Emil Hjörvar Petersen, poet and fantasy writer

Ljósmyndari: Erlendur Jónsson

Emil Hjörvar Petersen (photo by Erlendur Jónsson)

Emil Hjörvar Petersen, born in 1984, is an Icelandic author of poetry and speculative fiction. He received the New Voices Grant of the Icelandic Literature Center in 2008 for his second poetry collection, Fox. Two years later, A Saga of Survivors: Hödur & Baldur, the first novel in a trilogy, was published, one of the first Icelandic offerings in the fantasy and science fiction genres. This trilogy tells the tale of the Norse gods that survived Ragnarök, and their adventures, voyages and struggles. Refur_kápumynd-1-175x271

The second installment in the trilogy, Verge of Ruins, was published in 2012, and the third, Nidhoggur, in 2014. The trilogy has received very positive reviews, and is now part of the syllabus in Icelandic high schools and colleges.

saga-eftirlifenda-níðhöggur-175x251Emil has participated in several international writer conferences and conventions, including the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts in Florida, USA, SweCon in Sweden and Archipelacon in Finland, at which he was interviewed by Gregory Pellechi (in English) about the difficulties of the Icelandic language for writing science fiction.

His third poetry collection, Edible Cake Decorations, was published in 2014 by Meðgönguljóð, and in the same year, Fox was published in Ukrainian by Krok Publishers at the 21st Lviv International Publisher’s Forum.

Emil holds an MA in Literature and Cultural Studies, an MA in Publishing and Editing and a BA in Comparative Literature.

He gives regular talks on creative writing and fantasy/science fiction, both publicly and academically. In 2014 he worked with the Reykjavik UNESCO City of Literature on the project ‘Fantasies in Reykjavik’, where he ran a series of presentations and supervised workshops.

Emil lives in Lund, Sweden, where he is currently working on short stories, a new poetry collection, an interactive story-game funded by the Educational Materials Development Fund, and, of course, a new novel.

“A new and fresh view on the Norse gods … thrilling from the first page … a knock-out Icelandic fantasy.” —Morgunbladid Daily (a major Icelandic newspaper, on the trilogy).

Panel: Icelandic Literature as an Inspiration