Sunday, February 19, 2012

Fractured Fairytales

Here are some more of my notes from LTUE (Life the Universe and Everything scifi/fantasy symposium). The presenters for this panel included:

Author Mette Harrison
Author Rick Walton
Danyelle Leafty
Author Danyelle Leafty

What is a fractured fairytale?
  • Using a fairy tale as inspiration (a spin off)
  • A modern adaptation
  • A silly adaptation with very little to do with the original except on the surface
  • For example: West Side Story=Romeo and Juliet
  • Another example: from the stepmother’s POV
  • A fractured story with elements of more than one fairy tale
Reasons for doing retellings:
  • Using the established expectations you can twist people’s minds and create humor
  • Hating fairytales gives one panelist the desire to retell them.
  • They mirror truth and give you a conveyed theme. You can take your own twist of that version of truth.
  • Original fairytales try to teach moral lessons with shock value. You can choose tales as starting point because of the horror element and start with the horribleness.
  • They feel real even if they’re not. The characters stories feel well-rounded.
  • Fairytales are part of the cultural consciousness and bring us immediate connectedness. They give us a common culture, a shared literacy.
  • They show a mirror of humanity—some of the darker and lighter aspects.
Does a story need a moral?
  • A story needs meaning and problems.
  • There’s a difference between having a moral and moralizing (preaching).


  1. I love retellings. It's fun to see how authors put new spins on well-known tales.

    1. I love retellings too and have written a couple.

  2. Interesting! Thanks for the notes.

  3. Excellent post - great inspiration to give a fairytale a whirl!

  4. Nice review. I wasn't able to attend that class, though I've thought about doing a fairy tale retelling.