Writing a mini saga

Vijaya Subramaniam

A ‘mini saga’- does it sound like a paradox? A saga is, as any dictionary would describe it, a long story about events over a period of many years – a family saga, or the saga of heroic and adventurous tales of a particular region.

Historically considered, it is a prose narrative, believed to have originated in Iceland between 1120 and 1400, dealing with the families that first settled in Iceland and their descendants, with the histories of the kings of Norway, and with the myths and legends of early Germanic gods and heroes.

So by definition, a ‘saga’ is a series of historical events. Ballads fall into this category. Then, what would be a ‘mini saga’?

It would not be wrong to say that what a short story is to a novel, a mini saga is to a saga. Just as a short story has all the elements of a novel, the canvas on which it operates is smaller, mini sagas too, are complete stories on a much smaller canvas.

The author is retired Vice-Principal, Sardar Patel Vidyalaya, New Delhi. She has taught English for over three decades, authored text books and has conducted workshops for teachers and students. She can be reached at [email protected].

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