Greetings, Champions! I’m finishing up my Sleeping Beauty themed posts today with this final entry. (As a reminder, all the Sleeping Beauty extras are now available–you can snag them in the extras section!)
I took quite a few liberties with my version of Sleeping Beauty, and I will be the first to admit it was mostly to make things more logical, and also out of spite. For example, I didn’t want to make the king proclaim that all spinning wheels must be destroyed–my characters live in a world that is far too logical to submit to that nonsense. So I ended up shipping Briar Rose off to the countryside–which suited me perfectly as I wanted to explore the dynamics of her being raised apart from her family.
Isaia’s role as a magic knight instead of a prince is my petty bit of spite. While I love fairy tales I do get sick of writing mostly about princes or princesses–Rumpelstiltskin has been my only reprieve thus far. In reading the many different versions of sleeping beauty I ended up developing a serious antipathy towards the prince who awakens the princess. As you may recall, he is nothing like Disney’s Prince Phillip who battles for Aurora, and instead he waltzes into the castle and manages to awaken the princess solely because the required 100 years had passed. Not. A. Fan.
Keeping that in mind, I knew I wanted Briar’s romantic relationship to be different from my previous gals, and using a childhood friend she had known for a long time was a great way to introduce a new dynamic! (It doesn’t hurt that I am a huge sucker for stories where the princess falls for her guard!) The change in the relationship compared to the typical boy-meets-girl-and-falls-in-love made Sleeping Beauty really fun to write as I got to bring out a different level of emotions and complexities between them.
I used the true love’s kiss to break Briar’s curse, because the Brothers Grimm’s Little Briar Rose has the prince kiss the sleeping princess awake, and I was taking a few more cues from it than Perrault’s french fairy tale. (Also I wanted to begin needling poor Angelique at a young age. The next time she has to modify a curse with true love’s kiss, she just may crack!)
In honor of what is considered the “original” sleeping beauty, Sun, Moon, and Talia–which was written by an Italian poet–Sole culture is loosely based on Rennisance Italian culture. (You can see it in the fashion with the veils over the hair and the puffed gown sleeves, the food, the names, and the excessive use of marble/stone and wall frescos.) However, like all the other countries its government has its quirks. While Erlauf has its armies and Arcainia its blue-stocking royals, Sole is known for its magic knights. The country values things like honor, justice, and chivalry, but you can also see it in the decor. (I sprinkled knight/weapon/horse themed statues, tapestries, frescos, etc, everywhere!)
It was fun because I got to tackle a bit more of the world building in Sole than I did with Kozlovka in Swan Lake–but that’s because Swan Lake mostly takes place in the middle of a forest.
And thus ends our Sleeping Beauty lessons! On Monday I’m going to post an official announcement, but starting next week I’ll be going falling off the face of the planet so I can buckle down on King Arthurs. I won’t reply to comments and messages during that time, because I’ll be tucked away in a hermit hole that gets poor internet. Wish me luck! And on that note, Champions, I hope you have a lovely weekend!