Does the princess have to save herself? (Part I)

When my eighth-grade theater director announced that our spring musical would be Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, I nearly exploded with joy. One of my lifelong dreams was about to be realized: I would get to play an Evil Queen. I'd been perfecting my cackle and my claw-like gestures for years. I'd practiced every manner of tyranny on my younger siblings. Malevolence was my middle name.

My dream was shattered when I was cast as Snow White.

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Looking for Mermaids

I’m skinny with frizzy red hair that springs all around when I dance. Daddy says I remind him of a scrawny pine tree set afire like Moses’ burning bush. I think I’m more like a bouncy ball that someone hurled down a tunnel.

“Be still, Virginia,” Miss Dobson always tells me, but it’s so hard.

I am still when she gives back my history test. I fold the paper carefully into a square the size of a caramel and push it into the back of my desk.

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Swallow the Sea

The Warrior-Daughters of Morin have sworn a blood-oath to hunt the dragon that killed their father. They're everything their father dreamed they would be: famous, skillful, beautiful. Fearless. Relentless.

Except Nuna. She never wanted to be a warrior. She only arouses the wrath of the dragon-king while trying to work up the nerve to shoot a rabbit.

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Would you rather

Would you rather be a kid or a grown-up?/ Would you rather be a kid or a dragon?/ Would you rather be a grown-up or your whole/ body turn into glitter throwed into the air?/ Would you rather play video games all day with/ having no money, or have all the money/ and work all day, work/ twenty-four/ hours and twenty million/ minutes and all the/ every single/ seconds?/ Would you rather be burnt up by a dragon/ or be a grown-up?

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Sub-Creators Should Be Strange: Tolkien’s Principles of Fantasy #3

Tolkien once attended a New Year’s party dressed as a polar bear. He was not the only ursine guest to crash the event; his friend C.S. Lewis showed up in matching attire. One can imagine a conversation that might have taken place on this occasion between two normally-clad, normally-behaved, normal-minded guests:

“Who are those buffoons?”

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Because Eucatastrophe Happens: Tolkien’s Principles of Fantasy #2

This is not about whether all fairy tales should end happily ever after.

(Partly because, as J.R.R. Tolkien pointed out, “there is no true end to any fairy tale” (“On Faerie Stories”).)

This is about a distinct, unforgettable, massively powerful human emotion that Tolkien revered so much he invented a new word to adequately describe it.

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