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)’, ‘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.
 Gates, PS, BS Steffel, & FJ Molson, Fantasy literature for children and young adults, Scarecrow Press, USA, 2003, p. 27.