Fairytales

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Fairytales
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"A world in which there are monsters, and ghosts, and things that want to steal your heart is a world in which there are angels, and dreams, and a world in which there is hope."  -Neil Gaiman

A group for writers of contemporary fairytales

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

I'm currently working on my query package for my first novel, Skin Shedders, and was wondering if anyone could give me advice. It is a YA fantasy of 85,000 words. I also want to know if it sounds like a book anyone would want to read (and if you would like it).

Dear agent, 

I’m seeking representation for my first novel, Skin Shedders, a YA fantasy of 85,000 words, inspired by Brandon Mull’s Spirit Animals and Taran Matharu’s Summoner series. 

The book opens in a small village, in the war-torn kingdom of Verius. It follows Drake, an orphan whose parents had been murdered when he was a toddler. He goes through the Skin Shedding Ceremony, and as his new position of nobility progresses, he is increasingly wrapped up in the dealings of Yiron, the noble who owned the estate before Drake. Yiron is intricately tied up with Drake’s past, and the secrets to who murdered his parents.

As the book progresses it hints at mysteries—mysteries about the past that Drake has become embroiled in. Why are assassins being sent after him? What’s the voice he hears?

I am fourteen and have wanted to write a book for some time. I look forward to writing more books in the series.

I enclose my three opening chapters and a synopsis. I am looking forward to hearing from you.


DRAKE (16) is an orphan living in Verius, a kingdom that’s been at war for thousands of years. His parents were murdered when he was a child, and Drake wants to find the man who killed them. Drake has a mysterious disease that has been slowly progressing, the medicine he stole not helping.

The disease is caused by the Skin Shedding Ceremony not being performed, and the absence of the Ceremony. Once the Ceremony is performed, Drake’s disease will disappear.

He is caught trying to steal bread, then subsequently thrown in jail. Drake knows that no one will find him, and he will stay in jail until he is killed by the disease. After a few days, a noble finds Drake in the cell, freeing him.

The noble knows of the disease Drake has and sends him with the other sixteen-year-old children in the village. They are going to have the Skin Shedding Ceremony performed, enabling the children to Skin Shed, a form of shapeshifting.

Drake’s disease progresses, so he is taken to the capital city of Farith to have the Ceremony performed before he dies. The Ceremony is performed, but when they try to reverse it, it goes wrong, and Drake runs away. Drake finds a Dar, a messenger for the king of Dirikan. He accidently kills the Dar, Skin Shedding into a giant boar in the process, which shouldn’t be possible.

Drake is found by CALLUM, next in line for the throne. Drake and Callum are brought to Farith by one of the King’s spies. Drake overhears the spy and one of the High Court conversing about Callum and him.

Drake is sent to his estate, an estate previously owned by YIRON, the noble that murdered Drake’s parents, and disappeared years ago. Drake accidentally finds a room hidden by Yiron, and slowly discovers more about what he was doing.

Drake is conscripted into the Verin army, as well as Callum. During a battle, Drake Skin Sheds into a boar again. Callum hides the evidence. They are ambushed by Dirikanians, and Drake shows the King’s spies what he can do.

Drake shows Callum the hidden room, and they discover that they need to go to Dirikan, the kingdom that they are at war with. While Drake stays in Farith, they are attacked by the Sun’s Shadows, a religious group of assassins sent by the King. Drake and Callum escape, Callum Skin Shedding into a giant harpy eagle.

They reach Dirikan after being attacked once again, trying to find out how to gain the files they need. Drake is pickpocketed by ARLEN, a Dirikanian. King Serden finds out that they are in Dirikan, and they are caught, but not before Drake finds out Callum is Dirikanian.

With the help of Arlen, they escape Dirikan with the files they need.

A couple weeks later, Callum brings the news that the King has cut off labor to his estate. It forces Drake to go to the proving grounds.

In the proving grounds, Drake kills General Dorasthen, knocked unconscious in the process. He has a vision of Yiron, showing Drake what he needs.

The King sends the Sun’s Shadows against Drake again, flooding his estate. They are beat back, but Drake and Arlen are forced to leave before Drake is given to the Sun’s Shadows. As they escape, Callum joining them, they are attacked again, the Sun’s Shadows capturing Callum. 

Does it sound engaging? And, once again, would you like to read it?

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Hello all!

I have been trying to query my YA Fantasy folktale-inspired horror/thriller novel with little success, so am looking over my query package and thinking how I could make it better. Would anyone here be willing to look over my cover letter, synopsis and first 3 chapters and let me know their thoughts? I'm thick-skinned, so would appreciate it if you can tell me where you get bored/confused etc.

I would post the whole here but obviously that's quite a lot, so if you're interested, can you comment/ message me your email?

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

I've just posted the first two chapters (c3000 words) of a fantasy novel on Peer-to-Peer critiques. It draws heavily on English and Welsh folk traditions, including The Mabinogion, and features giants, fairies, witches, goblins and elves in the modern world. I'd love to hear what other writers in this genre make of it.

Thanks, Glyn

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

Hi Veronika and everyone.

I am new to this Group. Having written historical and contemporary fiction for adult readers, I was inspired to take a course and write a middle-grade fantasy book in 2020 -  my lock-down project.  I am interested in entering the WRITEMENTOR children's novel competition by the closing date, 31st January.  As I have never written a synopsis for a children's book before, I wonder if anyone has the time to read it and give me feedback, please. 

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Fractured Literary Submission Manager - Fractured Lit Ghost, Fable, and Fairy Tales Prize |$3000| Judged by Kevin Brockmeier (submittable.com)

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New Anthology looking for submissions of fairy tales on the theme of fairy godmothers (deadline November 15th)

https://www.worldweaverpress.com/submit-anthologies.html

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This short story anthology call has a fairytaleish vibe. I like the sound of it, but inspiration is elusive. Hopefully it will inspire someone. http://darkdragonpublishing.com/anthosub.html

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Prompted by some quirk of fate, I recently wrote a retelling of a well known fairytale in poetic form.

Being neither poetess, nor 'fairytale-reteller,' this came as a surprise. 

I like that it's short enough to share in this group. Any comments welcome.

                                

THE SECRET TRUTH

(Memoirs of a Fairytale Princess)  

I was born in a Palace,
a dream come true,
for my parents and fairy godmother.
From thereon, however, things went downhill.
Mama got sick, a difficult birth,
and Papa, with his power, wealth and all that,
would have given his crown, I was told.

Couldn’t save her though.
My mother died, I was nursed
by a maid, wish I knew her name.
Then the Queen took over,
became my new mum, can’t tell exactly when.
Didn’t see her much,
and anyway, she’s all I’ve ever known.

My childhood passed in a gloomy fog,
no photos, no tales, no baby locks,
no keep sakes of my dear mother.
My earliest memory,
I may have been ten,
the forbidden room was open,
I walked in, as you do, looked in the mirror, and…

Had no idea it was magic.
What I saw that day?
I so wish I could remember!
The hunter found me in the woods,
they say, the Queen’s secret lover,
how I got there, nobody told me that bit,
but I swear by the nymphs of the forest.

He wanted to kill me.
I cried, and I begged,
till he took me back to the Palace.
Life wasn’t a fairytale after that,
the Queen jealous as hell.
She talked to the mirror from dawn to dusk,
obsessed with age, rank, and beauty.

In the end I ran away, as you know
from home to the hilly yonder
stayed with little fellows, seven of them,
cleaning caves, cooking food – not my dream.
So when that old witch came along and brought
stuff I couldn’t avoid or resist, I ignored
advice, counsel, and warnings.

Took the belt, the comb, and the apple from her
all poisoned, in hindsight it’s clear.
Got it wrong each time, I admit without shame,
failed again, again, and again.
But my prince found me anyway.
And that’s all I wanted to say:
Defeat, my friends, wasn’t my story’s end,
and the mirror – it just came back to me – knew the secret truth all along.  

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This open call might be of interest to you fairytale lovers. Particularly the Wild Hunt theme for JPK and your Harry Ca Nab stories. http://aanpress.com/submissions.html 

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

Hi everyone

I'm new to the group. I have two WIPs: 'Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Sailor', and (surprise, surprise) 'Richman Poorman Beggarman Thief'. All the stories are written. I will complete the final revision of the first book either this weekend or early next week. I plan to publish it independently as short stories are difficult to place.

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

Hello dear Fellow Fairytale Writers,

And welcome especially to all new members! Lovely to see this group grow.
I got to admit, I haven't posted much since founding this group, for many valid or silly reasons, which I won't bore you with. But now I finally have something worthwhile to share. Here we go:

I recently joined a course at WriteMentor where we post pieces of our WIP, and everyone who's signed up can give feedback to everyone else. We have different 'official' topics each month, however, we don't have to strictly stick to them.

Some examples of what we post are: 1– The concept of your story, 2 – The opening line or paragraph, 3 – A Synopsis, 4 – The first scene or chapter (preferably no more than 1000 words)

This is proving to be extremely valuable, and I feel my work is moving on in leaps and bounds as a result of this exchange.

That gave me the idea of creating a similar forum here – just for writers of fairy tales, but not necessarily only for children.

Let me know what you think, and if you have additional suggestions for topics on which you would like peer feedback, please add them to the list.

Added a post  to  , Fairytales

Hey all! Thanks for letting me into the group! I have a deep love of folktale and fairytale, write my own YA Fantasy based on it and have been reading it for a loooong time. From Grimm to Holly Black, I love anything that involves the murderous fey and folkloric tradition.
I also read academic texts on it - Currently reading Katherine Brigg's 'The Fairies in Tradition and Literature' and will be moving on to Jack Zipes' 'Fairy Tales and the Art of Subversion' soon. Also avid subscriber to 'Gramarye: The Journal of the Chichester Centre for Fairy Tales, Fantasy and Speculative Fiction' and have recently found that loads of Fairy Tale Review is now free to access on JSTOR.

And not to promote anywhere else when we all love Jericho, but just wondering if anyone here has signed up for Zoe Gilbert and LondonLitLab's 'Folk Tales in New Fiction' course in a few weeks' time?

Anyway, all this is to say that I would love, and do love, talking about folklore, fantasy fiction and fairy tale.:)