1. When you think about fairy tales, what is the earliest memory that you have?
Anytime I think of fairy tales, the story of Sleeping Beauty pops into my head. My earliest memory of a fairy tale is probably of watching the Sleeping Beauty movie from Disney. To this day, it is still one of my favourite fairy tales.
2. What is your favourite 'classic' fairy tale? Why?
Sleeping Beauty, though I'm hard pressed to say why. Most classic fairy tales are pretty grim in nature, but there's still something about the idea that you could sleep for 100 years, be awakened by true loves kiss, still have all the castle staff you knew alive, and get married and have two children that appeals to me. Even though some of the story is a little questionable, the Sleeping Beauty and her prince do live happily ever after.
3. As a female, did the sometimes sexist nature of fairy tales bother you, or did you just read the story for the fun factor and not pay a lot of attention to that issue?
I definitely did not pay any attention to the sexist nature of fairy tales. By the time I was old enough to really notice it, I'd already enjoyed the stories for so long it doesn't bug me. Also, I think because I'm a history major, I'm able to keep the time period they come from in mind - back when most classic fairy tales first appeared, they wouldn't really have been seen as "sexist".
4. What is it that draws you to fairy tales in the first place? A connection with childhood, or is it something entirely different?
You know, I really don't know. I'd have to say that it's most likely a connection to my childhood - especially the Disney versions of fairy tales. I would say that it's the idea that the girl gets to live happily ever after with her prince, but like I said before, a lot of fairy tales were pretty sad. Take The Little Mermaid for example - in the original, she did not get her prince and in fact died in the end. I have fond memories of Disney version fairy tales from when I was younger, and even studying them in University I was intrigued by how simplistic yet involved they were.
5. What is your favourite fairy tale to have retold, so you are always looking for different versions?
I have two, actually. Sleeping Beauty, of course; my favourite retelling so far is Enchantment by Orson Scott Card. Second is Cinderella. My favourite book retelling is Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine, and I love the movie Ever After with Drew Barrymore. There's just so much that an author can do with those two fairy tales, each retelling is always very unique.
6. Who is your fairy tale author? It can be either classic or modern or both.
My favourite classic fairy tale author is probably Charles Perrault, who gave us Sleeping Beauty, Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, and Puss in Boots, followed by the Brothers Grimm, who gave us The Frog Prince, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Snow White, Rumpelstiltskin, and retellings of Sleeping Beauty, Little Red Riding Hood and Cinderella.
7. What fairy tales have you read this year? Anything that comes to mind that you think everyone should read?
I actually haven't read any fairy tales yet this year. I have Ash by Malinda Lo, Beauty by Robin McKinley, Spindles End by Robin McKinley and Beastly by Alex Flinn on my TBR list, and I'm reading Ash and Spindles End for Fairy Tale Week.
8. If you could just pick just one, what is your favourite fairy tale retold novel of all time? Why?
Enchantment by Orson Scott Card, because it's not so much a retelling, as a...continuation, I suppose? The main character, Ivan, stumbles across a sleeping princess in a forest. Years later, he can't forget about her and returns to where she was sleeping. Waking her with a kiss, Ivan gets pulled into a world he could only imagine. The novel basically starts before Sleeping Beauty was ever awakened in the original fairy tale. It's a really neat story, I think everyone should read it.
9. What lead you to participate in Fairy Tale Week?
As soon as Vanessa of Today's Adventure threw out that first hesitant query about maybe starting a Fairy Tale Week, I knew I wanted to participate. I just like the idea of fairy tales, either the originals, the retellings, or new ones - dedicating a week to them sounded like a great idea to me!
10. Anything that you want to add?
I think you pretty much covered everything. Thank you very much for the interview, I had fun answering the questions! And thank you to Vanessa for starting up such a fun week.