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!
What happened to the “Official Announcement” that was supposed to happen yesterday? Is it somewhere else on this site instead of in the blog section?
I needed to stop by and just say how much I am loving your Timeless Fairy Tale series. I just finished reading The Little Selkie and absolutely loved it. So far Dylan has been my favorite princess/heroine and Callan is probably my favorite hero. I loved that they both had such flaws but somehow their flaws also made them very strong. I’m about to start reading Puss in Boots and I’m super excited.
I know you probably have so many ideas for future stories in the series (and I think I read somewhere that you have another fairy tale series separate from the Timeless Fairy Tales series that you’re working on) but I so hope someday you’ll do a retelling of East of the Sun and West of the Moon, the Twelve Dancing Princesses, or The Frog Prince. They’re some of my favorite fairytales right along with The Wild Swans, Sleeping Beauty, and The Goose Girl. I would so love to see your take on one of those fairytales.
I truly feel like you bring a new take to these fairytales while staying true to them as well. You’ve created such strong characters and I love it!
Thank you for writing such wonderful stories!
Kenzie R. says
I love East of the Sun and West of the Moon! Tho, I read Sun Moon Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George, and I liked that one better.
I have so enjoyed your Fairy Tale series and how they are connected. I am in the middle of Swan Lake and look forward to Sleeping Beauty!!
Keep writing and I’ll keep reading!!
Good luck with your hermit hole!