Monday, November 24, 2014

Revisiting Switzerland and the “Legend of the Mystic Knights”

More about Switzerland and my novel, "Legend of the Mystic Knights".

As you may know by now, “Legend of the Mystic Knights” is set in an alternate reality where the Middle Ages have never ended. You may also have guessed that I chose Switzerland as the setting of my novel.

There are numerous Swiss locations which I have described in my novel. If you did not see the previous blog, there is more about Switzerland here.   The city of Lucerne- There are several locations in the city of Lucerne that I describe in my novel.

Kapellbrücke- Which is a wooden covered bridge (the oldest in Europe) leading into Lucerne. Inside on the roof are triangle shaped paintings. In my novel, these paintings show knights defeating evil monsters. I also describe the water tower which sits at the end (in the novel it is used as a lookout post).

Church of St. Leodegar- One of the most important landmarks in Lucerne. I tried to describe this church accurately in my novel, particularly its bright white interior.

Traveling through the Alps, a group of knights must travel over the Teufelsbrücke, or Devil’s Bridge. This is a bridge which spans over the Schöllenen Gorge crossing the Reuss River.

In the novel I actually describe the legend about this bridge. The bridge was so difficult to build over the gorge that the devil offered to build it. The devil’s price for his work was he was to get the soul of the first to pass over it. The devil was tricked by a herdsman who sent a goat over first. Angered, the devil picked up a huge boulder to smash the bridge. A quick thinking older woman, carved a cross into the boulder, and the devil dropped the huge stone and fled. The travelers in my novel also pass the boulder which is supposed to be the same one the devil had picked up.

Having my novel full of monsters, I decided to add a monster unique to Switzerland. The tazlewurm is a cryptic beast which inhabits the Alp Mountains. This creature has the body of a snake, with front legs only and the reptilian version of a cat’s head. It has a poisoners breath which can kill a man in seconds.

One of the major reasons I choose Switzerland, is because of its sheer beauty. As a writer it is a joy to describe vividly about valleys with running rivers and streams, located between mountains.

Here is an excerpt of my novel:

White caps appeared at the tops of the rocky mountain peaks, but below were fields, painted green. The contrast between the emerald fields and white mountain caps against a crystal blue sky overwhelmed William, and he felt like he was looking upon the face of God.

When I was a child I saw a Disney movie “Third Man on the Mountain” (1959), this was a movie about a boy who wants to conquer the mountain that killed his father. Ever since I saw this movie, I had a fascination with the Alps, and someday I hope to be able to see it in person. Side Note: This was this movie that was the inspiration for the Matterhorn bobsled rides at Disney Parks.

I hope that this blog has allowed you to get a better understanding of why I choose Switzerland, and also to give you a better appreciation for this country. I too hope, never having been there, that my research and descriptions do some justice to the beauty and history of this country.

As always, thank you for visiting and if you want you can leave a comment, also if you have time visit my author’s website:
If you wish to purchase “Legends of the Mystic Knights” visit my publisher’s website, here there is a link to the novel in numerous languages:
To my American readers, I want to wish every one of you a happy and safe Thanksgiving.

Next time: Revisiting my wrestling days. How being a wrestler, helped me write a novel.


  1. i haven't read your novel yet William but I am sure that the fictional environment that you have created, based as it is on real places in Switzerland, makes the story that much more interesting.

  2. William, I love the story of the Teufelsbrucke and how he devil was foiled. I'm not normal a reader of fantasy books but the excerpts of what you have written has been so entertaining I may have to change that thinking. I do very much hope you do get to see Switzerland - maybe visit the places you've written about.

  3. Your post brings to mind the many tunnels I drove though last September on the short drive I took through Switzerland. They have tunnels down to an art. Even stranger if how our GPS kept trying to get us a "ferry" at one point, and we were like there is no lake, the GPS is going crazy again. But no. Turns out it meant train ferry. We could have turned around, but thankfully the toll person could accept Euros, we didn't even have any fancs yet. We were first and line and no idea of what to expect. A long train pulled up about 10 minutes later and we drove onto it. From there, a 20 minute or so ride commenced through a very long and dark tunnel as our car jostled around a bit on the platform. Only in Switzerland...

  4. You've obviously created a fascinating 'real' world in your fantasy novel.
    P.S. I don't want to meet a tazlewurm

  5. I once traveled to Lucerne and took a beautiful hike up "Harder Thun" the nearest hillside. At the top we could hear bells tinkling in the distance and looked to down to find that they were the collars on the cows hundreds of feet below us. I'll never forget that trip!

  6. Beautiful photograph which creates the setting for your blog.

    I have a sudden urge to visit Switzerland! However I need to factor in a few more sun holidays before I face the big chill!

  7. Have been going to Switzerland since I was 6 years old. It's beautiful but so dull. Apart from Geneva that is by far the most intersting city.

  8. I would love to visit Switzerland. It is beautiful! I think you picked a great scene set up for your book. :)

  9. It was interesting to read why you choose Switzerland as the setting for you novel and how you incorporated real bits of it. I hope you get to see Switzerland some day soon.

  10. This was interesting to know , why you have selected Switzerland. Its magical beauty appeal to all. I am surprised to know about devil helping in building bridge but humans seems much clever to deceive him as well.