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jenthepen
October 6th, 2014, 05:18 PM
Snow White had grown tired of living in poverty in a little cottage in the woods with her poor father.

“I will follow my mother,” she told her father one day, “and seek my fortune in the wider world. When I am rich, I'll get my bank to set up a direct debit and send you an allowance each week.”

After walking for eight hours, Snow White decided the wood was bigger than she had thought and she wished she’d not worn her best Jimmy Choos. She was about ready to give up on her quest when, just at that moment, she spied a tiny cottage almost hidden by the dense undergrowth at the side of the path.

Her knock was answered by a collection of harmless-looking dwarfs and SnowWhite decided it would be safer to shelter with them than to risk spending the night alone out in the forest, especially after what happened to Red Riding Hood and her grandmother.

The dwarfs offered Snow White a deal. “You cook and clean for us and we’ll let you live here rent free.”

Snow White laughed bitterly. “Are you for real! If I’d wanted to be a cleaner and cook I’d have stayed at home with my father. Look, I’ll tell you what I’ll do. You cook and clean for me and, when I get my first book published, I’ll give you a percentage of the royalties.”

The dwarfs were too polite to argue and so an uneasy peace settled over the little cottage. Snow White spent her days writing and the seven dwarfs became increasingly resentful of her sloppy ways and the amount of food she was putting away.

One day, there was a knock on the door and Snow White found a haggard old woman, inadequately disguised as a pizza delivery boy, on the doorstep.

“I have a lovely pizza for the lovely Snow White” she cackled, holding out the cheesy concoction.

Snow White was immediately suspicious. She knew there was no such thing as a free lunch, not even in fairy tales. After inviting the old woman inside and giving her a couple of pints of the dwarfs home-made toadstool beer, Snow White was able to ascertain that the seven dwarfs had hired the old woman as a hit man armed with a poisoned pizza.

Things at the cottage went downhill after that and then, one morning after the dwarfs had left for work, Snow White found a note nailed to her laptop…

We are tired of being ignored and taken for granted. We have gone to live with your dad.
Love, the seven dwarfs.
p.s. your dinner is in the oven.

Snow White sat down and stared at the note. She was so unhappy. She couldn’t believe that the dwarfs had been selfish enough to leave when she still had four chapters of her book to write.

Suddenly, she heard a commotion outside and she ran to the door. The handsome young prince of the Land of Fairy Tales, who happened to have mushroom picking rights in the woods, was outside with his courtiers, all busy gathering mushrooms for the gala ball that was to be held at the palace that night.

The prince, who had been brought up by a strong, independent-minded nanny, saw Snow White and fell in love with her at once.

“Marry me and be my Queen,” he begged.

Snow White quickly weighed up the merits of one day becoming Queen of the Land of Fairy Tales against living alone in a hut in the middle of a wood and accepted his proposal.

They were soon married and she lived happily ever after, ruling over the domain and her husband with a fair and even hand, so that she came to be loved throughout the land. She even sent regular sacks of gold home to her dad and the seven dwarfs. Her book, though, was never completed.

LeeC
October 6th, 2014, 05:50 PM
I love it :applause:

Only one small nit.


“I have a lovely pizza for the lovely Snow White” she cackled, holding out the cheesy concoction.


I think the word 'lovely' twice in close proximity is distracting. Maybe a scrumptious/yummy/? pizza.

If you publish/post this anywhere it's allowed to be shared, please let me know. I like to share it with my 39++++ daughter (a high-school communications teacher) so she can read it to my grandson.

Write on,
LeeC

jenthepen
October 6th, 2014, 07:13 PM
Thanks Lee.
I had a version of this story published in a British magazine about 20 years ago but I updated it to post it here. I just wanted to see if my brand of humour still works :)
I won’t be doing anything else with it now so please feel free to copy it and send it to your daughter. If she wants to use/share it too, that’s fine.
jen

Blade
October 6th, 2014, 07:19 PM
:thumbl:Great story. I would agree with the nit comment by LeeC though I admit I never noticed it on my reading.8-[

This line is fantastic.


The prince, who had been brought up by a strong, independent-minded nanny, saw Snow White and fell in love with her at once.

No better way to quash the fairy tale atmosphere that waving 'political correctness' credentials during a character introduction.\\:D/

Plasticweld
October 6th, 2014, 10:40 PM
Jen, that is a very good story. I would surmise that the ultimate insult to any man, is to deem him harmless. When 7 single men living by themselves in the woods. Who have not seen a woman in who knows how long, is a safer than some old wolf... You might as well castrate them on the spot.


Thanks for the enjoyable read, bringing truth to the old saying the good humor is timeless..Bob

jenthepen
October 7th, 2014, 02:51 PM
Thanks Blade, for the positive comments. Itís good to know the story worked as I meant it to.

Plasticweld: Thanks, Bob. Yes, it seems that none of the men are handled very sympathetically, now I come to look at it. That wasnít deliberate but comes, I suppose, from my attempt to make Snow White a caricature of a strong, independent woman. I donít know what Disneyís excuse was :)

Iím glad you found some humour in it. Believe it or not, one of my earliest ambitions was to be a stand-up comedian but I never found enough confidence to do it and so I compromised by writing humour. Like you say, humour should stand the test of time if itís any good. I suppose thatís what I was trying to find out about my own effort Ė if it was any good. Thatís why the positive responses that Iíve received have been so welcome and reassuring.

Thanks everyone!

Plasticweld
October 8th, 2014, 12:33 AM
Jen I have struggled with writing humor. In person I can illicit a smile, get a laugh in a matter of seconds after we meet. Sarcasm, word play or alteration, the ability to use a pause in just the right way, or to drag out a particular word, all seem to be lost when doing it in writing.


The standard for telling a joke in person seems to be much different, if you happen come across the magic formula let me know....Bob

thepancreas11
October 8th, 2014, 02:21 AM
Nothing stands on its head better than your garden-variety fairytale. I love how human this feels. You could have easily made this some kind of agenda piece: God knows these gender boxes we place ourselves into could use a little barrier-breaking, but as always, subtlety steals the day. The fact that she struggles her way to the end, that her struggles lead to her success, well, that's what gives it a sense of believability. Any time you can do that in a fantasy world, you show true and respectable chops. Unlike the caricatures you see in Disney movies, the Snow White here could be any of hundred different female writers in the chauvinistic decades (which may or not still refer to these days, unfortunately).

It could do a little more for me, morally speaking, only in the sense that some of the actions actually make the character a little too unlikeable. That she takes advantage of the poor little men actually makes me wish she failed a bit, as I do with all self-righteous-sounding protagonists. I would like to see more of an actual conflict going on here, something that changes her into the kind of person that finds success through hard work, rather than someone who kind of lucks her way into finding the one man in all the realm with the most power who just happens to like a strong-willed woman. I guess what I'm saying is that I just don't think the story builds to that central climax or that it resolves itself. It gets to an ending but not so much a resolution.

That being said, I would love to see you enter the Colors of Fiction challenge, if for no other reason than that you possess an extraordinary creative talent here.

qwertyman
October 8th, 2014, 02:05 PM
Oh yes! You win the cake. Witty. Could do with a smart moral at the end...

jenthepen
October 9th, 2014, 04:50 PM
@Plasticweld
Youíre right about written/spoken humor, Bob, they appear to be two different animals. I remember reading something about it, years ago. It was one of those pseudo-scientific things, where they claim to be able to tell you the reason for just about anything, Anyway, according to this theory, the answer is all about the different way we react to humor depending on how we receive it.

Slapstick comedy, funny movies and clowning, we witness by sight and, as such, we have a direct, almost automatic reaction to it with not much thought required.

Spoken humor requires more audience participation because we hear the joke, mentally picture the meaning of the words and then react. The comic can bring the humor nearer to the Ďautomatic reactioní of sight by his body language and all the other techniques that cut down the Ďinterpretation timeí for the listener.

Written comedy cannot use those same techniques to help the audience and has to rely more heavily on the readerís imagination and ability to mentally picture the scene and circumstances before the punch line is delivered. Slow build-up and a much more meandering pace with plenty of graphic detail therefore works better.

Well, thatís the theory but I must admit I donít really consider any of that when trying to write something funny. I did read a lot of the old classic humorists like Patrick Campbell and Bob Newhart and just love that easy, understated style, so I just try to write the way they did and not worry about why it works. ;)


@pancreas11
Thanks for the great comments and especially the massive compliment in your last sentence. I would love to have a go at the CoF contest. Iíll lurk around there for a while to get the feel of how it works first.

On your point about Snow White's story and the way it ends, Iíd say that the message is about the way we often abandon our dreams and ambitions as soon as an easier or more comfortable option comes along. A sudden lottery win would take the fire out of the drive for success Ė especially if we were struggling for that success against the odds. From this point of view, Snow Whiteís dream of becoming a successful writer fails miserably, killed by the removal of the driving force of necessity.

Moral: Ambition takes the line of least resistance.


@qwertyman
Thanks, quertyman. As luck would have it, I just came up with a pretty smart moral for this story (see my answer to pancreas11, above) but there must be better morals in there somewhere Ė for the dwarfs perhaps, or the witch, or Snow Whiteís father. Letís throw it open to everyone - Iíd love some witty suggestions :)

Nippon Devil
October 14th, 2014, 01:47 AM
This has been published, and everyone has already said what I was going to say. However, I did enjoy it.

If you're still looking for an alternate moral... I did find it interesting how Snow White does try to be the man/dad in most of her relationships. That is to say that she wanted to be the one who put the food on the table, while her companions would be the ones to cook it. When the prince arrives, it's almost like she decides to take the role of wife/mother. It even seems like the dwarfs decided to go live with her father. Snow white does say that she had to cook for her father, so perhaps the dwarfs decided to take her place. I guess what I'm getting out of it is that "The grass is always greener on the other side."

jenthepen
October 14th, 2014, 05:35 PM
Thanks, ND.
That's a really clever moral you've come up with. You've managed to find one that works for almost every character. Just need something for the witch now. :)

Courtjester
May 14th, 2016, 01:58 PM
A most enjoyable piece. I wonder if you've thought of handling other fairy tales in the same. If you have, or do, I'd like to read the results.

SomethingWitty
May 20th, 2016, 04:13 PM
Nice! My favorite part? So much happened in the world around her, yet the book was still unfinished! I, sadly, can relate!

Scrivener123
May 20th, 2016, 07:56 PM
I liked the story. It had a sense of whimsy. I also liked the little touches, like the ps about dinner being in the oven. That was cute. I thought it was a good story overall. Thanks for sharing.

jenthepen
May 21st, 2016, 03:02 PM
A most enjoyable piece. I wonder if you've thought of handling other fairy tales in the same. If you have, or do, I'd like to read the results.

Thank you, Courtjester, I'm flattered by your comments. I haven't tackled any other fairy tales but the reactions to this story did encourage me to enter the CoF challenge for the first time. Another story might be a nice idea, maybe from a nursery rhyme this time?


Nice! My favorite part? So much happened in the world around her, yet the book was still unfinished! I, sadly, can relate!

Thanks, SW. Yes, I think all of us around here can relate - me more than most. :)


I liked the story. It had a sense of whimsy. I also liked the little touches, like the ps about dinner being in the oven. That was cute. I thought it was a good story overall. Thanks for sharing.

Thanks, Scrivener, I'm glad you noticed the little ps joke. :) Thanks for the kind comments too.

Scrivener123
May 21st, 2016, 11:49 PM
jenthepen (http://www.writingforums.com/threads/151142-Snow-White-Rewrite-(650-words)/members/53871-jenthepen)

I always notice things like that. Lol.

Shirl the Whirl
June 6th, 2016, 09:11 PM
I really enjoyed this, and particularly liked the fact that the handsome prince happened to have mushroom picking rights in the wood.

jenthepen
June 11th, 2016, 09:04 PM
Apologies for my late acknowledgement of your reply, Shirl. Thanks for the kind comments and I'm glad you noticed that detail - it made me giggle when I thought of it. And welcome! I look forward to seeing some of your writing once you get your first ten posts.

jen

Courtjester
June 25th, 2016, 01:10 PM
A very enjoyable read. I hope you will give us more in the same vein. Cj