Showing posts with label fairytale. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fairytale. Show all posts

Thursday, November 6

Reimagining Fairytales

Reimagining Fairytales

I’ve always been in love with the idea of re-imagining one of the fairytales I adored as a child, telling it again in a way that preserved what made me love it in the first place but bringing it into the present day. I think that might be why I took to urban fantasy like a fish to water.

Various Ways To Transform A Story

I mentioned, above, bringing a fairytale into the present—that is, changing the setting—but there are other ways to transform a story. A writing site I discovered recently ( published a terrific article: 6 Tips for Re-Imagining a Classic Story. What follows was inspired by that article.

Make a list of tropes used in the story.

If you’re not sure what tropes were used, or you’re not completely sure what a trope is, is your friend. It has every trope in existence and helpful souls have already broken many tales, both modern and classical, into their constituent tropes. (See, for example, their analysis of the tropes in Snow White—if you’re looking for the Disney version, go here.)

Now play with the story by adding new tropes or by removing existing ones.

Change one of the key elements of the story.

I’ve already mentioned changing the setting and reimagining the story in the modern era, but one could also change the plot. For example, we could re-visit the story of Little Red Riding Hood but at some time before or after her encounter with the wolf.

Or—something which would be all kinds of fun and so, as one would expect, has been done quite a bit—we could re-imagine the plot and, say, change the ending.

Another option still is to tinker with the characters themselves and make, for instance, Little Red the villain of the piece.

Examples of successful re-imaginings. 

You’re likely familiar with one amazingly successful attempt to reimagine a classic tale: BBC’s version of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories (Sherlock). But there are many other shows in this vein, Sleepy Hollow for instance. There are others, many others, but these two I love and look forward to new episodes with an almost religious fervor.

By the way, I took a peek at a review of “Dust City” by Robert Paul Weston and came across this line: “When your dad is the wolf who killed Little Red Riding Hood, life is no fairytale.” That line makes me want to read the book.

Have you ever re-imagined a classic tale? How’d it go? If you’d like to share your experience, or if you have any tips to share, please leave a comment.

Photo credit: "Where's William Shatner? Star Wars VI" by JD Hancock under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.

Saturday, January 22

The Sandman: A Maria Ordin Adventure

I just published my first book! I shouldn't say that I've published a book since The Sandman comes to only 4,000 words or so. Oh, and IT'S FREE!

Here's my description:

Seven year old Maria and her parents go on a once-in-a-lifetime dream vacation. They have reservations at the best and most expensive resort in the world, the Dolphin Club. Little Maria looks forward to tanning on the warm white sand of the beach and swimming in crystal clear waters of the lake. Then something terrible happens, someone takes away all the sand from the beautiful beach and leaves behind nothing but mud and rock. Will Maria be able to discover the culprit and get the sand back before the Ordin's vacation is ruined?

When I was a little girl my father used to tell me a story every night before I went to sleep. Sometimes he would tell me about his life as a boy growing up in Russia, or about his little red hen who knew how to count, or about his two huge wolfhounds and how they caught rabbits. Other times he would make up stories for me, stories like The Sandman or How the Lion Got to be King. I loved all of his stories and asked him to tell me them over and over again.
A few weeks ago I asked my dad to tell me his stories one more time so I could write them down, but as I wrote a funny thing happened: the stories became longer and new characters sprang to life.
Although I have been careful to keep the main points of The Sandman exactly as my dad told it, I have taken a few liberties with the story, adding things here and there.
For the last few years it has been my passion to take tales I loved as a child and to retell them in contemporary settings and, where possible, include female heroes while preserving the original magic of the story. I'm not going to speculate on whether or to what degree I have succeeded, but if these stories are used to entertain a child before they close their eyes and drift off into the land of sleep then my efforts have been well spent.

You can find the book on:
- Smashwords
- It will soon be up on Amazon and Barnes and Nobel.