Diana Paxson's Journal

Feathers from a Raven's Nest

  • Social capital: less than 10 
Diana L. Paxson
20 February 1943
Berkeley, California, United States
Welcome to Westria
Mills College - Oakland CA (1960 - 1964)
University of California - Berkeley - Berkeley CA (1964 - 1966)
Interests: (25)
asatru, avalon, books, diana l. paxson, diana paxson, diane duane, fantasy, heathenry, hrafnar, lois mcmaster bujold, marion zimmer bradley, odin, reading, ring of troth, sca, science fiction, seidh, society for creative anachronism, speculative fiction, the troth, traveling, troth, walking, westria, writing
A succinct and rather breathless autobiography--

I was born in Detroit. I have apologized for this several times, but since we left when I was three and my father got out of the Army and got a job in the emerging think-tank industry in Los Angeles, I don't remember anything about it anyway. I grew up in a town at the northwestern edge of LA called Pacific Palisades, between the ocean and the Santa Monica Mountains. I spent most of my free time reading, drawing horses, and hiking in the hills. In the summer I went to Camp Trinity in far northern California, which I loved. They had horses, and let you pluck chickens and build things. My last year of High School my father was on loan to the Defense Department, so I was sent to a strange, Gothic boarding school in Maine where I got good enough grades to get into Mills College.

I adored Mills, where for the first time in my life there were lots of people interested in the same things I was. My nick-name was "Diana Paxson the Anglo-Saxon"--I didn't realize that would be prophetic. The chaplain, Dr. Hedley, was a wonderful man who held dual ordination as a Methodist and Episcopalian, and was the first priest to use female acolytes. Also the first priest I had encountered who really moved power when he conducted the service. So I became an Episcopalian and president of Canterbury Club.

Alas, the rest of the Episcopal Church wasn't on the same wavelength. By the time I graduated, they were in the process of throwing out the beautiful language of the old Prayer book and getting into Social Justice. I was all for Social Justice (I arrived at Cal Berkeley for graduate school just in time for the Free Speech movement), but I wanted something more from religion.

As I was finishing my Master's degree in Comparative Literature I inadvertently started the Society for Creative Anachronism, and ended up making use of all the stuff I had learned about the Middle Ages. In the process, I met my husband, writer Jon DeCles, which eventually led to...

The household called Greyhaven, where I have lived since 1971. He also introduced me to paganism (he was Marion Zimmer Bradley's adopted brother). About the time we got out of the SCA I was getting into paganism and starting to write. In 1978 Marion and I started Darkmoon Circle, which hived off lots of things, including the Fellowship of the Spiral Path. In 1981 I published my first novel, at about the same time as my job writing educational materials for Far West Laboratory disappeared. Since then I have done some teaching at local colleges, but mostly have been writing fiction full time.

In 1987 I had an interesting encounter with Odin, that led me eventually to the Troth, for which I have done a variety of jobs, including my favorite, editing the journal, Idunna.

These days my main activities are writing the Avalon and Westria series and various non-fiction books, attending and running meetings (many, many meetings) of my kindred and related religious or study groups, oracle work, clergy training, speaking at conventions and festivals, etc.

I still live at Greyhaven, with my son, his wife, and my three grandchildren.
V-Gifts (2)