BY MONIQUE QUINTANA
I’ve spent the past five years rewriting fairy tales, so that they’re more relevant to my experience. In this time I also discovered many new fairy tales from different cultures that have expanded my paradigm about fantastical narratives. I grew up adoring Euro-centric fairy tales, but found them difficult to relate to as a young brown girl growing up in central California. Here are a few writing prompts inspired by pervasive fairy tales. I chose these tales because reimagining popular narratives can be both challenging and an act of resistance.
The Princess and the Pea: Write about a family heirloom that is used to measure a person’s worth.
The Pied Piper of Hamelin: Write about a plague that is disrupting a town. How do the children react differently that the adults?
Beauty and the Beast: Write about leaving a space healthy and returning to the same space to find that it’s ailing? How do you make the space healthy again?
Little Red Riding Hood: Write about a basket that gets passed back and forth between two characters as they are walking to a specific destination. What happens on the way there? How do the basket’s contents affect the interaction between the characters?
Rumpelstiltskin: Write about a scene where someone has some to collect a debt from someone else and the debt cannot be fulfilled.
The Little Mermaid: Write about a body part that has suddenly been transformed into something else. How does the character react to the change to their body and how do others perceive them?
Monique Quintana is the Senior Beauty and Fashion Editor at Luna Luna Magazine and a contributor at Clash Media. Her novella, Cenote City is forthcoming from Clash Books in the spring of 2019. She blogs about Latinx Literature at her site, Blood Moon and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Winter Tangerine, Grimoire, Queen Mob's Tea House, Huizache: The Magazine for Latino Literature and The Acentos Review, among other publications.