Who Wants to be a Fairy Tale Princess?

Princess RapunzelWhen I was growing up I always wanted to be the prince in the stories. They got to ride horses, fight dragons, and have adventures. Princesses were stuck in towers waiting to be rescued. How boring.

In the old fairy tales, princesses lived happily ever after, not because they earned it through their actions, but simply because of who they were. Most of the princesses were passive, waiting to be rescued. They were beautiful, but weak. I had no patience with them. I could never understand why Rapunzel waited in the tower. Why didn’t she cut off her hair, climb down it, and go to town?

Luckily, nowadays we have vibrant female characters who drive the action and don’t have to wait around for anyone else to rescue them. I was delighted with Disney’s Tangled, their remake of the Rapunzel story. Now here was a heroine I could root for. Making her hair magical was a brilliant idea. Cutting it made it lose it’s power to heal, taking care of one of the basic problems with the story. If you think about something, you can usually figure out a logical way around a problem. In the new version, Rapunzel had a goal. She wanted to see the dancing lights in the sky. She made a plan and went after it. There were setbacks but she figured out a way to handle them and moved on. In the end, she was willing to sacrifice herself to save the man she loved. She earned her happily ever after ending. It wasn’t given to her.

If your main character is female, make sure she drives the story. She should have a goal and make plans to achieve it. When there are obstacles, she should figure out a way around them. In the middle, she may adjust or completely change her goal because of what she has discovered. Time for a new plan. When she goes through her black moment, she should emerge stronger than before and ready to face the climax. Your heroine must take action and earn her ending. Make her strong and give her a smart, clever villain to vanquish. Readers everywhere will thank you. Especially little girls.

1 Comment

  1. Maybe in an era when most people, men and women both, were worked half to death that kind of luxurious boredom sounded more appealing. It certainly doesn’t now!

    Here’s hoping that someday within our lifetimes we won’t even have to have discussions in favor of strong, clever, funny women.

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Who Wants to be a Fairy Tale Princess?

Princess RapunzelWhen I was growing up I always wanted to be the prince in the stories. They got to ride horses, fight dragons, and have adventures. Princesses were stuck in towers waiting to be rescued. How boring.

In the old fairy tales, princesses lived happily ever after, not because they earned it through their actions, but simply because of who they were. Most of the princesses were passive, waiting to be rescued. They were beautiful, but weak. I had no patience with them. I could never understand why Rapunzel waited in the tower. Why didn’t she cut off her hair, climb down it, and go to town?

Luckily, nowadays we have vibrant female characters who drive the action and don’t have to wait around for anyone else to rescue them. I was delighted with Disney’s Tangled, their remake of the Rapunzel story. Now here was a heroine I could root for. Making her hair magical was a brilliant idea. Cutting it made it lose it’s power to heal, taking care of one of the basic problems with the story. If you think about something, you can usually figure out a logical way around a problem. In the new version, Rapunzel had a goal. She wanted to see the dancing lights in the sky. She made a plan and went after it. There were setbacks but she figured out a way to handle them and moved on. In the end, she was willing to sacrifice herself to save the man she loved. She earned her happily ever after ending. It wasn’t given to her.

If your main character is female, make sure she drives the story. She should have a goal and make plans to achieve it. When there are obstacles, she should figure out a way around them. In the middle, she may adjust or completely change her goal because of what she has discovered. Time for a new plan. When she goes through her black moment, she should emerge stronger than before and ready to face the climax. Your heroine must take action and earn her ending. Make her strong and give her a smart, clever villain to vanquish. Readers everywhere will thank you. Especially little girls.

1 Comment

  1. Maybe in an era when most people, men and women both, were worked half to death that kind of luxurious boredom sounded more appealing. It certainly doesn’t now!

    Here’s hoping that someday within our lifetimes we won’t even have to have discussions in favor of strong, clever, funny women.

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *