Saturday, November 5, 2011

Once Upon a Time....

"Once upon a time" -- these four words are words we've all heard and read thousands and thousands of times. We've come to know little girls who get eaten by wolves, a stepsister who loses a glass slipper, and a mermaid who trades her voice for a chance at human love. Growing up, my favorite was "The Little Mermaid" because A) I was obsessed with marine animals (dolphin power!) and B) I really liked the love story. It may not give the greatest message to girls, but the mermaid's struggle is tragically beautiful.

As I'm sure many of you have noticed, fairy tales are making a comback. Then again, they've never really gone away, have they? There's an innocence to these stories that speak to us as children and even more so as teens and adults. Sure, they're fantastical, but there's always something we can identify with. And I think it's this universal-ness that has made them so timeless and popular

What fairy tale is your favorite? What do you think of all the recent adaptations/interpretations? I'm really loving ABC's "Once Upon a Time" and Jackson Pearce's retellings. Are any of you writing retellings? If so, have you faced any problems in making a tale your own?


  1. I love fairy tales, and I'm excited with all the TV shows and movies coming out about them! I'm loving ONCE UPON A TIME and still need to get into GRIMM. My favorite fairy tale has to be either "The Little Mermaid" or "The Little Match Girl", both by Hans Christian Andersen. Those stories make me feel sad and emotional. I just want to cry!

    Right now, I'm working on a "Beauty and the Beast" retelling but set in a dystopian world. It's fun trying to incorporate fairy tale elements (easter eggs in a way) into my writing :). The only problem I currently have with this WIP is info-dumping. I need to ease up!

  2. My favorite is the Little Mermaid, although I love Flynn in Tangled. But I just loved how Ariel went for her freedom. That's what these stories are, tales of finding our own little slice of freedom.

    Plus, gingers rock :)

    My favorite retelling so far is Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon. More politics and description of the sea.

  3. I LOVE Beauty and the Beast!!! I haven't come across any retellings, so if someone can recommend one I'd appreciate it. :)
    I've never tried to write one myself.

  4. @Wendy, Robin McKinley wrote not one, but TWO retellings of B&B.

  5. As a former professional storyteller, fairy and folk tales will always have a special hold on me. Each person seems to take something different away from the same story.

    Donna Jo Napoli has some great retellings of fairy tales (my favorite is The Wager) but one retelling of the East of the Sun, West of the Moon tale really stands out for me. It's Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George. George also has some well-told books on the 12 Dancing Princesses story.

  6. I love fairy tales. Especially the really dark, twisted Russian ones. There's a great anthology out there called Rapunzel's Daughter that is full of the stories about what happened after the happily ever after.

  7. Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid.


    I have a retelling I'd like to write, but honestly, I'm scared I can't pull it off. LOL. It will be a bit in the future before I give it a go.