Fairy Tale Writing Tips
Fairy Tale Writing is a tradition.
Fairy tales are among the oldest stories to be told that remain circulated in popular culture today. Most people don’t know this, but historians suspect that the tale of Beauty and the Beast is thousands of years old. How amazing is that for a simple story originally passed by word of mouth?
That is why writing a fairy tale is an amazing experience. They are fun, filled with gnomes and goblins, princesses and curses.
And just think, if you create a fairy tale, it could still exist in a thousand years time, and people could still be talking about it.
Decide What Lesson Your Fairy Tale is Going to Teach
Fairy tales were originally conceived as a way for parents to scare their children away from dangerous things. They could warn children about the dangers of letting a stranger into the house with the Three Little Pigs, and teach them to not be greedy, such as the Golden Goose. So, if you are writing a fairy tale, it’s important to stick to that tradition.
You don’t need to think of a way for the lesson to be taught yet, nor do you need to have the plot figured out. All you need to know is what you want the moral of the story to be.
Create a Good Character
As with every fairy tale, you want it to have a hero. Someone you can root for. And while it’s true that nearly no fairy tale hero had a happy ending in the original stories, they all had characters you could side with and wanted to win. So, you need to create your own hero.
Many people write them not just a good person, but selfless too. You don’t need to take that path of you don’t want to though. A few hundred years ago, while there was always a fairy tale hero to root for, most of the hero’s also had flaws, such as being greedy, too curious, or just a little selfish.
No matter what you choose though, your hero needs to be noticed as a hero right away. They need to be the one people read about and say “That’s the hero.”
Create an Evil Character
As in almost every story, there is going to be an villain in a fairy tale. They may not cause the moral to be learned, but they do need to present themselves as the challenges to the heros. They could force the hero to do something for them. Or trick the hero. Or steal from the hero.
Having a villain is important in that it helps people to have a human enemy to root against, whether the villain is human or not.
Usually the villain is the start of most of the trouble, but in the end, they do need to be gotten rid of. They can be kept if you decide to go for a darker fairy tale ending where the hero either dies, or gets turned into a toad or something.
Design a Magical Object to Include
In every fairy tale there is a magical object of some sort. Whether it be magic apples, a staff, a log, or a golden goose, there is always at least one magical object that the hero will use to try and defeat the villain or beat the villain’s challenges.
This is why you need to create your own magical object to give the hero. They need to use it to overcome the villain. It should be something helpful for their journey. It should be something fitting with the theme of the story. An its magical abilities don’t have to be great. It doesn’t even have to have any if you don’t want. Just an object they bring everywhere with them.
You could go for the idea that the villain has a magic object instead though. Then the villain uses it against the hero, and the hero mist somehow find a way to stop it.
Identify the Obstacles Your Good Character is going to Face
Is your hero going to be fighting trolls? Creeping through a haunted forest? Saving a princess?
As the writer, you need to know where your hero starts, where they end up, and how they get there. You need to make a plan and create each and every obstacle they face, and how they’ll overcome it.
This can be a mistake many people who write fairy tales make. They’ll make the adventure too easy. It becomes too easy to complete, and therefor too boring to read.
That’s why it’s important to include a multitude of obstacles and make sure the hero has no easy time getting through them. Just make sure the hero does get through them.
Write a Happy Ending
This isn’t necessarily advice you have to follow. In most of the old fairy tales, there was a moral to the story, and the villain won, or the hero and villain both lost. Or the hero won. You don’t have to end it happily if you don’t want to.
That being said, most people prefer happy endings. First off, plan how you can end it while keeping a moral intact. Maybe the hero almost loses only to suddenly learn kindness, gives someone some food, and poof, then they can save the day.
Second, write it. The whole story. As soon as you complete the first draft, look over it for anything that might need to be fixed or changed. Then go to write a second draft.
This is pretty much the last part. You write, and rewrite, and rewrite until it turns into exactly what you always imagined. And then you’re done. You have finished a fairy tale. All that needs to be done now is give it out to people who will read it and appreciate all the hard work you put into it.
I hope this was helpful in learning how to write and create your own fairy tales. Good luck.