Monday, March 24, 2014

Little Red (a short short fairy tale)

© 2013 Sylvia Liu

This is my entry for Susanna Leonard Hill's fractured fairy tale contest (The March Madness Writing Contest), clocking in at 164 words.


LITTLE RED

                Little Red ignored the village worrywarts who warned her about Nail Forest. She would risk the nasty scrapes from rusted ridges and the stinging scratches from metal flakes. It was the only way to get to Nana’s house before dark.
            “Are you lost, young lady?” called a kindly, raspy voice.
            “No. My Nana’s just through the spikes and past Chainsaw Canyon. Thanks for your kind concern.” Little Red smiled at the strange man with long ears and bushy tail.
            The man started forward, but then furrowed his furry brow. He scratched his head with long, sharp nails. Then he smiled, showing long, ugly teeth.
            He should really get those cleaned, Little Red thought.
            Twenty minutes later, she hugged Nana.
            Nana said, “I’m so glad to see you. The Grimm Daily News says that Lone Wolf is roaming Nail Forest and preying on young girls.”
            “Oh, don’t worry, Nana. A really nice fellow also hangs out there. He’ll keep us safe. Here, have some bread.”



32 comments:

  1. It's all in the perception, I guess :) Preying Lone Wolf, or kindly old man who shouldn't be judged by how he looks??? Fun story, and LOVE the accompanying art! Thanks so much for joining in the springtime writing madness! (And what do you mean, "under the wire"? There's still almost 2 hours! :))

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    1. Thanks, Susanna! yes, I wrote it ambiguously - you could read it either way.

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  2. What an imaginative tale! I love the idea of a Nail Forest, and I adore the illustration. Great job, Sylvia!

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  3. Hah! Nice twist. Like Susanna said, it's all in the perception. I've always though that illustration was pretty darned cool. :)

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    1. It's one of my favorites, too. Thank you, T!

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  4. Very clever, and I love the illustrations! Fun, quick read!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by; I appreciate it!

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  5. Little Red sounds like a smart girl! (So jealous of your illustration!)

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  6. Ha! I could here the comedy drums at the end of the story. Ba-dum-PISH! Bonus points for a fabulous illustration, Sylvia!

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  7. I, too, loved the illustration and the twist on Big Bad being Kindly Man instead. Nicely done!

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  8. Gah! Look out Red and Nana!!

    Love and licks,
    Cupcake

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    1. Yeah, Cupcake. Thank you for stopping by!

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  9. I love this, Sylvia! So clever and as you know I am a HUGE fan of your art!!! :)

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  10. Still one of my favorite illos ever. Your poetic language sucks me in every time - you really created a dark tone that I think is true to real fairy tales, which aren't at all about rainbows and bunnies! Great job, Sylvia!

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    1. That means a lot coming from you. Thank you!

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  11. So glad you posted this! Love how this is just a little edgy, dark and quirky :-)

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    1. Thank you, Yvonne - your stories are similarly edgy & quirky!

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  12. I love how much you condensed the story! Great twist and dark features.

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  13. Wow, this is a short tale. ;) I love the idea of a nail forest!!!

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  14. You managed a story and and illustration?! I am in awe. Great job!

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    1. I actually did the illustration last year and when the contest came up, it seemed to be the perfect story to write. Thanks!

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  15. Oh, strangers can be good or bad in the dark nail forest!

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  16. That illustration is the best!!! I adore it!

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