Fairy Tale Central has created a tag! It’s all about fairy tales, so of course I couldn’t be more excited to do it. The tag might as well have been tailor-made for me or something. I love it.
1. What’s an obscure fairy tale you love?
Noooo. There are too many obscure fairy tales I love for me to list them all here. But I love Kate Crackernuts, Tam Lin, Samba the Coward, Ivan and the Princess Blue-Eyes, The Wedding of Sir Gawain and Dame Ragnelle, Tatterhood, and…
I like a lot of fairy tales.
2. If you got to choose Disney’s next animated princess movie, what fairy tale would you choose to be adapted?
I remember talking to Weez a long time ago about how I wanted a Disney movie retelling Gawain and the Green Knight, featuring a very confused Gringolet. (Gringolet, in case you don’t know, is the horse.) And I still stand by that. It would be 2D animation, of course. And I’d want it to be faithful to the original story. Which essentially means that this is a pipe dream.
I also would like Disney movies for some more Greek myths, like Eros and Psyche or Perseus and Andromeda. (I’m pretty sure Andromeda was also black*, so…you know. Maybe Disney could finally have more than one black princess? Just saying?)
(Tiana is the only black princess, right? I don’t want to falsely criticize even Disney.)
*Okay, so I looked it up and it sounds like Greek writers would sometimes give Andromeda different ethnicities, but she’s usually described as being from Aethiopia and is sometimes described as black. Go for it, Disney.
Also, it would be nice to have some more movies retelling Arabian Nights tales. I just…I want. I want so bad.
Or they could make a movie about Gareth and Lynet!! Featuring sisters, enchantresses, and dumb knights galore! I want the Disney movie!
I would also love Disney to retell any Indian fairy tale, I’m not picky. It’s about time you finally set a movie in India, Disney.
Then again, maybe I should ask for a company that has more artistic integrity than Disney to do these. Disney is very good for what they are, but they don’t seem to like breaking very much new ground or doing anything a little different. That might scare off consumers! We can’t have that.
3. What is the first fairy tale you remember hearing when you were a child?
I have a memory of my mom telling me the story of Beauty and the Beast. It’s one of my favorite fairy tales, and I wonder if that’s why–it really may have been the first one I heard.
4. If you were to embark on a fairy tale quest, what necessities would you pack in your bag?
Food, of course. Also a magic comb, a handkerchief, and whatever else I need to get the witch off my tail. And, since I’m presuming I can take whatever I want, I would like a helpful talking raven who can give me advice on how to handle each magical situation. I would make a very good traveling companion! I, unlike stupid heroes, would try my hardest to not ignore every piece of advice I am given.
I would also bring a tent. I wouldn’t want to sleep in the rain.
5. What’s your favorite fairy tale trope?
I have a lot I like ( 😮 no one saw this answer coming!). I like witches who singlehandedly cause apocalypses. I like sisters who stand up for each other, especially when the fairy tale trope would ordinarily have them hating each other (Tatterhood! Kate Crackernuts! Fairy tale girls don’t always hate their sisters just because their sister conforms to the beauty standard and they don’t!). But most of all, I love clever, resourceful heroines. I love powerful women, and I love women who are content to stay in the background. I love villainous women who reach out and take the things they want, and I love women who keep their morality even when everyone around them treats them horribly.
Just. I love the women in these stories. You can find so many awesome heroines if you look for them.
6. If you could be any fairy tale character archetype (the princess, the soldier, fairy godmother, talking animal, mischievous imp, wise old woman, evil stepmother/sister, etc.), who would you want to be and why?
I guess I’d like to be a witch like Baba Yaga. Extremely morally ambiguous granny who knows how to have fun and who has a really cool house. I’d like that. She’s awesome. And yes, I’m aware that she’s a character rather than an archetype, but whatever. I want to be her.
7. What animal/mythical creature would be your sidekick for fairy tale adventures?
Well, I mentioned a helpful talking raven up there, so we’ll go with that. If not, though, I’d like to take one of my kitties.
8. What is your favorite historical era, and what fairy tale would you love to see in that setting?
Ahh! There are so many. Let’s make a list.
- Song Dynasty China. I tried setting a Beauty and the Beast story here, but unfortunately, I didn’t finish it. I wish I had.
- Joseon dynasty Korea! Goryeo Korea! Any Korea! I would honestly be fine with any fairy tale set here. Snow White? Beauty and the Beast? Rapunzel? I’ll take it. (Unfortunately, I haven’t read as much Korean folklore. I want to get into it more. Anyone have any fairy tale recs?)
- Safavid Persia. Or any Persia, actually. I would love to see some Arabian Nights retellings here, along with anything else. I really want some Arabian Nights retellings, though.
- I’m ashamed to admit I don’t know much about Morocco’s history, but Morocco has a BLUE. CITY. It also just seems like a really nice place for a setting. It sounds like such a beautiful place! I would like a Puss in Boots retelling set here.
- Medieval Europe (especially Ireland and Scotland, but also England or France or anywhere like that). Yes, I know what you’re thinking. This is already the most overused place for fantasy. But tell me this. How many people have presented medieval Europe in a compelling and/or accurate way? In my experience, not…not enough people. I kind of love dealing with older periods, both because of how different the cultures can be from the present day and also because it’s so interesting to me to have people accept magic as a rule of life. (Someone give me a Tam Lin retelling!)
- 18th and 19th century Britain (or France, or any other place in Europe, it doesn’t really matter). The clothes are so pretty! The social changes are so interesting to explore! You can discuss the early forms of feminism! (RESEARCH MANDATORY.) You can throw in your Jane Austen and your Pamela references! There’s just so much!
- Merie just discussed a version of Snow White set in Russia, and now I would LOVE to see a retelling.
9. If you could change a fairy tale’s villain into a hero, who would you choose and why?
Ooh. I like this question. I’m not sure Baba Yaga technically counts, since she’s more of an antihero anyway, but I love her and would enjoy seeing her as a protagonist very much. I’m currently writing a story with Mordred as the protagonist, and I’m enjoying that very much. (I have not written in this story in a while. I am an impostor. A fake writer.)
Also Clytemnestra! I find her really sympathetic, and I totally get wanting to kill Agamemnon. Anyone would want to kill Agamemnon. No one else had the guts to do it.
I just know there’s going to be a villain from a myth or fairy tale that I remember as soon as I’m done with this.
10. Do you prefer fairy tales with happy endings or sad/tragic endings? why or why not?
I like both. The ending should be right for the story. A tragic ending that fits the story is the most satisfying thing in the world. A tragic ending tacked on ‘just because’ feels pointless (@ HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSON). There are some stories that shouldn’t end happily. There are some stories that shouldn’t end tragically. So I guess you could say that I prefer satisfying endings.
I had so much fun with this tag! Absolutely feel free to join in if you want! There’s a linkup on Fairy Tale Central for this tag that runs until the end of February, if you want to add a post to it. I love talking about fairy tales so much. I’m sure you couldn’t tell.