Grimm Guest…Bettie Sharpe…

You’ll have to give me a second…I must give a fan girl squeal here.  (If you haven’t read Bettie’s Ember, you are so desperately missing out).

Ahem.  Okay.  Carry on.  Today’s Grimm guest…Bettie Sharpe.

A Few Unanswered Questions

What’s so fun about retelling fairy tales? Everything! Fairy tales are the forbearers of fan fiction—they’re familiar and accessible; they’re part of the cultural imagination and the public domain. They began as folk tales passed from person to person, embellished and altered by generations of imaginations, and they are best when they’re retold. Retelling keeps fairy tales fresh, fierce and alive.

Fairy tales appeal to readers for different reasons. Some people appreciate stories in which good is rewarded and evil is punished. Some people like stories about clever underdogs who triumph against unlikely odds. But most people, I’m betting, are in it for the Happily Ever After.

Personally, I love a Happily Ever After as much as the next girl, but the reason I love to write retellings of fairy tales has nothing to do with the endings, and everything to do with the questions that crop up along the way. Why was the prince in Cinderella called Charming and what was so special about him? What was the cat’s story in Puss in Boots, and why was it so obsessed with shoes? What the hell was the Little Mermaid thinking when she agreed to give up her voice and suffer every step just to be near a man who was engaged to someone else?

Those are the questions that got me started writing my novella Ember (a retelling of Cinderella), my novella Cat’s Tale (a retelling of Puss in Boots) and my short story “Each Step Sublime” (a retelling of The Little Mermaid). The great thing about fairy tales is that when you set out to answer your questions about them, a whole new story is born.

What are some questions you’ve always had about fairy tales? Leave your answer in a comment for a chance to win a copy of my ebook novella, Cat’s Tale: A Fairy Tale Retold.

To enter, just leave a comment below.  

Remember, all comments left during the daily Grimm Giveaway are entered for the big giveaway…info here.  Make sure you’ve read my disclaimer-all winners will be posted to my blog and that’s your notification.  If you don’t check back…you don’t know if you’ve won.  More info on the Grimm giveaway link.

Dying is hard enough… coming back to life is brutal.

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19 Replies to “Grimm Guest…Bettie Sharpe…”

  1. i always wondered why the good fairies did not just kick Milificients butt in Sleeping Beauty, was she that poweful or was there some other reason.
    it is my favorite fairytale.

  2. I must read Cat’s Tale as Puss N Boots was my favorite tale as a kid. I’ve often wondered how we turned the tales around. As I recall the originals are pretty brutal, not really kid material unless you’re trying to teach some very harsh lesson.

  3. would love to read this one. I’ve loved the puss in boots story since I had to look it up after watching Shrek with my kiddos.

  4. i havent read this…yet. ive been looking forward to. i really enjoy books that retell fairy tales. 🙂 thanks for sharing! im going to have to go get this.

  5. Love retelling of fairy tales also and there have been some great and interesting takes on them. I have not read Bettie’s but I am going to go check them out!

    gigi s


  6. I’ve always wondered what happened to the Seven Dwarfs after Snow White rode off into the sunset, as it were. No one has ever been able to enlighten me on this point.



  7. I love reading the retelling of fairy tales because you get to have the details of the tale. I wonder if Alice ever went back to wonderland? I also wonder If Rapunzel ever grew back her hair?
    Thanks for the contest.
    reneebennett35 at yahoo dot com

  8. I can’t say I’ve had any burning unanswered questions about fairy tales. I’ve been a fan my whole life and I’ve read a bunch of different versions-from the darker original versions to the watered-down Disney versions. I think my main question is why some of the more obscure tales aren’t more popular or brought into modern times? There is heroism and romance in Hans the Hedgehog and in Snow-White and Rose-Red. There are a wealth of stories to choose from but the most common-Snow White, Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Beauty & The Beast, etc. are used over and over. I’m still a fan, but I think it would be cool to see a modernization of a wider variety of tales.

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com

  9. Well, I am going to show my…what’s the right word…head up butt?! problems. I never understood that fairy tales are called fairy tales because of fairies! Like I said, head up butt! So, why is it that American children are inundated with these watered down fairy tales? Now that I have started reading some of the original versions of the story I am amazed by what is missing from the modern versions!

  10. Cat’s Tale sounds like a story I want to read. Puss n Boots is a great choice for a remake of a great fairy tale
    hockeyvampiress at hotmail dot com

  11. Plenty of thought-provoking questions. Lynn, now that you’ve brought up the question, I think I will always wonder what happened to the dwarves after Snow White’s HEA…

    Jen B. I think I can actually answer your question. The name “fairy tales” arose from the French tradition. In the 17th century, it was fashionable for educated, moneyed people to write fairy tales. The most famous set of tales from this time was Charles Perrault’s Histoires ou Contes du Temps passé: Les Contes de ma Mère l’Oie (Tales of Times Past: The Stories of my Mother Goose). While Mother Goose is synonymous with fairy tales, the genre takes its name from the work of Perrault’s contemporary, Marie-Catherine Le Jumel de Barneville, Baroness d’Aulnoy, which she called Les Contes des Fées or, fairy tales.

    I agree with ML that there are some great lesser-known fairy tales out there. If you haven’t read any of Madame d’Aulnoy’s Contes des Fées, give them a try! I’m so fond of d’Aulnoy’s stories that I’m using one as the basis for my next fairy tale retelling.

  12. Why is there always a “Bad Guy”? They fairy tales I know are only from watching the Disney movies, so I admit to a lack of knowledge. Is there a fairy tale without a bad guy/girl? I have boys that are more interested in Batman and Thomas the Train so I haven’t really looked into original fairy tales… Seems like I should at least see what everyone is talking about lol

  13. I agree with ML, it’s past time for authors & movie makers to branch out beyond the few fairy tales that have gotten the Hollywood/Disney treatment so many times over. What is your favorite of the passed over fairy tales?

  14. I don’t think I ever wondered about the motivations of any certain character instead I wondered why different cultures sometimes had extremely similar fairy tale themes like Cinderella for example.

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