It happens every year. You would think I'd learn, but I never do. Each year I make resolutions I can't possibly keep. By February and March, most of my resolutions have been so far forgotten, the only memory I have of them is my January 1 journal entry about them. Even when I try to give myself some kind of accountability, the resolutions don't last long. Do you have that trouble?
The past couple of years I've tried doing weekly short stories. It's just not going to happen this year. I'm not even going to try. The trouble is, I'm not very good at short stories. I write these short stories and then suddenly the characters have names and faces and long, complicated stories. But by making it a short story only, I don't have the time to delve into them like I want to. The girl with the scarlet scarf doesn't get to have the college romance I see in her future. The Kansas homesteaders don't get to finish out a year. I could go on, but I think you get the idea.
But even though I'm not very good at short stories, I am pretty good at longer stories. This year, one of my resolutions is to write a chapter in a story every two weeks to be posted on my blog. Here's where you come in. You, the readers, will drive the story. I'll put polls at the end of each chapter to determine where the characters go next. All you have to do is read the chapter as it's posted and then vote in the poll. Sounds fun right?
So let's get started! I've been throwing around some ideas and I think I've decided to do a modern(ish) retelling of Rose Red and Snow White. It was one of my favorites growing up and one that I didn't get to work into the Charming Academy series. Need a refresher?
The way I remember it, there were two sisters: Rose Red and Snow White. They lived with their mother in the woods. One day there was a winter storm and they found an injured bear. He begged them to take him to their home and help him heal. If they did, he would ensure they were protected through the winter and pay them well at springtime. Perhaps overly trusting, the girls took him home and cared for him. They were kept safe during the winter and often found jewels where he rested near the fireplace. When spring came, he left. They followed his trail, but inside of finding the bear they found an imp/dwarf (memory's a little fuzzy). They rescued him from drowning and he disappears, several jewels left behind. They took these home and told their mother (and the returned bear) about their adventures. The upshot is the imp/dwarf thing had placed a spell on the bear (who of course is actually a prince) and stole all his wealth. The bear and girls come up with a plan to force him to remove the spell and return the prince's wealth. There's a battle of wits and in the end the bear turns back into a prince, he marries Rose Red and brings Snow White and the girls' mother to live at his palace where they all live happily ever after.
I need to read it again a few times, but I've got some ideas on how to work this out. What I need today are character names. So, take a look at the polls, choose your favorites and on January 1st, you'll get the first chapter of, well, the title will need to be determined too. :)
Jessica L. Elliott
Author, artist, mom and super-genius