Archive for the ‘folk tales’ Tag

The Moronic Ox   2 comments

WPA poster by Kenneth Whitley, 1939.

Image via Wikipedia

http://moronicox.com/peterson.html

Seriously, could there be a better name for a literary journal than Moronic Ox? When I first heard about them, I knew a group of editors with such a funny and clever name would appreciate my writing. And I was right! How about that?

A few days ago I wrote about my love for fold and fairy tales on the Velvet Chamber post. There I deconstructed a princess. In the story on the Moronic Ox entitled A Little Red, I turn that sweet little girl on her way to grandma’s house into a feminist and a carnivore.

Of course, I’m not the first person to think of Little Red in this way. In her book, Little Red Riding Hood Uncloaked, Sex, Morality, and the Evolution of a Fairy Tale, Catherine Orenstein explores the history of the story, how it was initially written to warn young women about the “wolves” lurking around in the palaces of Europe, and how it has evolved, (or some would say, devolved), into porn, comedy, cartoons, popular music, and slang.

And so, after reading this book, it was only a matter of time before I took the matter into my own hands and twisted the tale. In my story, there is no kindly woodcutter, just a smart girl picking her teeth, a wolfish grin on her face and a message in blood written across the wall.

I really like playing around with old stories. Soon I will begin work on a Goldilocks tale, keeping the old thief and losing the little girl. Someday perhaps I’ll have enough of these to collect into a book. Someday perhaps I will be able to find a publisher willing to produce that book.

What about you? Is there an old story that you love enough to rewrite, making it your own? Try it sometime, old characters you thought you knew will become interesting, and sometimes dangerous, strangers.

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