Taking a better look at your original question, one thing that might help: Ignore the names, at least for now.
Now I don't mean that you shouldn't use the original Norse names in the final story if you so choose. That's ultimately your own decision. What I am saying, though, is that you should focus less on the superficial trappings of the stories that inspire you — the names, the specific scenes, etc. — and more on the deeper themes, motivations, and meanings that run as a common thread through them.
To give a few examples:
How, in general, did the heroes of these stories view the gods, and how did the gods view the heroes? How did they view the world around them and their place in it? What sort of actions and attitudes are portrayed as virtuous or vilifying? Who or what are the heroes obligated to, and how do they fulfill those obligations (or if they didn't, how were they expected to)? How do people live, and how do they die — and does this affect their judgment in the afterlife? Can a hero change his fate, or is he doomed to follow the path marked out for him? If he's given the opportunity to try
to change his fate, should he? If not, what is the proper way to face it with dignity?
Once you find the answers, use them as the spindle around which to weave the details of your tale. While keeping those themes in mind, strive to give the story your own voice. That's
when you start concentrating on the external trappings and on how the details of the plot fit together.
It's probably not going to be an easy task to work all this out on your own. Fortunately, in a sense, a lot of the work is done already, since early Norse mythology and literature is only a little less popular than its Classical Greek and Roman counterparts in literary and scholarly circles.
To reiterate my point in another fashion: The best way to ensure your own work doesn't sound hollow is to take apart the originals and figure out what's hidden within them.
edited 9th Mar '13 8:43:54 PM by Specialist290