Fairy Tales Gone Darkly!

Fairy tales…

Good ones?

Are suppose to be dark.

And because they are…

[via howstuffworks] 10 Fairy Tales That Were Way Darker Than You Realized as a Kid

If you grew up watching classic Disney movies such as “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” and “Cinderella,” or reading the Little Golden Book version of “Pinocchio,” you’re probably accustomed to thinking of fairy tales as wholesome entertainment for young children.

That’s why it may come as a shock to watch “Snow White” again as an adult and realize that it’s a bit macabre. For example, when the jealous queen orders the huntsman to kill Snow White, she demands that he bring back the girl’s heart in a jewel box as evidence of his violent deed. And that’s just the relatively sanitized, Disney-fied version. In the early 19th-century version published by the German brothers Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm, the queen wants to devour Snow White’s lungs and liver .

The original versions of most of these fantasy stories are filled with plot twists that belong in a modern slasher film. In part, that’s because fairy tales didn’t start out as children’s stories, but rather as tawdry folktales that grownups told for entertainment after the kids went to bed.

When the Grimms published their first edition of “Nursery and Household Tales” in two volumes in 1812 and 1815, they aimed it at adults [sources: New Yorker, Meslow]. Only after disappointing sales did they decide to tone down the material and make it suitable for kids. The tales mostly came from friends and relatives, which the brothers significantly revised. Many were variations of French fairy tales already written by people like Charles Perrault.

But even after the authors sanitized them, they didn’t totally eliminate the scary stuff. That’s because fairy tales were intended not just to entertain children, but also to educate them about the consequences of evil deeds . Psychologist Bruno Bettelheim, for one, argued that the creepy stuff helps children to grow emotionally, by allowing them to grapple with fears that are a part of growing up.

Here are 10 fairy tales that are far more disturbing than you realized as a kid.

10: Pinocchio

When you think back to the 1940 Disney version of “Pinocchio,” you probably remember the puppet’s nose growing to indicate fibs, and his cute little pal Jiminy Cricket, who sings the movie’s memorable song “When You Wish Upon a Star.”

But as Time magazine critic Richard Corliss notes: “The movie also taught moral lessons in the most useful way, by scaring the poop out of the little ones.” The script emphasizes, for example, the dangers of running away from home and falling into the clutches of an evil adult. As kidnapper Stromboli tells Pinocchio, “When you grow too old, you will make good firewood.” But the film’s source material, an 1883 story by Carlo Collodi, is even more disturbing. When Pinocchio is teased about his wooden head by his cricket companion, the enraged puppet throws a hammer and kills him….

[Read More – See All 10 Fairy Tales Here!]

Forget Disney and try to go out and find you a REAL fairy tale.

One, that although the ending maybe “happy”…

It takes some macabre twists in order to get there.

And that my friends?

Is what makes these fairy tales of old so delightfully delicious!

Penny Willan

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The little niche book that would, will become the little niche book that could!

Penny Willan and the Well

cropped-penny-willan.jpg

Is. Now. PUBLISHED!

And for those of you who think you might be interested enough to check it out, let me warn you…

It is every different from ANYTHING out there now.

It is very niche.

Very.

Probably stemming from the fact that is has a wide array of influencing elements.

To say I hate spiders? Understatement. To me, they are everything that is evil in this world. Everything that is dark, hairy, crawly, and fangy. What’s not to loathe? They creep me out and in real-world ways that no fictional serial slasher, like Michael Myers, ever could. Also? Not a fan of being in nature. Don’t be me wrong, I love the peace of it, I love the isolation of it, I love looking at it; there are times, like right after a nice, light rain, that I even love smelling it, but being in it? Nope. Not a fan. Too much going on out IN it, that I can’t see, nor control, and I don’t like that. (Yes, yes… I have control issues. What of it?) Plus, I walked, face-first, into a HUGE spider web one night, while out in nature years ago, and well, what can I say… It left an impression.

[Source]

Or, well, the huge spider I clutched in my hand, as I flung it from me, as I screamed into the night, once I caught it crawling on my face, trying to crawl into my mouth, to, you know, probably to eat my soul, but hey… Purely supposition on my part.

That’s a few things that I don’t like, which has influenced me. What I DO like?

I am a HUGE, old school fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Buffy Summers (the title character on the show) was a character a girl could look up to. She wasn’t a simpering damsel wasn’t waiting to be rescued. Oh, no… SHE did the rescuing. SHE did the wooing… And she did it with style, swag and sassiness. She saved the world… A lot. Strong, fun female leads are so rare. I guess that’s why I cherish this one so much and why it stays ever so beloved, no matter the passage of time.

I adore the atmosphere found in the classic monster movies Dracula, The Wolf Man, Frankenstein, The Mummy. That classic Gothic feel, of otherworldly darkness. A place of monsters and darkness, but told in such a way one can’t help but appreciate the romance of them.

I love original fairy tales. Not the watered down versions as told by Disney, but the original tales as told, for example, by Hans Christian Andersen. In their original form, fairy tales were cautionary in purpose. They were meant to serve as warnings for those foolish enough to embark upon life choices the majority where not in favor of. They were dark, often twisted and yet somehow, oddly enough, at the end of them? The reader was often left still OK with the result.

fairytales

I have such a blast watching horror movies, Edgar Allan Poe is the poet I am most often drawn too, I live for the thrummy beat of rock and roll, both lyrics and beat, The Monkey’s Paw still scares me in ways I cherish… I love the history channel and its documentaries, the concept of the seven deadly sins has always fascinated me, I enjoy contemplating how others view moralistic choices via philosophy and theology …I love the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas, I love that feeling I get in my chest, when my heart melts after reading a good love story and I love how my pulse races when I can dive into a good book that has an epic battle, where ultimate evil and ultimate good are the two opposing foes.

[Source]

So much of who I am, so much of what I dislike and so much of what I love all played a part in the creation of my book, Penny Willan and the Well. I loved writing, though at times I never thought I would never get finished. I loved creating it, though at times I felt I was putting far too much into it that people would not pick up on.

Ultimately, I wrote this book for one person.

Me.

I wrote a book I desperately desired to read, when another could not be found.

And I enjoyed the whole, maddening process of it, every part, immensely.

It is my fervent hope, that you might as well.

Take a chance, try it out, see if you can see any of the things that I love and adore mentioned above that so influenced my while writing it and you might find this little niche book that would, will become the little niche book that could…

Find its way to your own list of things you love and adore that might one day influence you.

Who knows… and before you scoff?

Stranger things have happened.

[Source – Groundhog Day]

Delight of Discovery & ‘Penny Willan’… with excerpt!

What makes a good story? For me, there are a few elements that are critical.

Elements such as adventure, suspense, horror… Humor, romance, intrigue… Darkness, light and love.

Nothing makes me happier than to come across a story that takes all of my desired elements, tosses in a little Gothic noir, gives it a little shake and then lets the goodness pour out.

Thou, I must admit, when it comes to reading? Seems like that delight of discovery has been happening a little less of late.

Often at times, I find myself scanning over link after link of books on Amazon, reading the book description and leaving the site without nary a purchase. All because I am just so bored with the commonplace, the normal, the average literary fare.

I want a story, and a unique one. I’m so tired of reading stories that can be easily interchanged with another, by simply swapping character names. The current themes found in popular literature are exhausted: dystopian, new young adult, mom porn, witches and zombies—oh my!haunted well

When was the last time you read something, something new, something different…That grabbed you by the throat and didn’t let go?

When was the last time you read something that changed the way you experienced what you read…A story that stuck with you long after you read it?

If your answer, much like mine, is: “Far too long.”

Well, maybe I can help you out with that…

Penny Willan and the Well, excerpt:

No one really knows,
how the true story goes,
or where the curse had started.
But the curse is one,
forever darkening the sun,
damning the dearly departed.

Thy know no rest,
for the best,
are taken as payment for wishes,
from a magic so dark,
it fills one’s heart,
and the very soul it bewitches.

‘Tis by the old church,
that something there lurks,
deep in the wishing-well.
There something hides,
on its insides,
ready to damn you to Hell.

So drop in your penny,
whenever you’re ready,
and wish for all you could dream.
Wishes come with a price,
so please, think twice,
Envy will tear you apart till you scream.

Release date:
March 10, 2015

The Waltz Beckons… With A New “Penny Willan…” Excerpt!

When was the last time that you read a book, a section of a story, and had to pause your reading out of sheer appreciation for what you just read? A time where you caught that special rhythm, that majestic beat, that flow of words that dances through your head like an operatic symphony? It is the rare author who can, not only capture this magic, but convey it.

There can be true artistry in the written word, if a story is written with passion. Words should be felt, not merely read. They should be sung in your head like a song, while you gasp out in awe, with a whispered gush, at the vision they convey.

Good writing is enjoyed, but great writing? It should be an event… A moment mentally experienced, and one that will henceforth impress upon you, like a long-held cherished memory, etched forever into the fabric of your being via a reality from an author’s inspired, composed creation:

“As he approached the stream, his heart began to thump; he summoned up, however, all his resolution, gave his horse half a score of kicks in the ribs, and attempted to dash briskly across the bridge; but instead of starting forward, the perverse old animal made a lateral movement, and ran broadside against the fence. Ichabod, whose fears increased with the delay, jerked the reins on the other side, and kicked lustily with the contrary foot: it was all in vain; his steed started, it is true, but it was only to plunge to the opposite side of the road into a thicket of brambles and alder bushes.

The waltz begins

The schoolmaster now bestowed both whip and heel upon the starveling ribs of old Gunpowder, who dashed forward, snuffling and snorting, but came to a stand just by the bridge, with a suddenness that had nearly sent his rider sprawling over his head. Just at this moment a plashy tramp by the side of the bridge caught the sensitive ear of Ichabod. In the dark shadow of the grove, on the margin of the brook, he beheld something huge, misshapen and towering. It stirred not, but seemed gathered up in the gloom, like some gigantic monster ready to spring upon the traveller.” ~Washington Irving, The Legend of Sleepy Hallow

Anyone who has ever dreamed of becoming an author, aspires to this. They want to create, conduct, with their imagination something so great as to leave a lasting impact on their readers, long after they’ve read it. And, if their passion is great enough, their desire strong enough, they will find success in the lyrical flow of words they inscribe. These authors will touch you, move you, with the musical cadence of words that pours from their hearts, spilled out on to the page, with the hope that you will enjoy the waltz that they have devised for you, as much as they enjoyed composing it .

Simply this: My great hope is that from Penny Willan and the Well, you will find a waltz worth dancing to.

Excerpt:

“Separated from man,
alone does it stand,
a wishing well aged by time.
Made of hoary stone,
dead weeds ingrown,
dirty and covered with grime.

It sits in a dale,
a sinister vale,
amongst a shroud of trees.
Detached from society,
long had it the notoriety
of dark magic, an evil disease.

There’s those who know,
when into the forest they go,
avoid the wishing well.
‘Tis a place full of evil,
one that feeds on upheaval,
and all at the avarice of Hell.

So, dare not you heed,
the insidious need,
to drop your penny inside,
for Hell it will lash,
your wishes ‘twill cash,
dark torments to never subside.

The wishing well depends,
on your soul for its sins,
to trap you in Hell’s snare.
And with them ‘twill hasten,
your soul to damnation,
passersby ye beware.”

The Well waltz beckons… March 10, 2015.

More excerpts to come. Stay tuned!