Angela Slatter

Work at The Lifted Brow has forced me to examine a lot of writing I usually wouldn’t read. This is not necessarily a bad thing: if it weren’t for the Brow, I would have never come across ‘Words’ by Angela Slatter.

‘Words’ feels like a fairy tale. In it, her protagonist is not named, and is sketched with sparingly few phrases: ‘She wore a long dress, green and flowing…and her hair was caught up and covered by a scarf’. With ‘little ornamentation and a fondness for repetition and generic, abstract descriptions (e.g.), an old man, an old hag, the youngest son, the oldest princess)’[1], ‘Words’ fits various Gates, Steffel, and Molson criteria for fairy tales.

I’m a sucker for fairy tales. As a teenager, I loved reading reinterpretations by Robin McKinley, and wrote my own novella about a cross-dressing girl who goes on a quest to win her independence, encountering dragons, fairy godmothers, and Rapunzels along the way. Later on, I devoured books like Jack Zipes’ Trials and Tribulations of Little Red Riding Hood, Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber, and Cristina Bacchilega’s Postmodern Fairytales: Gender and Narrative Strategies. A lot of Angela Slatter’s work is inspired by the genre, so I’m looking forward to reading more of her stuff.

She also regularly blogs. She’s just posted up a very long instructional, ‘On the Fine Art of Submitting’, that is muchos useful. Definitely an addition for the blogroll. 

[1] Gates, PS, BS Steffel, & FJ Molson, Fantasy literature for children and young adults, Scarecrow Press, USA, 2003, p. 27.


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