The simple structure, clear elements, and unadorned style of fairy tales are something all writers can learn from. After all, fairy tales have passed the test of time. They engage readers (or listeners) exactly because their simplicity makes for dynamic (and dramatic!) stories. Regardless of what genre you write, here are the top five things writers can learn from reading fairy tales.
1. Craft a strong beginning
The classic ‘Once upon a time…’ story beginning immediately creates a connection with readers. It is familiar, while at the same time promising a new adventure. These are four magical words for kids, and for many adults. And that’s the point right there: the beginning of your story should be magical. A strong beginning should:
Convey a sense of atmosphere (giving a clue to the genre and style of your story)
Establish the setting
Source: 5 Things Writers Can Learn From Reading Fairy Tales – Writer’s Edit
From Amazon.com’s description: “In the second volume of our Grimm and Grimmer series of retold fairy tales, we present six new or established writers who bring together a collection of tasty treats.
Reading the original tales, you realise how many of those tales were simple lessons about behaviour and survival. Some were lessons we could still agree with; be kind to those who seem poor and dirty and powerless. Behave pleasantly to those around you. Keep your eyes open. Note what happens to others who have gone on this quest before you. Be brave. Be crafty.
In this anthology our six tales present alternate versions of these lessons. In Matthew Sylvester’s Death’s Messengers, a futuristic soldier makes a choice that extends his life. In Ed Ahern’s Happily Ever After, the stereotypes of Prince and Princess are subverted, just as ‘One Hundred Lost Years’ by Jennifer Loring teaches us not to judge a book by its cover. In Ready or Not by Nancy Brashear, we see a dark version of Hansel and Gretel, whilst Paved with Gold by Ed Fortune, shows us that all that glitters is not gold. And in Stewart Hotston’s Rumpeltrollskin, the lesson is . . beware a fool’s bargain. So step in and enjoy these brand new twisted fairy tales.”
The paperback version will be out soon, but you can grab the Kindle edition now for only $2.99!