. "Ego sum alpha et omega; primus et novissimus..."
In the Book of Exodus, his name was Moses. Those were the days of miracle and wonder; God's was a long distance call. Moses' rod turned into a serpent and back again into a rod (these days magicians normally use flags or flowers). He turned water into blood, parted a sea conveniently red, laid claim to plagues of frogs and locusts, and brought commandments carved in stone alone down from a mountain. His was the voice of God on Earth, he said, in that grim place. Popes had not yet been invented...
I recommend that you read the story: "Merlin the Magician Rescues King Vortigern and Why the Red Dragon Is the Emblem of Wales", by W. Jenkyn Thomas. You'll find interesting and obvious parallels to another story you know well.
Check out artists’ impressions of the character Prospero, from Shakespeare’s The Tempest, on Google Images. You’ll find striking similarities. For the duration of the play, Prospero lived on an island that was certainly an outpost of Avalon. He had control over the weather. He had a magic spirit - Ariel - who did his bidding. He had books of spells, and was a powerful magician: So of course he had the long hair, and the beard, and the rod…
It was no surprise to find him as Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, and as Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter and…, though the rod had shrunk to the modern wizard’s wand. I had found him some years ago as Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars, where his rod had turned into a light sabre. It was still a rod, of course, but with the inside power out and visible...
But I had no need to think of yet another name for him, even though Myrddin himself suggested that in extreme age he had finally turned into Father Christmas (Book 3, chapter 60), because "Myrddin" was the name he used when he first introduced himself to Gordon (Book 1, chapter 57). I know, because I was there. So "Myrddin" was good enough for me.
Behind all evil lies the lust for power and the willingness to be corrupted by it. Millions have died in battle throughout the centuries, often in one of the many names of God. The main conflict is against such ignorance, and prejudice and abuse of power for personal gain.
After so many manifestations, Myrddin is wearing out. His goal now is to train Gordon to be his heir: in the hope that together they might make the world a better place before he finally dies.
The series title is Myrddin’s Heir. Book 1 – “A Wizard of Dreams” – introduces you to Gordon Bennett – a boy born with special powers and a mission to make the world a better place. On his eleventh birthday he is transported by the Tara Torque to Avalon, where he first meets the great wizard Merlin. He also meets King Arthur and his Army of the Slain; but I don’t want to give too much away…
You can find out more about it, and what people think of it, by visiting Facebook or Goodreads or Amazon. My website also has information you might find intriguing: http://www.myrddinsheir.com